THAT REMINDS ME WITH MARILYN HAGERTY: ‘Consummate legislator’ plies trade in 1987Rep. Earl Strinden, a Republican Grand Forks legislator, was at loggerheads with Democratic Gov. George Sinner 25 years ago.
By: Marilyn Hagerty, Grand Forks Herald
Rep. Earl Strinden, a Republican Grand Forks legislator, was at loggerheads with Democratic Gov. George Sinner 25 years ago.
The Herald reprinted a column from the Jamestown (N.D.) Sun, which read:
“Rep. Earl Strinden has revealed his plan to make North Dakota solvent again. It made headlines because it is a sweeping proposal to cut more state spending — $61 million more. What the proposal lacks to specifics it makes up for in hidden agenda.
“Without ever uttering the phrase ‘hidden taxes,’ Strinden has introduced the concept with a grace and skill that would make Machiavelli smile in approval.
“Strinden may not be a master of miracles, but he is a master of the public appearance. He says only so much. He resists being fully forthcoming. He dwells in the realm of hidden agenda and knows every leaf of paper in his notebook. In short, Strinden does his own homework and does it well. He is an expert in his own time and place.
“His grand plan to slice even more from a bare-bones budget proposed by the governor is not so much a real detailed alternative to the George Sinner fiscal road map as it is a political lever applied to a process Strinden dearly loves.
“Those who watch him in action say the man is a consummate legislator.
“The talent applied here on the budget issue is impressive; if it shatters the false economy currently binding the Legislature’s debate, it will be a master stroke of political craft well used on the public’s behalf.
“If it fails, we are all the poorer for it.”
Twenty-five years ago, on Valentine’s Day, North Dakota Sen. Kent Conrad married Lucy Calautti. She had managed his “miracle victory” over Republican Mark Andrews.
“When you can come through a campaign and still be in love, you can come through anything,” Conrad said.
The two had been dating for three years.
About 100 friends attended the wedding in Bismarck.
It was also in February 1987 that the UND men’s basketball team defeated the Bison of North Dakota State University in Fargo. For UND, it was the sixth straight win.
Coach Dave Gunther said he
didn’t have any special information about the Bison. “The kids just got the job done,” he said in his usual, succinct manner.
On Feb. 8, 1987, the UND men’s hockey team captured the Western Collegiate Hockey Association title and the fabled McNaughton Cup with a win over the Minnesota-Duluth Bulldogs.
Tony Hrkac, who was playing for UND, was described as a complete player by Herald Sports Editor Virgil Foss. Ed Belfour was ranked with the best goal tenders. Bob Joyce scored six goals in an 11-2 triumph over Michigan Tech. He set a record with 52 goals that year.
Other significant news in February 1987 was the vote by the North Dakota Senate not to turn the UND Medical School into a two-year institution. “That,” said Tim Fought in a Herald editorial, “would have closed it.”
He said the 32-19 vote indicated statewide support.
Fought also commented on the action of Sen. Wayne Stenehjem, R-Grand Forks.
Stenehjem withdrew a bill to allow retail shopping on Sunday from Thanksgiving to Christmas. Fought said, “It was a nice try to compromise on the Sunday agency issue, but it didn’t satisfy either side.”
A common variety of influenza made its way into Red River Valley schools 25 years ago. Out of 850 students, Red River High School had 100 students absent one day and 124 the next.
Names in the news 25 years ago:
- Don Miller was presented the Service to Mankind Award by the Sertoma Club. Miller was chairman and CEO of Community National Bank.
In 1985, he won the Chamber of Commerce Henry Havig Award. And he was Grand Forks Boss of the Year award winner in 1968.
- Gene Martin, who taught at Schroeder Junior High, was selected for a spot on the State Higher Board of Education. He was a former state legislator.
- The Elwyn B. Robinson Department of Special Collections in the UND Chester Fritz Library accepted papers of U.S. District Court Judge Ronald Davies. He was the judge temporarily assigned to the Eastern District of Arkansas who handed down the decision on racial integration of Central School in Little Rock.