Plain Talk: Cramer talks Russia, student loan forgiveness, Mund and Becker

On this episode of Plain Talk, Sen. Kevin Cramer weighs in on being banned from Russia, President Joe Biden's student loan forgiveness, and the emergence of high-profile independent candidates in

Kevin Cramer
North Dakota Congressman Kevin Cramer speaks to a group of Microsoft employees during a town hall meeting held at the company's Fargo campus.
Dave Olson/The Forum
We are part of The Trust Project.

Minot, N.D. — Prominent North Dakota Democrats made a real "mess of things" when they took the extraordinary step of jettisoning their U.S. House candidate, Mark Haugen, in favor of independent candidate Cara Mund.

That's what Sen. Kevin Cramer said on this episode of Plain Talk.

"They were very presumptuous about Cara," Cramer added, arguing that they don't know much about her outside of her views on abortion. The Republican also argued that the move may inhibit future efforts to recruit candidates to the Democratic-NPL ticket.

"Now all they have to offer is disloyalty," Cramer said.

Mund's entrance into North Dakota's U.S. House race against incumbent Republican Kelly Armstrong was just one topic Cramer and I covered on this episode.


We also discussed another independent candidate, Rick Becker, who is challenging incumbent John Hoeven, Cramer's colleague in the Senate. Cramer praised Becker as representing an important part of the NDGOP, but took a dim view of his chances. "I don't think he's going to do as well as he thinks he does," Cramer said.

Becker had promised to respect the vote of delegates at the NDGOP convention, where Hoeven won the party's endorsement, but has gone back on that promise to challenge Hoeven in the general election. Cramer said that move has hurt Becker. "I've talked to a number of Republican supporters of Rick Becker and they're disappointed," he said.

Cramer also spoke about getting banned by the Russian government, the European energy crisis brought on in no small part by the war in Ukraine and what Americans can do to help, President Joe Biden's student loan forgiveness.

Want to get every episode of Plain Talk delivered directly to you? Consider subscribing, for free, on the podcast platform of your choice .

Click here to subscribe to the Plain Talk Podcast!
Serious questions of policy in our society should be settled through the flawed, frustrating, and often extremely protracted process of democracy and not judicial fiat.
Burgum talks budget and tax cuts with Rob Port and Ben Hanson on this episode of Plain Talk.
When we talk about North Dakota's general fund spending, we talk about less than half of the dollars state lawmakers appropriated. We need a better way to measure state spending.
North Dakota judges are already required to report deviations to minimum sentencing guidelines, and there have been just two since 2016.
If there's some red line that Trump could cross, some depth he could stoop to in words or action, that would cost him the support of North Dakota's delegation, he doesn't seem to have crossed it
"Do we want conservatism to be seen as a pragmatic set of principles for balancing our collective need for a government with the rights of individuals? Or the gospel of some fire-and-brimstone

Opinion by Rob Port
Rob Port is a news reporter, columnist, and podcast host for the Forum News Service. He has an extensive background in investigations and public records. He has covered political events in North Dakota and the upper Midwest for two decades. Reach him at Click here to subscribe to his Plain Talk podcast.
What to read next
"You love who you love."
Columnist Roxane B. Salonen writes, "Only time can heal the great loss we feel when our loved ones die—and even that, imperfectly. But there is something deeper, and truer, than what we can hold in
Jenny Schlecht explains how a "where are you" call led to an evening of protecting barn cats and hunting raccoons.
Columnist Jim Shaw offers critical remarks after North Dakota Sens. John Hoeven and Kevin Cramer voted against the Respect for Marriage Act. "Hoeven and Cramer are using religion as a cover to