Plain Talk: Republican Senator Says Democrat Complaints About Ethics Legislation Are “Posturing”


On this episode of Plain Talk, Republican state Senator David Hogue describes the tricky process of implementing with statute the constitutional amendment voters approved last year with Measure 1. The so-called “ethics” measure, which free speech groups criticized as too burdensome on political activities, must be implemented because it’s in the state’s constitution now. But Hogue acknowledges that the requirements of that amendment must be balanced against other constitutional imperatives.

Like protecting the free press and free speech.

Some are now saying the legislation emerging in Bismarck has too many loopholes. “I would fairly describe it as posturing,” Hogue said of the complaints. He noted that Senator Tim Mathern, a Democrat from Fargo and member of Measure 1’s sponsoring committee, offered implementing legislation earlier this session which contained the same alleged loopholes.

“He proposed a bill in the Senate. It didn’t address these loopholes he’s talking about now,” Hogue said.

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