PIERRE, S.D. (AP) - South Dakota Gov. Dennis Daugaard and Secretary of State Jason Gant are asking the state's attorney general to investigate automated telephone calls criticizing Republican legislative leaders for supposedly not adhering to the party's principles.

Daugaard and Gant want to know who is behind the calls and if they violate a state law requiring certain campaign disclosures for groups active 60 days before an election. The anonymous campaign also includes letters, postcards and emails. Daugaard in an email to supporters refers to the people behind the campaign as "cowards."

State Democratic Party Chairman Ben Nesselhuf says the party has nothing to do with the calls.

Fulton Republican Rep. Stace Nelson leads a group of conservatives who often clash with the GOP leadership. He thinks the calls are legal.

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