The North Dakotans for Public Integrity, an ostensibly local front group for left wing interests funded by big donations from Hollywood activists , was successful in getting Measure 1 approved on the statewide ballot last month.
A couple of days ago my colleague Robin Huebner reported a story about a 12-year-old Fargo girl Sylvia Peach Leiviska who shot a 600-pound wildebeest during a trip to South Africa. The hunt took place on a game preserve. None of the animals there are endangered. In fact, most of them are bred specifically to be hunted.
As we head into another one of North Dakota’s notoriously unpredictable winters, school closures because of inclement weather will be much on our minds. But with school closures come make up days, which see schools opening when they’d be normally closed in order to meet state requirements for instruction time. It’s a drag, but a couple of Republican lawmakers from the Jamestown area think they might have a solution, and they’re submitting it as legislation for the upcoming 2019 session starting next year.
“North Dakota collected $750,000 more in new online sales taxes since late June, when the Supreme Court ruled states could require online retailers to collect and remit their sales taxes,” my colleague Helmut Schmidt reported over the holiday break . His article casts this number in a positive light. Certainly the people quotes are happy about it.
Over the years I have often heard North Dakota politicos of the Republican persuasion joke that if the Democrats in our state aren’t going to use their party for anything meaningful it ought to be taken over by conservatives, leaving us with a political divide between conservative and moderate Republicans. State Rep. Rick Becker, a Republican from Bismarck and the leader of what he calls the Bastiat Caucus of libertarian-minded Republican lawmakers, considered turning that old saw into a reality this legislative session. Sort of.
Despite it being a terrible (and blatantly unconstitutional, in many regards) proposal, North Dakota voters approved Measure 1 in the election last week. I believe the measure should be immediately challenged in court , but probably before that can happen the Legislature has some work to do. Because in many areas the ballot measure’s language requires that the Legislature implement its directions as statute.
Much of the turmoil in North Dakota’s university system in recent years has been a product of the struggle by the State Board of Higher Education, and the Legislature, to get the state’s 11 public campuses to work together as a unified system. The NDUS is addled by parochialism, particularly at the largest institutions in Fargo and Grand Forks where arrogant administrators backed by powerful alumni and large hometown legislative delegations have consistently defied unity efforts.
Kylie Oversen, candidate for Tax Commission and erstwhile chair of the North Dakota Democratic Party, has made a lot of hay on the campaign trail over her opponent’s struggles with alcohol. She’s run two ads attacking incumbent Republican Ryan Rauschenberger’s arrest for driving under the influence of alcohol last year. Here’s the first one, which was posted online about a month ago. It features actual video from the arrest:
President Trump has made multiple visits to Fargo this election cycle in support of U.S. Senate candidate Kevin Cramer, and the reaction from incumbent Senator Heidi Heitkamp’s surrogates in the press was to get bent out of shape about the cost of security. Fargo Mayor Tim Mahoney even requested that Republicans reimburse law enforcement expenses .
A reader alerted me to this curious message on Facebook which tells voters they may lose their hunting licenses in other states if they vote. Facebook keeps a searchable database of the political ads which run on their platform. I searched for this particular ad to verify it, and it’s real . Paid for by the North Dakota Democratic-NPL.