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Truckers and their supporters continue to protest COVID-19 vaccine mandates in Ottawa
People holding Canadian flags protest at the Ottawa International Airport, as truckers and their supporters continue to protest against coronavirus disease (COVID-19) vaccine mandates, in Ottawa on February 10, 2022.
PATRICK DOYLE/REUTERS

Plain Talk: Sen. Kevin Cramer talks Canadian trucker protests, trucking regulations, and the Chinese Olympics

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MINOT, N.D. — What started as a small protest of truckers upset about the Canadian government's vaccine mandates has turned into a full-on international movement. Now demonstrators have blocked multiple crossings between the United States and Canada, and it's having a deleterious impact on commerce between our nations at a time when we hardly need it.

Not one of us needs prices to go any higher, do we?

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“We felt it important to voice together our concerns about this measure,” said North Dakota Farmers Union President Mark Watne in a statement his group released jointly with the NDFB. “At Farmers Union, we have longstanding policy that opposes term limits because they are a limitation on the rights of citizens to choose and elect their public officials. Term limits also put more power into the hands of professional lobbyists and career bureaucrats.”

On this episode of Plain Talk, Sen. Kevin Cramer talks about the protests, why they're happening, and how they could be stopped.

"What they're asking for is so simple," Cramer said, noting that all the Canadian government would have to do to end the demonstrations is lift the mandate.

He's got a point. Over 251 million Americans, or about 87.4% of adults, have at least one shot of the COVID-19 vaccine. In Canada, 88.3% of citizens over the age of 5 have been vaccinated. Among the truckers, about 90% of those who regularly cross the border are vaccinated according to the Canadian Trucking Alliance.

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Is this really still about public health? Or is it about different factions with entrenched positions being unwilling to give an inch?

Cramer also talks about trucking regulations taking effect in the United States which have the potential to cause more problems for our national supply lines, and the ongoing Olympic Games in China.

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 rport@forumcomm.com. Click here to subscribe to his Plain Talk podcast.
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