Suspended Senator Frye-Mueller files federal lawsuit

Lawsuit is an attempt to have the South Dakota state Senate reinstate her.
Published: Jan. 30, 2023 at 2:45 PM MST
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RAPID CITY, S.D. (KOTA) - Suspended Republican state Sen. Julie Frye-Mueller of Rapid City has filed a lawsuit Monday in Federal District Court in Pierre.

Republican Sen. Tom Pischke from Dell Rapids announced that Frye-Mueller filed the lawsuit during an attempt to have the Senate reinstate her and pause the investigation. The suit names Sen. Lee Schoenbeck, President Pro Tem of the Senate from Watertown, in his official capacity.

Former Republican Rep. Steven Haugaard from Sioux Falls represents Frye-Mueller.

Frye-Mueller also requested the court expedite the proceedings.

Also Monday, the Senate passed an amendment to its rules to handle personal matters. Sen. Schoenbeck said that was similar “to what any South Dakota employer might do” in the same situation. broadcast the first meeting of the Select Committee on Discipline and Expulsion at 2 p.m. (MT) Monday.

Frye-Mueller, who represents District 30 in the state Senate, was pulled from her committee assignments after an exchange with a female legislative staff member. A day later, the Senate voted to indefinitely suspend Frye-Mueller pending an investigation into an exchange the senator had with a Legislative Research Council staffer.

Here is the statement from the LRC staff member, regarding her conversation with Frye-Mueller:

Letter from LRC staffer to Senate leaders about a conversation with Sen. Julie Frye-Mueller...
Letter from LRC staffer to Senate leaders about a conversation with Sen. Julie Frye-Mueller (R-Rapid City)(Dakota News Now)