Monday, December 17, 2018
Red State Dems North Dakota

If I were a newspaper reporter, I would call the Governor’s Office today. i would get anybody on the phone that would talk to me. I would talk to the Governor or Lt. Governor. I’d talk to a press person or a scheduler. I’d talk to a chief of staff, an intern, a window washer or a dog walker. My question would be this:

Has Jack Dalrymple or Drew Wrigley ever been to the Standing Rock reservation, ever?

If the person I had on the phone didn’t know, I’d ask for someone who might. I’d sit on hold for an hour or six hours. Because it is my job to inform the public. And this is kind of important. I’d want do whatever I had to do to get an answer to that question.

Standing Rock makes up most or all of Sioux County, North Dakota. Sioux County is — perhaps obviously — part of North Dakota. Jack Dalrymple was a state senator for maybe fourteen (14) years. He ran two unsuccessful U.S. Senate campaigns (in 1988 and 1992), asking to represent the entire state in Washington. Then he was Lieutenant Governor for ten (10) years. He has now been Governor for nearly four years.

Drew Wrigley was North Dakota’s U.S. Attorney for about eight (8) years and has been Lt. Governor for four. One of his most important jobs while U.S. Attorney is (or should have been) enforcing federal laws on all of North Dakota’s reservations. (More on that, here.) As Lt. Governor, it should also be Wrigley’s job to represent the entire state, including Sioux County; including all residents of Sioux County. Though it might surprise Wrigley and Dalrymple, that includes native and non-native people.

During their combined thirty-six (36) years of public service, has either one of them EVER been to Sioux County (i.e. Standing Rock)?

If so, did they ever go anywhere other than directly to and directly from Prairie Knights Casino?

I’d bet they haven’t. I’d bet that, if they have, it was only to go drop a few quarters into the slot machines at Prairie Knights and maybe get a bite to eat.

Now that the President of the United States is traveling from Washington, D.C., to Standing Rock to meet with tribal officials and others, Don’t you think it would give the People of North Dakota some important context to know how much time the state’s elected leaders have spent in the Standing Rock Nation? I think it would be helpful to know whether our Governor and Lt. Governor have ever bothered to set foot on Standing Rock.

Is it crazy of me to think that?

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About The Author

Jack is a North Dakota political blogger who also writes for He is a military veteran and a Christian Democratic Socialist.