Grand Forks Herald: Heidi Heitkamp Vote To Filibuster Sanctuary City Sanctions Was "Misguided"

heidi heitkamp

Earlier this week I flagged a vote by Senator Heidi Heitkamp to filibuster legislation which would put federal sanctions on so-called “sanctuary cities” which flout immigration laws.

It was an interesting vote for Heitkamp, both in that it continues her utter hypocrisy on the filibuster (she was against filibusters until she was in the political minority in the Senate) and it’s one most of her constituents probably don’t support.

Today the Grand Forks Herald scolds Heitkamp for the vote.

[mks_pullquote align=”right” width=”300″ size=”24″ bg_color=”#ffffff” txt_color=”#000000″]”There’s no excuse for American cities refusing to cooperate with federal immigration enforcement efforts.”[/mks_pullquote]

“[I]t was a mistake to filibuster the bill, which served only to save President Barack Obama from the apparent embarrassment of having to veto it,” writes editor Tom Dennis for the Herald. “Remember, this wasn’t a vote on the bill’s merits. This was a vote on whether to allow a vote. And by preventing routine legislation from getting a Senate vote, the senators entrench Washington’s gridlock rather than ease it.”

That stands in stark contrast to how Heitkamp campaigned. On her still-active 2012 campaign website Heidi Heitkamp said there are “too many extreme politicians in Washington” who hold the country “hostage to advance their narrow political agenda.” Heitkamp’s comments were aimed at the filibuster, which she pledged to reform during her campaign and voted to obliterate for judicial confirmation votes while a member of the Senate majority in 2013 and 2014.

I guess Heitkamp’s stance on the filibuster wasn’t terribly principled.

The Herald also accused Heitkamp of being something other than the independent moderate she campaigned as. “[T]hey should have showed their independence a second time by voting to pass the bill,” Dennis writes, referring to Heitkamp along with Minnesota’s Senate delegation. “There’s no excuse for American cities refusing to cooperate with federal immigration enforcement efforts.”

This is not a good development for Heitkamp who has had a tough political year. Even as Republican tout polling which they say shows her popularity sagging (I haven’t been made privy to the data), the state media seems to be catching on to Heitkamp’s departure from her campaign trail stance on the issues.

If Heitkamp has lost the Herald editorial board – not exactly a bastion of right-wing sympathies – she’s in a lot of trouble.