Four governor teams running in ND’s June primary

DuWayne Hendrickson

With North Dakota’s primary election less than two months away, political parties are announcing and promoting their candidates.

On Tuesday, June 9, Republican voters will determine a contested race for governor and lieutenant governor. There are uncontested Democratic and Libertarian races for the state offices.

Incumbent Gov. Doug Burgum and Lt. Gov. Brent Sanford are facing Michael Coachman and Joel Hylden for the endorsement of Republicans. Shelley Lenz and Ben Vig are running as Democrat-Nonpartisan League candidates. DuWayne Hendrickson and Joshua Voytek are running as Libertarian candidates.

“We know North Dakota leads the nation,” Gov. Burgum said when announcing his and Sanford’s re-election campaign in October 2019. “This is North Dakota’s time to look boldly to the future.”

Burgum and Sanford are running on a platform of “Real Leadership. Real Results.” The governor’s website promotes actions taken since his 2017 inauguration.

“Today North Dakota is one of the fastest growing economies in the nation with rising wages,” Burgum stated. “(We are) bringing renewed vibrancy to our towns, making North Dakota more attractive for entrepreneurs, job creators and young families. Now, North Dakota is one of the youngest states in America.”

Coachman announced his gubernatorial campaign in September 2019. He previously ran as an independent candidate for the North Dakota Secretary of State in 2018. Coachman’s 2020 platform is based on the U.S. Constitution.

“My vision for North Dakota is to follow the Constitution,” Coachman stated on his website. “That the Constitution should be the trademark of the office of the governor, that the U.S. Constitution will be established on all levels of government, that education should include classes on the U.S. Constitution and to establish a generation of patriots for our state and nation.”

Earlier in April, Lenz announced Vig as her running mate. A former North Dakota state representative, Vig served District 23 from 2007-2010.

“I was careful to choose someone who shares our North Dakota values,” Lenz stated. “(It) means having a deep understanding of our history, our economies, our culture and our land. Together we are committed to building the necessary bridges across the state, across the aisle and across generations to make government work for all North Dakotans.”

Hendrickson previously ran for North Dakota governor as an independent in the 2008 general election and as a Republican in the 2012 primary, the Minot Daily News reported in March. Since 2010, Hendrickson has frequently run as a Republican, whether in the primary or as a write-in general election candidate, for the U.S. House of Representatives.

“Elimination of the state’s property tax is a high priority (for Hendrickson),” the Minot Daily News reported. “His campaign also is promoting legalization of cannabis and term limits while opposing a refinery near Theodore Roosevelt National Park and a Roosevelt Library in Medora.”

The June election also includes races for:

• North Dakota’s seat in the U.S. House of Representatives, between Republican incumbent Kelly Armstrong, Democratic candidates Zach Raknerud and Roland Riemers and Libertarian candidate Steven Peterson

• State Auditor, between Republican incumbent Josh Gallion and Democratic candidate Patrick Hart

• State Treasurer, between Republican candidates Thomas Beadle and Dan Johnston and Democratic candidate Mark Haugen

• Insurance Commissioner, between Republican incumbent Jon Godfread and Democratic candidate Travisia Martin

• Public Service Commissioner, between Republican incumbent Brian Kroshus and Democratic candidate Casey Buchmann

• Superintendent of Public Instruction, between incumbent Kirsten Baesler and candidates Brandt Dick and Charles Tuttle

• North Dakota Supreme Court Justice Jon Jensen, running in an uncontested race; Jensen is also the state’s chief justice

North Dakota’s primary election will be held on the same day as elections in cities including Wahpeton. In Richland County, North Dakota, the primary will be held by mail.

Wahpeton and county residents should expect a ballot application coming from the North Dakota Secretary of State’s office. Once they’ve filled out and returned the application, they are set to receive a primary and/or local ballot from the Richland County Auditor’s office.

As elections approach, look to Daily News for coverage of campaigns, candidates and items under consideration in North Dakota, Minnesota and nationwide.

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