Butte County Sheriff at 2024 State of the Union Speech

Belle Fourche News

Sheriff Fred Lamphere

Special to the Beacon

I received an invitation to attend the State of The Union Address as a guest of South Dakota Representative Dusty Johnson. It was cited in the invitation that with the work that I have done on informing South Dakotans about Southwest Border issues along with the current Border Crisis, I would get an opportunity to see if the Border would be addressed.

I will first say that it was an absolute Honor to receive an invite. I accepted the opportunity to represent the Citizens of Butte County and South Dakota.

The day of the event started at Representative Johnson’s office at around 10 AM.

We went to a press conference and spoke with multiple media outlets. Most questions focused on what we were expecting to see President Biden deliver in his speech.

There was a little break mid day. I was able to meet and have lunch with a friend of mine near the Capitol Building.

Meeting back at Johnson’s office around 2:30.

We started doing some more press interviews from Dusty’s office. Miss America stopped in to see Dusty. She had been a visitor with Dusty a few years back and appreciated his work and hospitality to her when she was younger. We had a good visit with his awesome staff before going to the first reception at the Library of Congress. That was a very nice event and well attended. I was introduced to many other guests and their hosts.

We then went to the Reception at the Capitol that was hosted by the Speaker of the House Mike Johnson. Again I met many other guests including some fellow Sheriffs. It wasn’t long before we had to be seated.

The guests were all seated in the balcony , I was in a very good seat with a full view of the entire event.

It was a very humbling and patriotic experience. The protocol that lead up to the President arriving was spot on.

I will say that I do respect the Office of the President of the United States and I am proud to be an American. I have no regrets on attending this event.

A few things that I would have liked to have heard about.

I would have liked to heard more about securing the Border. The comments about gun control, banning assault rifles and the lives that were taken by gun violence. Which numbers nationwide around 6,000. That number is tragic, but it fails to compare to the over 100,000 fentanyl deaths due to the Unsecured border. I also feel that trying a gun ban while we have knowledge that we have literally millions that have entered our country illegally. I am the Sheriff, but myself and my Deputies can’t be everywhere all the time and the last thing I would ever do is try to take away something that would allow a citizen to protect their families and property.

He talked about creating jobs and pushing a “Green Initiative “. The fallout of mandating those kind of policies and creating new jobs is that it eliminates jobs at a different level.

I would have liked to hear about the shrinking number of Agriculture Producers across America. As our smaller local agricultural producers get out of business it allows larger Corporations ( many foreign owned) to buy up the ag land and eventually stopping production to increase dependency on foreign imports to our country. I feel there needs to be more incentives to keep smaller ag production going in America.

Lastly , I feel that when he addressed the size of candy and snacks being put into bags was a slap in the face of all the people that have been killed and victimized by the results of an unsecured border.

I will say our Representative Dusty Johnson is well respected by his colleagues and that his staff is as good as it gets. Dusty is high energy and politely aggressive South Dakota influence. I feel that he will continue to preserve our South Dakota values.

Respectfully , Butte County Sheriff Fred Lamphere