North Dakota Media Plays Follow The Leader On Cramer Scandal


It’s fascinating to watch the Democrats’ well-oiled media strategy at work.

A couple of weeks ago Rep. Kevin Cramer delivered the commencement address to the University of Mary. Despite the speech being live streamed on the internet, and archived there as well, nothing about it (other than the fact that Cramer had delivered it) was deemed newsworthy by the North Dakota media.

Not until, that is, left-wing websites like the Huffington Post and others picked the story up, adding it to their “Repubicans saying crazy things about abortion” narrative. Then, suddenly, it was news in North Dakota.

You really have to marvel at just how efficiently this development of a narrative works for the left. They manufacture a controversy out of what were fairly innocuous comments (it’s not unusual for Republicans to believe that abortion is contributing to an overall decline in the sanctity of life), and they get traction in the media when traditional news outlets report that liberal news outlets are covering it.

That’s a powerful tool for Democrats, especially given how the state’s reporters are willing to let themselves be a cog in the machine, and Republicans should be wary of it. Especially Rep. Cramer, who is in the crosshairs of the left heading into an election cycle where he will be all alone on the top of the ballot in the state.

You even have to admire how Democrats are able to get even clearly false bits of their myth-making woven into the media narrative. In a column about Cramer’s commencement remarks, the Dickinson Press’ Klark Byrd writes that Cramer “threatens Native Americans with a physical act of violence.” He’s referring to the claims made by Democrat operative and Spirit Lake tribal member Melissa Merrick who took to an Indian news website (set up by left-wing political activists) to claim that Cramer had threatened her and other tribal members.

But in context, what Cramer said was figurative. He didn’t literally want to hurt anyone, and it’s hard to imagine how any serious political observer in the state would believe he did. He said he was so frustrated with tribal leadership at Spirit Lake that he wanted to wring their necks. And who can blame him, given the abuse of women and children that has been covered up on the reservation?

Are we really at a point where saying you want to figuratively wring the necks of people allowing women and children to be abused is enough to earn you scorn?

If only people like Mr. Byrd were as quick to condemn the abusers and their enablers at Spirit Lake as they are to jump all over a Republican.

This old media collaboration with liberal new media might be ok if the old media, which claims they’re objective, were interested in having any level of ideological balance in their publications. But they don’t. Not in North Dakota. There are no conservative columnists covering North Dakota in the state’s media. Despite being a “red state,” North Dakota’s newspapers are dominated by left-leaning editorial boards and left-leaning local columnists.

Which makes this “follow the leader” stuff all the more pronounced for the lack of any dissenting viewpoints. It’s fertile ground for Democrat media operatives, that’s for sure.