On Monday night the Fargo City Commission voted 4 -1 to give raises to the city’s police and firefighters (as well as about 30 percent of the city’s workforce).

The cost to taxpayers is a relatively modest $473,812.

I’ll not quibble with that outcome. The raises seem reasonable, and it behooves local governments like Fargo to remain competitive when it comes to compensating critical public employees.

What I’m trying to say is that these folks deserve the raises.

But something inappropriate happened at the city commission meeting, and it happens far too often in North Dakota politics: While the elected officials were debating the pay raises, they looked out at an audience full of cops in full uniform, some of them even wearing body armor.

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