« News & Views with Joel Heitkamp

What If? (Written by: Joel Heitkamp)

by Amy Iler

Why do we expect inaction?  Why do we - as North Dakotans - expect inaction?  In fact, not only do we expect inaction, we hire & encourage the people who give us the inaction. 

Let me give you some examples:

What if the head of The North Dakota Department of Transportation said we need more money for next springs western North Dakota roads?

What if the head of The North Dakota Highway Patrol said our fines are ridiculous and do not deter anyone?

What if the head of The North Dakota Oil and Gas Division said more employees were needed to oversee and regulate ... and, if not that, the oil industry needs to be slowed down?  

What if the head of The North Dakota Department of Public Instruction said Head Start is important and, to make the case, would go directly to the people of North Dakota? 

What if the The North Dakota State Board of Higher Education said UND and NDSU will not raise tuition (oh, and as a friendly reminder, don't forget your job is to educate - not wine and dine)? 

What if the head of The North Dakota Department of Human Services said North Dakota is leaving people behind and we have the means to help? 

What if the North Dakota Insurance Commissioner said I am going to focus on making a law work instead of hurting people it could help for political reasons?

What if The North Dakota Legislature said we are no longer another small state - our legislature needs to meet every year to adjust and deal with our budget?

In my opinion, those questions would mean we had hired real leaders.  The kind of leaders who may only win with 57% of the vote (instead of 70%), but they would lead.  

What if?