President Donald Trump earned nearly 63 of the vote in North Dakota last year, and earlier this year a Gallup poll showed he was more popular in this state than any other not named West Virginia.
Why do North Dakotans like Trump so much? I asked Governor Doug Burgum that question today on my radio show as the President flew toward the state to deliver an address on tax reform.
“People in North Dakota are self-reliant,” he told me, adding that the people here appreciate Trump’s “straight talk” and that he’s “not overly reliant on being politically correct.”
Burgum said he felt “gratitude” toward President Trump for the visit.
“Look he’s coming…eight months into his term,” the Governor said. “He isn’t showing up in his last year to check a box.”
I asked Burgum, who was speaking to me before greeting Trump upon his arrival in Bismarck, what he planned on telling President when they meet. “The cabinet he’s put in place…is really making a difference,” Burgum told me.
Earlier today former Governor Ed Schafer wrote a guest post for this blog outlining his work on state tax reform during his time in office from 1992-2000. Schafer says North Dakota’s experience with taxes and economic recovery could be a model for a nation.
Burgum says he agrees with that. “Ed was the guy who got it all going in 1992,” he said, adding that tax reform is “a great message for him to deliver here in North Dakota.”
As for tax reform, Burgum said he’d like to see the President announce policies that could draw businesses back to our country. “If we can get companies invested back in the United States that would be a great thing,” he said.
I asked Burgum about Trump’s announcement on DACA (an Obama-era executive order granting de facto amnesty for the children of illegal immigrants). “If you look at where the responsibility lies for immigration policy, it’s Congress,” he said. Trump announced that he is ending the DACA policy in six months, but asked that Congress act to address the situation before then.
Burgum also pointed out that President Barack Obama had described DACA-like executive action on immigration policy as illegal “half a dozen times” before eventually implementing it.
Here’s audio of today’s full show, which also featured RNC Spokeswoman KAyleigh McEnany. If you’d like to subscribe to the podcast for the show, click here.