Community Columnists

Congress needs to kill the health insurance tax

The surly conflagration of partisan politics in Congress recently assured the death of large-call health care reform. Now, lawmakers are left with only two choices: They can continue to play the blame game or they can start fixing what’s wrong with the existing law. Enough time has already ...

Is a reinvigorated NPL what North Dakota Democrats need to win?

MINOT — Allow me to quantify the depths of failure the North Dakota Democratic-NPL party has achieved in recent election cycles. Republicans currently have a 38 to 9 majority in the state Senate and a 81 to 13 majority in the state House of Representatives. Democrats hold not a single ...

Some good news and bad news for the NDGOP heading into 2018

I have some good news and bad news for North Dakota Republicans who are anxious to maintain and expand their grip on elected office. First, the bad news. Tom Campbell, a state Senator from Grafton, has not inspired a lot of confidence since noisily announcing a challenge to U.S. Senate ...

Imperative that Congress should reauthorize NFIP prior to its expiration

The current National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) reauthorization expires on September 30, 2017. As flood insurance is an important issue for the North Dakota Insurance Department, for our state and for the thousands of consumers in North Dakota who are affected by the decisions being made at ...

ND politicos are treating Trump like an election year asset

Will President Donald Trump be an albatross around the neck of Republican candidates in North Dakota during the 2018 election cycle? Former state lawmaker Kylie Oversen, the titular chairwoman of the state Democratic Party, seems to think so. She says fear created by Trump’s leadership is ...

Republicans raise crop of candidates

Like weeds in a summer garden, Republican candidates for the U.S. Senate keep cropping up. To be strictly accurate, these are candidates for the Republican endorsement for the U.S. Senate. So far, there’s only one of these. There’s lots of talk about others, though, because the ...

Deploying violence against speech, even hateful speech, is no act of heroism

Will North Dakota get its own version of Charlottesville? A Fargo man named Peter Tefft, a self-described “white nationalist” whose family made national headlines for disowning him after he participated in the Charlottesville protest, has alluded to possibility of a similar event in his ...

God okays slaying of the Koreanites

"Go ahead and nuke them,” Spiritual Chancellor Robert urged the Emperor as he wondered what to do about the Koreanite unbelievers who now possessed weapons of fire and fury that could reach his kingdom. “God chose you to be emperor; God gives you unlimited fire and fury,” Holy Bob said, ...

A proposed state law would have protected Charlottesville driver

On Saturday, nonviolent anti-Nazi protestor Heather Heyer was killed in Charlottesville when a car driven by a white nationalist slammed into other cars, sending them into a crowd. Nineteen others were injured. That driver, James Fields, Jr., now faces multiple criminal charges in Virginia, ...

Kulm waits to see if white supremacist is coming to town

KULM — The concern in Kulm began with a Facebook post from Shannon Maresh, the granddaughter of white supremacist Gordon Winrod. Maresh, formerly Shannon Leppert, wrote that her grandfather was “setting up shop” in the old Kulm school. “We are all ‘blood sucking Jews,’ whatever ...

‘We the people’ may be a bigger threat to free speech than the government

How free is your speech when the price of saying or doing something controversial may be your livelihood and personal well being? That’s an important question for America in 2017, where expressing unpopular views might earn you a public shaming on Twitter and a “doxing” (online slang ...

Weather modification is more a handout than an earnest effort to make it rain

With a severe drought having put its boot on the throat of North Dakota’s agriculture industry, simmering resentment over the state’s weather modification efforts have come to the surface. Seven North Dakota counties — Bowman, Burke, McKenzie, Mountrail, Ward, Williams, and a part of ...

Address hate crimes by empowering judges, removing politics

Everyone is aware of the incident involving those women in that Fargo Walmart parking lot, and the debate we now have about hate crimes legislation. It’s been a long time coming: North Dakota ranks second-highest in hate crimes per capita, and has ranked no lower than second since 2011. The ...

North Dakota doesn’t need hate crime legislation

After an ugly altercation between a white woman and three Somali women in the parking lot of a Fargo Walmart made national headlines, the usual cast of political opportunists have parachuted in to make political hay. North Dakota is one of just a few states without hate crime legislation on ...

ND Licensing Boards Facing 2 Challenges

According to the Office of the Governor, North Dakota has 45 boards, commissions and entities charged with licensing various professions to protect the health and welfare of the consuming public. These boards are currently facing two challenges. A well-funded group of libertarians are arguing ...

Dakota Access Pipeline company should never, ever pay for protest costs

Legal battles over the Dakota Access Pipeline persist, but for the time being the oil flows. The political extremists who used violence and vandalism to try and block the project’s completion are gone. But a legacy of their indefensible behavior persists. The State of North Dakota incurred ...

More work, new life in Garrison project

The work load at the Garrison Diversion Conservancy District headquarters in Carrington, N.D., is increasing, but the district’s general manager doesn’t mind. Duwayne Dekrey sees the added work as a sign that there’s still life in the century-old dream of moving water from the Missouri ...

Chief Todd hopes community takes positive lesson from parking lot incident

FARGO – Fargo Police Chief David Todd wants the community to learn a lesson from the meeting he facilitated between Amber Hensley and two Somali-American women who were involved in a nasty confrontation last week in a Fargo Walmart parking. “I wanted the community to see that if you take ...