Monday, December 17, 2018
Red State Dems North Dakota

By Jack Russell


First Rob Port, now The Forum. Rep. Kevin Cramer’s camp brought out the big guns recently with an editorial in The Forum defending him in light of George Sinner’s No Work, No Pay rollout.

It’s got to be a solid hit when the state’s largest paper feels the need to come to Cramer’s defense.

Frankly, I don’t think the editorial writer(s) even really bothered to learn anything about Sinner’s policy idea. They just took one part and perseverated on it. Tellingly and predictably, there is NOT ONE mention of a key component of the initiative – that members of Congress would not be paid in the event the government shutdown.

That’s a pretty big part to just ignore. It’s also inconvenient for their argument, seeing as Cramer supported the shutdown AND continued to collect his paycheck when so many other House and Senate members donated theirs. And it’s not even a partisan thing, considering both Senators Hoeven and Heitkamp did it. (Although, let’s be honest, we all know Cramer is the odd one out in that trio).

He also can’t seem to remember why it is he did keep his paycheck while so many other people struggled because of his obstructionist dealings. Let’s recap, shall we? First, he said he earned it (said no one ever about Kevin Cramer), then it was that he had donated it but didn’t put out a release, and, for the most recent excuse for keeping his paycheck, it was because he was required to take it by federal law (*cough*LIES*cough*). Somebody get this man some ginseng stat! Quick reminder in case you missed it the first time…many members donated their pay, including North Dakota’s own John Hoeven and Heidi Heitkamp.

For a newspaper, The Forum seems remarkably uninformed – they actually pat Cramer on the back for the passage of the Farm Bill. Um… remember how that totally almost didn’t happen because somebody – and by “somebody” I mean Kevin Cramer and his super conservative buddies in Washington – voted to separate the ag portion from the nutrition portion, which meant it would never get the support it needed from more urban states to actually pass. Yes, that happened, and shame on you Forum for selling out because your boy’s feathers got ruffled!

Cool story, bro. The Farm Bill is only one of the single most important pieces of legislation for North Dakota. I’m starting to change my mind on this whole missed votes thing. Maybe we should just have him keep missing votes if this is what happens when he shows up.

Maybe The Forum really does believe that the votes themselves are more important than being present for voting on a regular basis. I’ll give them the benefit of the doubt. It seems likely, however, that they actually agree with Sinner on the shutdown, because they couldn’t bring themselves to defend Cramer on that particular point. Hell, even the head of the ND Republican Party disagreed with him on that.

I will …read more


Like this Article? Share it!

About The Author

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