Roughrider Roundup – March 7, 2022

Happy Monday!

Dear Fellow Republicans, 

We wanted to provide you with a roundup of everything you might have missed from North Dakota’s great Republican leaders this past week. Please share with family and friends!

Perrie Schafer, NDGOP Chairman


SAVE THE DATE: The NDGOP Convention will take place April 1-2, 2022 in Bismarck, ND at the Bismarck Event Center. More information to come. 

Photo of the Week

Governor Doug Burgum proclaimed March 2, 2022, a Day of Prayer for the people of Ukraine as they defend against the attacks from Russia.
“North Dakota joins the international community in condemning this violence and the threats to innocent civilians in Ukraine and stands in support of the citizens of Ukraine and their sovereignty.”

His proclamation notes that many North Dakotans can trace their ancestral roots back to Ukraine. Adding that Ukraine and the U.S. share common values of freedom, democracy and the rule of law.
The Governor’s residence is lit in the blue and yellow colors of the Ukrainian flag on Wednesday night.

North Dakota

Nearly all GOP governors call on White House to reverse energy decisions, boost energy production
CBS News
“As governors [incl. Burgum], we call on President Biden to reverse his policies and restore America’s energy independence for our citizens as well as our allies abroad,” the governors said in a statement obtained exclusively by CBS News. “By removing his bans on new oil and gas development on federal lands, building the Keystone XL pipeline, and reinstating regulatory reforms to streamline energy permitting, we can protect our national energy security and sell to our friends rather than buy from our enemies—specifically Russia.”

North Dakota investment board to divest from Russian entities
The Bismarck Tribune
North Dakota’s State Investment Board on Thursday voted to divest public money from Russian entities amid the country’s invasion of Ukraine…Lt. Gov. Brent Sanford, who chairs the board, called Thursday’s special meeting on Russian investments “in light of the country’s continuing attacks on Ukraine.”…The state Board of University and School Lands has $9.7 million in Russia-based companies, or 0.16% of total investment assets, according to the governor’s office…State Treasurer Thomas Beadle, who serves on the land and investment boards, said the Land Board is “actively monitoring the situation and paying attention to how to deal with the situation accordingly.” 

Biden covers Ukraine, COVID, economy in State of the Union
Wahpeton Daily News
North Dakota Gov. Doug Burgum criticized the president’s “anti-oil” policies on home soil in a Tuesday release after the federal government failed to meet a mid-February deadline to publish a notice to hold an oil lease sale this quarter. “From the unsecured southern border to the underutilized oil fields of North Dakota, President Biden’s misguided policies continue to put U.S. citizens at risk and hold America back,” Burgum stated after Biden’s address. “Today’s news that the Biden administration has again failed to meet its obligation to hold a federal oil lease sale is further proof that this administration isn’t serious about U.S. energy security. The President needs to reverse his anti-oil policies and unleash American energy production to protect U.S. consumers and return our nation to a position where we can sell energy to our friends and allies instead of importing it from adversaries like Russia.”

Goehring asks EPA to back off on banned pesticide guidance; options for chemical disposal unclear
The Bismarck Tribune
North Dakota Agriculture Commissioner Doug Goehring has told federal regulators that the state doesn’t have the capacity to accept chlorpyrifos, a widely used pesticide that the Biden administration has banned on food crops and which became illegal this month. Goehring has asked the Environmental Protection Agency — and also North Dakota State University Extension — to stop guiding farmers and distributors to a state pesticide disposal program…The matter is EPA’s to clear up, according to Goehring.

ND’s Lt. Gov wants to see increased oil production to help lower gas prices
North Dakota Lieutenant Governor Brent Sanford wants to see increased production in The Bakken to get more oil supply to lower prices. “The main problem with not having enough drilling rigs in our community, in Western North Dakota is the lack of workforce. And, so, if you can’t hire the frack crews, then the drilling rigs can’t come because they can’t staff the frack jobs,” Sanford said.

North Dakota deer hunters in Unit 2B won’t be able to bait for deer next fall, Game and Fish says
The Dickinson Press
As expected, the North Dakota Game and Fish Department will implement a baiting ban for deer hunters next fall in Unit 2B along the Red River between Grand Forks and south of Fargo after chronic wasting disease was found in a whitetail buck shot in October during the youth deer season near Climax, Minnesota, on the east side of the river. Game and Fish traditionally implements baiting bans in units where CWD is detected or units that are near CWD-positive areas. Gov. Doug Burgum signed off on the baiting restrictions Tuesday, March 1, in the 2022-2023 Chronic Wasting Disease Proclamation.

Oil and gas industry puts focus on CO2 sequestration, Ukraine
Williston Herald
Sanford said he was grateful for the entrepreneurs and risk-takers in the oil and gas industry who led the fracking revolution and unlocked North Dakota’s vast energy resources. “Without you, we wouldn’t be talking about the Bakken at all,” he said. “How lucky are we to have this resource, especially at this time of international tension and conflict? “We should be selling energy to our friends and our allies versus asking our enemies – who are now doing what they’re doing in Ukraine – to produce more oil,” he emphasized. “It’s absolutely absurd.” Sanford said North Dakota is positioned to lead the world in developing new carbon markets. “We can take the lead and usher in a new phase of economic development in North Dakota with ag and energy partnering for these solutions,” he said.

Ag News 890
“The conference has historically focused on local foods but is expanding to reach more small businesses by offering educational sessions for both local food producers and Pride of Dakota members,” said Agriculture Commissioner Doug Goehring. “Participants will learn methods to reach more customers and will hear a variety of marketing strategies and business planning information.”

Inside Continental Resources’ $250 Million Foray into Carbon Capture
Yahoo Finance
Continental Resources Inc. unveiled a $250 million investment into a carbon capture and sequestration project in the Williston Basin on March 2 that its partners say, once in operation, will be the largest such carbon sequestration project in the world…Burgum explained that the Summit project is just the latest in carbon management efforts his state has supported, having been one of the first states in the country to capture and transport CO₂. “We’ve been capturing CO₂ in North Dakota since the 1980s and putting it in pipelines and shipping it up to Canada,” he said. “So, we know a little bit about CO₂ in North Dakota, but this is going to be the largest [project] of its kind. This project has the potential to capture and permanently store over 12 billion tons of carbon dioxide across that 2,000-mile pipeline. That’s like taking 2.6 million cars off the road.”

ND officials vote to stop pursuing $69 million in potential gas royalty payments
The Board of University and School Lands, which is more commonly known as the Land Board, voted to end their pursuit of $69 million dollars, which they had previously sought for energy development prior to August 2013. Governor Doug Burgum, who chairs the Land Board, said in a statement, “Pursuing these old, disputed royalty payments would continue to discourage needed investment in our oil and gas industry, risking significant tax revenues that support North Dakota schools, cities, counties, water infrastructure, research, outdoor recreation and the Legacy Fund.”

Discussions underway about ‘comprehensive tax reform’
Prairie Public Broadcasting
In his “State of the State” address, Gov. Doug Burgum said he wanted to work with legislators, as well as the state’s Office of Management and Budget, and the state Tax Department, on a plan to present to the 2023 Legislative session. Local governments are dependent upon property taxes. “If this is done correctly, local municipalities will remain whole through the process,” said Tax Commissioner Brian Kroshus. “It’s really looking at the resources available.” Kroshus said it will likely take re-balancing. “We have to look at all aspects of where revenues, tax dollars, are generated, how they’re allocated, and how do you re-balance that,” Kroshus said.

News Dakota
Agriculture Commissioner Doug Goehring is leading the development of a task force composed of county weed officers, North Dakota State University research and Extension officials, members from commodity groups, agriculture associations, commodity processing facilities, agribusiness and agronomists in order to best manage noxious weeds across the state…“Agriculture operates with inherent risk,” Goehring said. “We want to help mitigate some of the risk with best management practices in as many areas as feasible.”

Washington, D.C.

Sen. Cramer Statement on Virtual Meeting with Ukrainian President
U.S. Senator Kevin Cramer (R-ND), member of the Senate Armed Services Committee and Senate Ukraine Caucus, issued the following statement after a virtual meeting with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky this morning: “Today we heard a direct appeal from President Zelensky to do more to aid the freedom-loving people of Ukraine in Vladimir Putin’s war. At a minimum, the United States needs to be doing everything it can from a sanctions standpoint to choke off any capital funding Putin’s thuggery and aggression. This is a very real foreign policy, economic, and humanitarian crisis. Let’s stand together not only in unity but prayer as well.” Senator Cramer also sent a letter to President Biden pressing him to change course on his failing energy policy.

WATCH: Sen. John Hoeven on WNBA star Brittney Griner being detained in Russia: ‘They better be very careful’
Fox News
The North Dakota senator discusses the basketball star as well as pressures on the White House to cut off Russian oil imports.

Hoeven’s bill good for ND, promotes energy independence from Russia
Minot Daily News
To promote American energy dominance to offset the Russian imports, on Thursday, Republican Sen. John Hoeven, in a bicameral effort, introduced the American Energy Independence from Russia Act in the U.S. Senate. At the same time, it would require the Biden administration to submit a plan to Congress within 30 days that provides an energy security evaluation and risk assessment, along with a plan to leverage America’s oil and gas resources to offset imports from Russia. Hoeven’s legislation would take immediate action to encourage increased U.S. production including authorizing the construction and operation of the Keystone XL pipeline that Biden shut down when he entered office, causing thousands of workers to lose their jobs.

War in Ukraine complicates path home for Groszhans
Sen. Kevin Cramer spoke with the State Department and the Ukrainian Ambassador this week about Groszhans. “We are still actively working to get Kurt out of Ukraine,” Cramer said.

Cramer, other Senators push for end to Russian oil shipments to US
U.S. Senator Kevin Cramer, a member of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee, has joined Senators Joe Manchin and Lisa Murkowski in introducing the Ban Russian Energy Imports Act, legislation to prohibit the importation of Russian crude oil, petroleum, petroleum products, liquefied natural gas and coal…Cramer said the import strategy puts American national security at risk and supports Vladimir Putin’s ability to stay in power.

Oil and gas industry puts focus on CO2 sequestration, Ukraine
Williston Herald
U.S. Sen. John Hoeven, R-N.D., said, “Just as North Dakota cracked the code to economically extract oil and gas from Bakken shale, we will crack the code on CO2 sequestration,” Thanks to EERC research, long-range planning, geology ideal for carbon storage and environmental regulations already in place, Hoeven said North Dakota is one of two states in the nation where large-scale carbon sequestration can occur. He expects some of the CO2 to be used for enhanced oil recovery in the Bakken shale formation….Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and its potential impact on North Dakota and world energy markets was also a topic of great interest. U.S. Sen. Kevin Cramer, R-N.D., was in Ukraine just six weeks ago for an energy roundtable meeting. “We have a moment right now – with everything from carbon capture, utilization and storage to nuclear energy to cleaning up coal – because Europe is learning a really tough lesson the really hard way,” he said. “We have the story to tell,” Cramer continued. “North Dakota tells it better than anybody because we have the experts, the people who are naturally attuned to sustainability. Congressman Kelly Armstrong, R-N.D., echoed and amplified Cramer’s message. “We’re not going to feed the world with rooftop gardens in the Bronx,” he said. “We’re not going to power the world with rainbows and unicorns. “We are going to use products North Dakota has, whether it’s corn, whether it’s soybeans, whether it’s coal, whether it’s natural gas or whether it’s wind,” Armstrong added. “But the federal government shouldn’t mandate how we do it. We should allow our communities, our members of business, our workers and our citizens to determine that future.”

Biden covers Ukraine, COVID, economy in State of the Union
Wahpeton Daily News
U.S. Sen. John Hoeven (R-N.D.) criticized Biden’s spending and government involvement. “Now is a time for strength. In America, our strength comes from empowering individuals and standing by our Constitution’s principles, like the rule of law, not by putting more government in control of our lives. The Biden administration is taking our nation in the wrong direction. Tonight, the president outlined his commitment to expanding government, including increasing spending and more regulations,” Hoeven stated. U.S. Sen. Kevin Cramer (R-N.D.) condemned the president’s “weakness” and labeled Biden as “unserious.” “We are facing skyrocketing inflation and soaring gas prices not seen since the Carter Administration. The similarities don’t stop there, Biden’s foreign policy strategy of weakness and appeasement botched the withdrawal from Afghanistan and emboldened Vladimir Putin to invade freedom-loving Ukraine,” Cramer stated.

ND’s delegates respond to Biden’s State of the Union
“One thing that never came up that I think is really important is, we’re $30 trillion in debt. We’re seeing the highest inflation we’ve seen in forty years. And it was essentially doubling down on the government giving people free stuff, and I think that’s a real problem,” said Representative Kelly Armstrong.

Senators in both parties urge Biden admin to grant deportation protections for Ukrainian nationals in US
Fox News
Republican and Democratic senators urged the Biden administration this week to grant protections from deportation to Ukrainians already in the country in response to the ongoing Russian invasion of Ukraine. More than 40 senators, led by Sens. Rob Portman, R-Ohio, Dick Durbin, D-Ill., Bob Menendez, D-N.J., and Kevin Cramer, R-N.D., wrote to President Biden calling for Ukrainian nationals already in the country to be given Temporary Protected Status (TPS.)

GOP accuses White House of diverting infrastructure funding to ‘woke’ agenda
The Washington Times
GOP lawmakers say the tactic is likely to deceive state and local officials into thinking that some policies are mandated, rather than just encouraged. They say that federal bureaucrats like Mr. Buttigieg are using the federal government’s weight to lend the perception of authority on matters where it is lacking. “It almost appears designed to create some of that confusion,” said Sen. Kevin Cramer, North Dakota Republican.

North Dakota’s congressional delegation calls for more domestic energy production, ban of Russian oil purchases
While pushing for more production of goods and services in America during his State of the Union Address, President Biden did not include oil and gas, which is one of the biggest concerns for North Dakota’s largest industry. “Give the greenlight. Send the right market signals. Produce in the United States of America where we not only produce better, and with much higher labor standards and much higher environmental standards,” said Senator Kevin Cramer, R-ND. On Tuesday, republican senators introduced legislation to ban the purchase of Russian oil. North Dakota Senator John Hoeven, R-ND added that the White House needs to change their ways to take advantage of domestic resources. “The Interior Department needs to immediately end the leasing moratorium and hold previously postponed lease sales, both onshore and offshore. We need to expand our energy infrastructure to ensure efficient delivery to consumers. This includes approving the Keystone XL pipeline,” said Hoeven. That sentiment is also being pushed by house republicans. “Allow this to go back and let us do what we were doing so well until the last year. Developing American energy, allowing it to be utilized away from our adversaries,” said Representative Kelly Armstrong, R-ND.

ND congressional delegation, farm groups want improved WOTUS policy
Minot Daily News
“We need a Waters of the U.S. (WOTUS) definition that respects private property rights, like we put in place with the Navigable Waters Protection Rule (NWPR) under the Trump administration,” said Sen. John Hoeven. “At this point, the Biden administration has moved to repeal the NWPR and reinstate the pre-2015 WOTUS definition, which creates uncertainty for a range of industries, including agriculture, energy and construction, among others…Sen. Kevin Cramer said, “The current proposed rule was rolled out right before I hosted the EPA and U.S. Army Corps for their only in-person WOTUS listening session in Bismarck. North Dakotans were able to express their views about how the Obama Administration’s 2015 rule and the Biden proposal exceed the regulatory authority granted by the Clean Water Act. The current policy relies on an overly broad ‘significant nexus’ test, which will inevitably lead to federal bureaucrats expanding their jurisdiction over waters traditionally within the sole purview of states.

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