Author Archives: Rob Port

Local Politics Are as Partisan and Ideological as Any Other Kind of Politics, We Just Pretend Like They Aren’t

Local Politics Are as Partisan and Ideological as Any Other Kind of Politics, We Just Pretend Like They Aren’t

Earlier this year state Rep. Scott Louser, a Republican from Minot, introduced legislation which would have allowed local elected leaders to identify themselves with a political party on the ballot. It was permissive legislation, which is to say that nobody would have been forced into an affiliation. Local candidates, much like legislative and statewide candidates

Sen. Heidi Heitkamp (D-N.D.) talks to voters at AFL-CIO House of Labor in Bismarck, N.D., Nov. 5, 2018. (Hilary Swift/Copyright 2019 The New York Times)

Some Democrats Relieved Heitkamp Won’t Run for Governor

Yesterday I shared polling from Governor Doug Burgum’s not-yet-officially-announced re-election campaign showing the incumbent with a commanding lead in a hypothetical match-up with former Senator Heidi Heitkamp. Reacting to that poll later in the day, Heitkamp said that particular competition would remain strictly hypothetical. Heitkamp tells Bismarck Tribune she's not running for governor next year

Plain Talk: North Dakota’s New ACLU Leader Says He’d Like to Find Common Ground With Conservatives, Burgum Pollster Talks 2020 Race

Can the ACLU, widely perceived as a left-wing organization, find common ground with conservatives in North Dakota? The new leader of the organization in the state, Dane DeKrey, says he’d like to try. Also Chip Englander, pollster for Governor Doug Burgum’s campaign, talks about the 2020 race. Use the links below to subscribe to the

North Dakota governor candidate Doug Burgum addresses supporters after winning the Republican vote in the primary election Tuesday, June 14, 2016, at Ecce Gallery in downtown Fargo. Dave Wallis / The Forum

Burgum Polls Himself Against Heidi Heitkamp Ahead of 2020 Campaign

Governor Doug Burgum’s re-election campaign has been polling, and gave me exclusive access to the results. You can read their full polling memo below. There are a couple of things about this poll which are just as interesting as the actual numbers. First, there has been some whispers in state political circles that Burgum might

Jodi Beauchene has started a change.org petition to change state domestic violence law after her friend Denise Anderson was found murdered at the beginning of August. WDAY photo

Plain Talk: Changing North Dakota’s Domestic Violence Laws, and How Can Democrats Win Over Rural America When They Hate Fossil Fuels?

On this episode of Plain Talk, Jodi Beauchene was a friend to Denise Marie Anderson. Anderson was the victim of murder and arson in Fargo, and a former boyfriend is currently facing charges. Beauchene has started an online petition calling for changes to North Dakota’s domestic violence laws to make it easier for people to

Sen. Heidi Heitkamp and former Vice President Joe Biden raise arms in unity at the North Dakota Democratic convention in Grand Forks during the 2018 election cycle. Photo by Eric Hylden/Grand Forks Herald

How Can Democrats Reach Out to Rural Voters When They Hate What We Do for a Living?

Last month at one of the debates held for the crowded field of Democratic presidential candidates, supposedly moderate front runner Joe Biden said there would be no place in his administration for oil and coal. Biden on whether or not there would be a place for fossil fuels including coal and fracking in his administration:

Plain Talk: Expanding Capacity for the Dakota Access Pipeline, and What Can We Really Do to Stop Mass Murder Attacks?

“Nothing changes with respect to the operating pressure.” That’s what Glenn Emery said of the expansion of the Dakota Access Pipeline on this episode of Plain Talk. He is the Vice President of Commercial Operations and Business Development for Energy Transfer Partners – the company which owns DAPL – and he says the construction of

Adobe Stock Art

Print Column: Post-Shooting Hysteria Ignores the Reality of What Really Keeps Us Safe

MINOT, N.D. — What keeps you from being murdered on any given day? It’s a serious question, and one we should be asking as we grapple with what to do in the wake of mass murder attacks in Texas and Ohio. In the hysterical environment after one of these attacks — one inflamed by posturing

State Rep. Karla Rose Hanson (D-Fargo)

Proposed “Red Flag Law” for North Dakota Doesn’t Need to Be Resurrected

“There was a lot of learning that was happening about the gun violence issue as a whole, as well as what this bill would really do,” state Rep. Karla Rose Hanson, a Democrat from Fargo, told my colleague John Hageman. “Sometimes things take more than one session.” Hanson was responding to questions about whether or

Flags fly at half-staff at Hector International Airport in Fargo in honor of the Colorado shooting victims. David Samson / The Forum

Stop Lowering the Flags

“It’s never just guns. It’s never just mental health. It’s never just radical ideology. It’s never just sad manhood. It’s almost always a toxic combination.” That’s what New York Daily News opinion editor Josh Greenman wrote on Twitter in the time after the mass shooting in El Paso, but before the one in Dayton. His statement

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