Five choices for governor, three on ballot
Incumbent faces challenges from two parties, two write-ins
A Dickinson veterinarian, a Larimore military retiree and businessmen from Minot and Hillsboro are challenging North Dakota’s incumbent governor in his bid for a second term.
Gov. Doug Burgum is joined on the statewide ballot by Democratic-NPL candidate Shelley Lenz, Dickinson, and Libertarian DuWayne Hendrickson, Minot. Running as write-ins are Bruce Moe of Hillsboro and Michael Coachman of Larimore.
Lenz, a veterinarian and businesswoman, has served on the Killdeer School Board and runs local and international economic development programs that focus on individual, business and agricultural financial independence.
Ben Vig, who is on the Democratic-NPL ticket for lieutenant governor, is a fifth generation farmer near Sharon. He served in the 2007 and 2009 Legislatures and has been active in the North Dakota Farmers Union and other farm groups.
“We are running because we believe that it’s time for a new kind of leadership. Leadership that does not focus on the past or partisan ideology, but leadership that focuses on building bridges across the state, across the aisle, and across generations to make government work for all North Dakotans,” according to their website at https://lenz-vigfornd.com.
Lenz proposes a Homegrown Prosperity Initiative that calls for investing in education, health care, infrastructure and research. She said it is time for North Dakota to invest in the people and infrastructure that leads to economic diversification, local opportunities and a stable workforce. That includes initiatives to develop small businesses, fund research and higher education and champion public-private partnerships.
Hendrickson said his plan is to reduce the size of government. He supports less spending and following the Constitution.
“We have to change the direction of our government before it is too late. As Grandpa Du to my 12 grandkids, my hope is that we can leave them a better state and nation. Abolish property taxes is one of my priorities. It is time for the homeowner to really be the owner of their home. With COVID 19 and loss of job/income this becomes a greater issue,” he said.
Hendrickson also advocates for legalizing Cannabis.
“I would not be working for We, the People if I did not address this. This is needed for a multitude of reasons, beginning with our medical marijuana bill that was taken apart to the ruining of people’s lives over a plant, which causes job loss, inability to get student loans or rent a home. I am hoping that this can be accomplished through our Legislature,” he said.
Henrickson’s running mate is Joshua Voytek, a Fargo restaurant manager. Hendrickson has a Facebook page at DuWayne Hendrickson For Governor 2020.
Coachman, who garnered 10% of the Republican vote against Burgum in the primary, is running a write-in campaign in the general election. He has campaigned on adherence to the Constitution, transparency and returning government to the people.
Coachman served 20 years in the military and is on the Larimore City Council. His priorities include bringing businesses to small towns and Native American communities and stopping the flow of money to special interests that shouldn’t be receiving state funds. He supports lower taxes, school choice and limited government with personal responsibility, according to his website at https://michaelcoachman.com.
His running mate is Joel Hylden, a Park River banker.
Write-in candidate Bruce Moe is a conservative small business owner from Hillsboro who wants to bring change to state government.
“I would institute as little control over citizens of ND as possible, by assuring that executive orders are justified and considerate of the fact that Fargo is inherently different in many ways from Grand Forks, as it is from Devils Lake or Walhalla. COVID brought a very broad range of control and rules that just didn’t make sense being implemented everywhere across the state. Douglas Burgum irreparably harmed many small businesses and smaller communities with his One Size Fits All edicts. Burgum’s executive orders impinged upon the freedoms and constitutional rights of many more North Dakotans than they helped,” Moe said.
Moe said he will listen to the citizens and serve them rather than political parties or special interest groups.
“As a true Independent, I would see to less control emanating from Bismarck, and more power spread throughout the state at the regional and local levels. I’m also a firm believer in the 10th Amendment and states’ rights. We need to get out from under the thumb of federal government restrictions and start doing what’s right for North Dakota,” he said.
His priorities include no property taxes for citizens older than 60 who have no mortgage payments; comprehensive exams on basic education for K-12 school students; tax incentives for smaller, entrepreneurial enterprises rather than corporations; and less bureaucracy and more user-friendly customer service, especially when considering gun and property rights.
More information can be found at Bruce Moe for ND Governor on Facebook.
Burgum took office when North Dakota was facing a budget deficit and dealing with protests over an oil pipeline. His website at dougburgum.com cites the creation of $174 in property tax relief and reduction in general fund spending of $1 billion while arriving at a peaceful resolution with protestors and ensuring the pipeline was completed.
He credits his administration with teaming to balance the budget, diversify the economy and revitalize communities through his Main Street Initiative. With the help of First Lady Kathryn Burgum, the administration says it is leading the charge against the addiction epidemic.
Burgum founded Great Plains Software, which sold to Microsoft Corp. in 2001. He remained as senior vice president through 2007. In 2006, he founded Kilbourne Group, a company committed to vibrant downtowns. In 2008, he co-founded Arthur Ventures, a venture capital firm that invests in software companies. He held board leadership positions with two other software firms and was executive chairman of the board of North Dakota healthcare technology startup Intelligent InSites, which provides software for healthcare. Among his other positions has been serving as board member for Arthur Companies, a diversified agribusiness company founded by his grandparents. In 2009, he received the Theodore Roosevelt Rough Rider Award.
Brent Sanford, Burgum’s lieutenant governor candidate, is a former Watford City mayor who has worked as a certified public accountant and as owner of S & S Motors in Watford City.