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Letters to the Editor ...

November 2, 2012
Pierce County Tribune

Perry Ostmo

Sharon, N.D.

Democrats believe Healthcare is a right. Republicans view it as a priviledge. It's another stark difference in ideology. This is an extremely important election about the direction of this country. It's an election about Principles, morals and ethics. Obamacare is long overdue in this country. There are too many good parts to it to repeal and start over. If they were capable of working in a bipartisan order they could fix the parts that need it. Why are politicians so fiercely against it? If they repeal it don't expect it to reappear again. The Frontier amendment was a once-in-a-lifetime shot at fixing the discrepancies in reimbursements to ND medical facilities taking medicare patients. Who represents the 45,000 North Dakotans without health insurance, including 11,000 children in recent statistics. Who represents the 153,000 North Dakotans with pre-existing conditions or the 32,000 ND families facing major medical expenses exceeding their caps. The Democrats do!! 62% of all bankruptcies in this country are due to health care expenses. Kevin Cramer has made repeal of this legislation his #1 priority. Dalrymple, Berg, and Hoeven, along with the entire Republican Party are driven to do this! Driven by pure GREED! The more one has the more one needs! This, by the party of Religion, the Religious Right- which in reality is ~10% truly righteous and well meaning, and 90% selfish, self-serving, and the self-righteous. Only one party uses religion to further their agenda-most of which is unchristian-like. I resent the use of my religion by pretenders and part-timers for their self-serving agenda. Too many voters in this state are deceived and lied to by politicians and the one-sided media in much of this state. Do your duty and vote. Vote your conscience.

Perry Ostmo

Sharon, N.D.

It was written with a mandate. Raised taxes. Was upheld by the Supreme Court. Defended by..Wayne Stehnjem. Strongly supported by Rick Berg, Jack Dalrymple, and signed into law by John Hoeven. Was it written for the needy, the sick, the poor? No! This bill, HB1518 (2005) the Wheat Tax Bill raised the wheat tax by 60%, with 40% of this increase going to two highly partisan commodity groups- the Grain Growers and the Durum Growers. This bill gives them an estimated $1,000,000 per biennium with absolutely no accountability. It was fiercely opposed by the Farmer's Union and 90% of those farmers present in the large packed hearing room in Bismarck. Farmers had NO vote on this bill. This was shoved down our throats by a Republican, mostly urban supermajority. So for Berg, Hoeven, Dalrymple, Cramer, and the rest of your hypocritical party, which mandates are you for? The ones written for: the people in need, the sick, the poor, the children, the uninsured, or just the ones for political gain? Republicans aren't against tax increases, just the ones they would pay. Do your duty and VOTE!! Vote your conscience!

Paul Nelson

Fargo, N.D.

There is a very important position that compels North Dakota voter attention during this election year. I am referring to the Superintendent of Public Instruction. What could be more important than the election of an individual who oversees the education of our children and the entire ND public school system? The Department of Public Instruction will have a new Superintendent for the first time in the past 26 years. The DPI is one of the largest departments in our State with a budget exceeding $1.5 billion. The Superintendent also serves on several boards that are important to North Dakota, including the State Land Board. There is a clear choice between the two candidates. Kirsten Baesler has attained her Master's and Bachelor's degrees in Education, and has worked for more than 21 years in public education. Her work during those two decades has focused on the philosophy that each child is provided the opportunity to prosper and flourish. I urge everyone to review the qualifications of the two candidates before casting this important vote.

Carol M. Siegert

Hunter, N.D.

For decades, Medicare has paid our providers in North Dakota far less that other states. Some rural hospitals are on the verge of closing. What about the challenges recruiting providers to work in a state where they will make less salary. That is what you call a challenge especially for rural health care facilities!

While in Congress, Senator Dorgan and Congressman Pomeroy and current Senator Conrad fought to close that gap. After years of trying, finally there is a provision in the Affordable Care Act to level the field when it comes to Medicare reimbursement. The Frontier State Amendment means an additional $52 million per year for our hospitals and $16 million per year for our doctors.

Kevin Cramer keeps saying the Affordable Care Act is bad for North Dakota. Why? I can agree that parts of ACA needs some adjustments, however I think it would be huge mistake to repeal, especially the Frontier State Amendment.

I have known and worked with Pam Gulleson before she was a state Legislator. Pam's priorities have always been for the betterment of North Dakota and Pam supports the Frontier State Amendment. Pam's opponent prefers special interest groups!

North Dakota we need Pam Gulleson to represent us in Congress!

Jack Reich

Zap, N.D.

While a hastily written bill did not make it through the last session, the North Dakota legislature has a strong record of enacting legislation that improves the lives of animals.

For example, in the 2011 session, the North Dakota legislature created a stewardship specialist position at North Dakota State University to work with the state's animal caretakers on a variety of stewardship and animal welfare topics. This is the first position of its type in the nation and other states are looking to North Dakota to pattern their programs after ours. Dr. Gerald Stokka, D.V.M., currently serves in this role and, as a lifelong North Dakota rancher, I am eager to learn more about stewardship from Dr. Stokka.

In the 2009 session, the legislature approved funding for the department of agriculture to hire a field investigator to investigate complaints of animal mistreatment. Justin Maddock has worked in this capacity since 2010 and reports to the state veterinarian.

Years before that, the North Dakota Legislature saw fit to create the North Dakota Board of Animal Health.

These are proactive steps that improve the lives of North Dakota animals and help animal owners improve at the same time.

It is disappointing and downright deceptive when proponents of Measure 5 say that the legislature has "done nothing" to improve the plight of animals. Improving the lives of animals doesn't come by doling out felonies and banning animal ownership. It comes from a comprehensive approach to educate and inform animal caretakers.

In the 2013 session, legislators will have a humane treatment of animals bill to rally around one that addresses the most heinous crimes AND abusive acts that occur more frequently in this state like starvation, hoarding and abandonment. What makes this bill different or better than the ones that came before it? This time, it comes with the backing of animal shelter workers, ranchers, veterinarians, the state veterinarian's office and the Ag Commissioner, who have sat down to hash out the details of the law and work out the bugs. The legislative solution unlike the ballot initiative will protect all North Dakota animals and responsible animal owners, while punishing bad actors. Read it at

I have confidence in the North Dakota Legislative process it is one of the most open and forthright processes in the nation, where every bill gets its day in front of a committee. That's why I'm voting "NO" on Measure 5 and putting my support behind the legislative solution.

Marlene Kouba

Regent, N.D.

The election will soon be here and some are still wondering how to vote. It is really quite simple.

The Democratic Party now supports abortion, gun control, gay marriage, increased regulations, expanded government control, less military, sharing your income, higher taxes, are against fossil fuels and the U.S. Senate has not passed a budget in four years. Why do Democrats talk about bipartisanship and compromise when they only want Republicans to switch to their vision?

The Republican Party supports pro-life, private enterprise, Constitutional rights, Christian values, less regulation, strong national security, energy policy, less taxes and the U.S. House passed a budget that the Senate won't review.

If a candidate, like Gulleson and Heitkamp who have had over $3 million in ads, are independent thinkers, then why are they on the Democrat ticket? When candidates are elected, they will follow the party leader on key issues. In the ND legislature, the Democrats meet regularly and probably discuss how to vote whereas the Republicans rarely meet so their officials can vote according to the wishes of their constituency. It is similar in Washington.

Some say they vote for the person. However that person votes the party line so you better check to see if that party has your values. Splitting the ticket is splitting those values.

If you like things the way they are, vote Democrat. If not, vote Republican. Others won't have a chance. Some say they aren't into politics but if you pay taxes, you are involved so vote for one with your principles.

If you don't vote, quit your grumbling as you will be governed by those who do.

We seem to have a Pinocchio President with others following his lead. Therefore I support Romney, Dalrymple, Cramer and Berg because they share my values. What are yours?



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