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Supreme Court Extends Their Blaine Amendment Ruling to Case Involving School Vouchers

Supreme Court Extends Their Blaine Amendment Ruling to Case Involving School Vouchers

Earlier this week I wrote about a U.S. Supreme Court ruling on Blaine Amendment laws which prohibit the flow of public dollars to organizations with a religious affiliation. Think private schools affiliated with, say, a church. I noted that there might be implications in the law for school choice proposals. Here in North Dakota our

North Dakota State University President Dean Bresciani speaks at a presidential search open forum Jan. 12 on Ohio University's campus in Athens, Ohio. Submitted photo.

NDSU President Dean Bresciani Finally Figured Out How to Keep His Mouth Shut

It wasn’t a surprise at all that, after a year of basically being put on probation, NDSU President Dean Bresciani got his contract renewed. He has been “chastened” one higher ed insider told me months ago. After years of fostering a belligerent relationship with state lawmakers and even his superiors in the university system, the

The Head of the North Dakota College Democrats Needs Some Remedial Work on Vocabulary

Last week I wrote that Senator Heidi Heitkamp is the most disingenuous politician in North Dakota. That’s because she’s pretending as though she’s undecided about a 2018 run for the U.S. Senate even as she raised a massive (by North Dakota standards) $1.6 million for her re-election campaign already and then leaked favorable facts about

Sen. Heidi Heitkamp Michael Vosburg / Forum Photo Editor

Heidi Heitkamp Blasted in the New York Times for Being “Uninterested in Sexism and Misogyny”

Here in North Dakota junior Senator Heidi Heitkamp has made a really big deal about the issue of human trafficking. See this interview as evidence of her passion for the issue. Heitkamp’s concern is justified. Human trafficking is an awful thing worthy of scrutiny and action by policymakers. So it’s interesting, then, that during a

Officer Jernimo Yanez points his firearm at Philando Castile during a traffic stop in Minnesota Screencapture via YouTube

The NRA Needs to Speak Out on Philando Castille

On Friday a jury acquitted law enforcement officer Jeronimo Yanez of manslaughter charges after he shot Philando Castile to death in Minnesota. After the verdict was made public so too was dashcam video of the shooting, which you can watch below. I’ll warn you that it’s quite graphic and harrowing to watch. It’s deeply troubling

Gov.Doug Burgum addressing a joint session of the North Dakota Legislature in January, 2017. Photo by Tom Stromme / Bismarck Tribune

Legislature Opts to Sue Governor Doug Burgum Over Vetoes

A meeting of the Legislative Management Committee today voted to proceed with litigation against Governor Doug Burgum over vetoes issued earlier this year, though there will be more meetings and votes before anything gets filed. “We need to make a statement that the governor was out of bounds on this,” Senate Majority Leader Rich Wardner

North Dakota Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem asks for the NDGOP endorsement for governor during the during the NDGOP convention Saturday, April 2, 2016 in Fargo. Michael Vosburg / Forum Photo Editor

Stenehjem Joins North Dakota to Group of 13 States Threatening to Sue California Over Coal Divestment Initiative

UPDATE: ND Insurance Commissioner Jon Godfread has signed on to a similar effort opposing California’s push. You can read his press release here, and the letter here. In California, Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones has begun what he’s calling the Climate Risk Carbon Initiative. Arguing that because of climate change investments in fossil fuel energy production are

Stenehjem Protects the Separation of Powers

“All sides are gonna be pissed at Wayne,” a political friend texted me yesterday upon news of Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem’s opinion (see below) on the legality of some of Governor Doug Burgum’s vetoes issued earlier this year. “Nobody got everything they wanted.” That’s true. As you can see from this key excerpt, Stenehjem upheld

James Hodgkinson of Belleville, Illinois is seen in this undated photo posted on his social media account. Social Media via REUTERS

The Partisan Shooting of Rep. Scalise Is a Relatively New Thing in the History of American Political Violence

“Try to find the humanity in the people you disagree with.” That’s what I wrote in my Sunday print column this week. The subject, of course, was the shooting of Rep. Steve Scalise and three others. In the New York Times today Ross Douthat has some thoughts on why the motivations of James Hodgkinson, the

Elections, Not Political Deal Making, Should Earn Democrats Control of Committees

North Dakota Democrats hold just 22 seats out of 141 in the state Legislature. Because of this, during the regular legislative session, Democrats chair no committees. In fact, they don’t really have enough elected members of the Legislature to even cover all committee assignments. That’s as it should be. If Democrats want to control committees

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