North Dakota Democrats Crying Over Spilled Milk


In what is perhaps the most obnoxious political stunt to date in the current legislative session, North Dakota Democrats pushed a bill (HB1421) to fund a federal program providing milk to school children during snack breaks with a state appropriation. It’s a very small program – just 6,000 kids would have qualified for it – and it would have been duplicative in that low-income school kids are already getting milk with their breakfasts.

But this wasn’t really about milk for school kids so much as political point scoring. “It’s time we as a Legislature stop focusing on on one percent, and put more focus on the two-percent or skim or chocolate,” Assistant Minority Leader Corey Mock told the Huffington Post, invoking the rhetoric of the Occupy Wall Street movement.

Democrats were quick to accuse Republicans of prioritizing tax relief for the oil industry over children, which is just plain stupid. Must Republicans approve of every new spending program for children before they support tax relief, lest they be accused of not being sufficiently for the children?

Democrat legislators now have milk cartons on their desks to collect coins to donate for milk. Which is just another stunt because little boxes on the floor of the ND house aren’t likely to collect a lot of spare change.

But, again, this isn’t about milk for kids. This is about petulant partisan politics perpetrated by a political party so thoroughly marginalized, so irrelevant to the governing process, that the most relevant thing they can do is to cry over spilled milk.

The legislative process should be about making calm, rational and responsible decisions about how to spend (or, in this case, not spend) the taxpayer’s dollars. Democrats, with their childish antics, do a disservice to that process.

But then, since they can’t win many elections, they aren’t really much of a part of that process anyway. And behaving this way all but ensures they won’t be a part of it any time in the near future.

Rob Port is the editor of 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.

Related posts

  • LegitSlater

    This program clearly discriminates against lactose-intolerant kids. The Republicans were simply following the liberal philosophy that if a few can’t have it then no one should be able to.

  • Tim Heise

    “petulant partisan politics perpetrated by a political party.” I like the Ps

  • sbark

    Didnt the Schools essentially get a windfall from the State with millions committed from the State budget……with no reform or reduction in their cut from local property taxes?
    … they get both…..
    and they cant take their time or “compassion” to take care of a small segment of kids without milk from one of those sources of money?
    …….or get someone on the phone and solicit local “investment” from the private sector if the matter is of that importance…………..maybe have the schools FBLA student group for example and make it a project

    Somehow “keep it local”… doesnt have to be dictated by the State Govt, because then at some point Mochelle Obama will add it to her Fed Programs….that is how govt works……and then all of sudden its a billion dollar nationwide projects.

    Liberalism is the easiest route one can take in life………it requires no ideas, no thought…… just requires spending other peoples money.

    • Somebodysomwhere

      Liberalism is the easiest route one can take in life………it requires no ideas, no thought…… just requires spending other peoples money.

      You hit the nail on the head.

      • SusanBeehler

        We certainly would not want to appear as supporting dairy farmers in our state, that is what the federal government is for, we support the oil men in our state not the farmer?

  • WOOF

    What fools these Teatards be.
    “North Dakota state Rep. Mike Schatz (R-New England), the Education
    Committee vice chairman, told HuffPost that he and other Republicans
    voted against the bill because students have the option of receiving
    milk from a federally subsidized breakfast program in schools. Children
    must currently pay for the second milk available at mid-morning breaks.”
    Penny wise and pound foolish politician.

    • SusanBeehler

      Let the FEDS pay because we do not know where that money comes from? Right or No I am so confused, who is the BIG government party?

  • borborygmi

    “But then, since they can’t win many elections, they aren’t really much of a part of that process anyway. And behaving this way all but ensures they won’t be a part of it any time in the near future.” Apparently the Conservatives are in the same boat.

  • Brad Carnes

    Why is there no mention here of the billion(s) of dollars the North Dakota state fund has right now is surplus due to the Oil fields? Why is there no mention here of the millions upon millions that this bipartison REPUBLICAN legislature passed in legislation to give even more tax breaks to those involved in the oil rich fields which by the way—are hurting the eco system of North Dakota? Please riddle me that Rob Port?

    • headward

      Surplus funds should be returned to the taxpayers not to fund additional welfare programs.
      What is hurting the eco system of ND? I see growth and opportunity for the young people of ND to stay in ND.

      • SusanBeehler

        Which taxpayers do you choose?

        • headward

          Taxpayers is who I choose. Over half of the nation doesn’t pay federal income tax. Half has taxation with representation but the other half has no taxation with representation.
          This is easy to find out where the surplus needs to go.

          • SusanBeehler

            So are you one who is drawing from the other half with your social security? Alot of property owners pay taxes without representation too. So you believe if you don’t pay taxes you should not be represented? Are you suggesting reinstating slavery?

          • headward

            Slavery is stealing the fruits of one’s labor. How much of a tax rate is not slavery since people don’t own their incomes?

    • The Whistler

      North Dakota has the highest wage growth in the nation. Why would we need a brand new welfare program?

      • WOOF

        Second graders have a very high unemployment rate, Stay in school kids.

        • The Whistler

          They should be in homes where the parents love them and are willing to take care of them rather than use them as a device to get more welfare.

          • WOOF

            “Which of you, if his son asks for bread, will give him a stone?”

          • The Whistler

            That’s exactly why I work, to provide a better life for my kids.

          • SusanBeehler

            You work?

          • The Whistler

            on occasion. My family is well taken care of.

          • SusanBeehler

            Yeah and the parents should just stay at home and milk the cows and then they can have all the milk they want. Why do parents hate their children?

          • The Whistler

            Actually most people are better off getting a job and using the money they earn to buy from someone who specializes in producing what we need or want. Milk is one of those things. I wish more parents loved their kids and were willing to work for them.

        • SusanBeehler

          Why don’t they get a job?

    • SusanBeehler

      Brad you must have not gotten the memo during the property tax discussion, there is no money for propety tax elimination. Opps we just found it, now lets give it to the oil industry because the people voted down property tax elimination because they like paying taxes so we can give it to the oil industry, because they are our “guests” in our state! We certainly would not want to help families, let the residents of North Dakota pay for the OIL empire we are trying to build, now be polite to our “guests”.

      • headward

        Are we just slaves to the state? By lowering taxes you’re saying that “give it to the oil industry,” but this is only saying that it will lower their tax rates. I know that you’re not one that likes to follow the constitution but like the 2nd amendment, the 13th is quite clear.

  • Roy_Bean

    Once again, the democrats are trying to buy votes by being Santa Claus. They want to tax the oil patch to hand out free milk.

    • SusanBeehler

      Yeah because it is the democrats who controls the majority in our North Dakota legislature, and they stand by each Republican and tell them to push YES for oil no for farmers? Right or No I am so confused, who is the BIG government in our state?

      • Kevin Flanagan

        These people are RINOs; I have the tax bills that prove it.

  • The Whistler

    So Mock is a partisan hack. Who would have guessed?

    • camsaure

      And he is a grandstanding punk to boot.

  • Jeff

    Same pathetic old tactics Dems have used for years. Republicans are taking milk away from kids to give money to big oil companies. Just like Republicans want to poison you water, throw your grandma off the cliff, and take all your mony and give it to the rich. The lies will never end.

    • SusanBeehler

      We have the federal government to support our farmers, as North Dakotans why would we want to start supporting our own?

      • headward

        Or we have the free markets decide what farmers plant.

  • Dallas

    Rob: Looks like some of that high fat, whole milk is clogging your arteries. this is simple. Either the 6,000 kids get milk or they don’t. Republicans and ‘udders’ like you say no but are pushing a tax cut for the wealthiest among us.
    P.S. Pun was intended

    • Rob

      The K-12 budget will be increasing by half a billion in the next biennium thanks to a Republican legislature and a Republican governor.

      You’re a bit of an idiot.

  • Bruce

    1 and 3 parent cant afford the school lunch program….what bs…..get a 2nd job then …how irresponsible!!! Quit whining and take care of your own kids!!!!!

    • Opinion8ed

      Bruce… You get it.. Thank you