ND Abused Women Advocate Disputes Characterization Of Kevin Cramer “Tirade”


The coverage of Rep. Kevin Cramer’s alleged “tirade” against Native American tribes at a meeting of domestic violence advocates has been a little odd. Based on exactly one account of Cramer’s comments from a known political operative, posting on a left-wing website no less, it has been reported that Cramer supposedly “verbally abused” the group and made threats.

But there was more than just two people – Cramer and Merrick – in that room, and the only person who seems to have gotten an account of what happened from anyone but Cramer or Merrick is Chris Berg who read a statement from Janelle Moos, the Executive Director of the North Dakota Council of Abused Women.

According to Moos, Merrick’s characterization of Cramer’s statements wasn’t accurate.

Here’s the video of Berg’s interview with Cramer to which Merrick was invited but declined the opportunity to participate.

Valley News Live – KVLY/KXJB – Fargo/Grand Forks

I think Cramer has been done a real injustice on this issue. What were passionate comments about a disgusting issue – child rape, and the apparent attempts by tribal officials up to and including Merrick to cover it up – have been twisted into a “verbal assault.” As if an elected leader speaking out in an admittedly direct and blunt way about child abuse were somehow a bad thing.

What’s more, the media reported on Cramer’s comments using exactly one source with a history of left-wing activism. That’s just plain irresponsible journalism.

I would imagine that if I, a conservative blogger, came out of a closed-door meeting with Senator Heidi Heitkamp (of whom I am known to be quite critical) and claimed that she was verbally abusive I would expect reporters to rely on something more than my testimony. As well they should. Senator Heitkamp should get the benefit of the doubt in that scenario.

Rep. Cramer wasn’t afforded that, despite increasing evidence that Merrick’s account of what happened was exaggerated, at best.

Rob Port is the editor of SayAnythingBlog.com. In 2011 he was a finalist for the Watch Dog of the Year from the Sam Adams Alliance and winner of the Americans For Prosperity Award for Online Excellence. In 2013 the Washington Post named SAB one of the nation's top state-based political blogs, and named Rob one of the state's best political reporters.

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  • mikemc1970

    That’s just plain irresponsible journalism.

    And you expect responsible journalism from any leftist media source?

  • Thresherman

    This will die down and then resurface in the next election when Cramer will have to defend himself from this slander all over again. Because she is a minority woman, Merrick will claim victim status for her lying ways..

  • Tim Heise

    BERG IS WRONG. Outrage is what is needed in regards to violence against kids and women.

    I support Cramer even more now.

    • Betty

      If you were able to watch kind hearted woman it makes it even clearer why he was outraged. Being outraged and acting on it are two different things. Frankly more people should be outraged!

    • Lynn Bergman

      Right on! We should ALL be outraged by child abuse. An “act of rage” is not equivalent to “outrage”. One is an “out of control” physical act; the other is a controlled verbal reaction to such an act. Berg is revealing his immaturity by equating the two expressions. I have always wondered if he was a RINO, because of his circle of friends… now I know he is one.

  • NDConservative2011

    It appears that Congressman Cramer made an attempt to shock the tribal council into actually agreeing to do something to protect the children on their reservation.
    As a strong advocate of family values, Congressman Cramer has shown great concern for the abused children and women on the reservation.
    It is very unfortunate that his strong verbage is now overshadowing the the real problems of abuse and the cover up of same by the tribal council.
    The Fargo Forum and Grand Forks Herald in their successful attempt to make the Congressman appear to be the bad guy, took a political operative’s word as truth, and printed one side of the story. This is at best a case of “yellow journamism”. The editors of each of these so called newspapers should be ashamed of their actions as they lack all integrity as well as any common journalistic standards.

  • JoeMN

    The left envisions these tribal government child abuse enablers as a protected species.
    They cannot be questioned, hence the distraction

    Any harm they cause is simply collateral damage

  • devilschild

    I doubt this will be brought up in the next election. Miss Merrick trashed her own image, not Kevin Cramer’s, by over exaggerating the situation. If she needs work she should contact the AFL-CIO. They are looking to hire a Media Relations Officer…you know someone who twists the truth to serve the cause.

  • JackButler

    This accusation doesn’t have to be sold or even believed state wide, it just has to get out the vote on the reservation. Why do you think heidi is a senator today.

  • WOOF

    Cramer apologized and will continue to apologize,
    through the next election.
    Rep Cramer :
    “certain statements I recently made regarding my frustrations
    with VAWA were misunderstood.
    This may have been the result of my tone and rhetoric,
    better suited
    for active debate in Congress
    rather than in addressing the protectors
    our most vulnerable citizens.
    I apologize,”

  • http://www.facebook.com/odin.anderson.35 Odin Anderson

    The fact that she doesn’t show up to defend her accusations should speak for itself.
    Good job on bringing the facts to the public!

  • Jean

    Chris, are you crazy? I would be outraged if I heard someone tell about what has happened to the children and women. I don’t think you really know what the work “outraged” means. It certainly doesn’t mean he would do something to the women. You are not very bright.

    • SusanBeehler

      Child abuse is awful. Sometimes even our regular judicial system it is difficult to prove and remedy the situation. Representative Cramer spoke how he also was not comfortable with the “constitutionality” of VAWA, but the same due process he was speaking of is the “nature of the beast” in child abuse cases too. So the system does tend to lean toward protecting a possible victim http://www.startribune.com/local/west/201167751.html

  • Yogibare

    We see it so very often, and we now see it in Chris Berg: the guy is bending over backwards to avoid the appearance of questioning the conditions on the Rez. These people like Berg are walking on eggs lest they say something that even appears to question the behaviors on the Rez and people who run the Rez.

  • $16839045
  • SusanBeehler
  • Stuart

    More left wing assination of men..what do they define as hared toward men? MISANDRY for he political purpose of cause and effect . False sympathy and manufactured facts for political agendas. Osama Obama like Ted Kennedy stated is good at this tactic to incite the women in his network of talking points. Quite a community organizer huh? Not divisive though..he’s a real unitor at heart.

  • Drain52

    Jeez, Senator, stop groveling and blaming yourself. Your contrition is cutting no ice with Merrick anyway. Stand up like a man, defend yourself if you think she’s wrong or excessive, and stop running around like a dog with his tail between his legs. Merrick’s being a victim of violence is entirely irrelevant to her charges if they are false.