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Port: Governor Burgum may be salty about it, but lawmakers are right to sue over vetoes

Governor Doug Burgum opens North Dakota's 65th legislative assembly TOM STROMME/Bismarck Tribune

State lawmakers announced today that they’ll be filing a lawsuit challenging some of the vetoes issued by Governor Doug Burgum targeting bills they passed during their session earlier this year.

We knew this was coming. Senate Majority Leader Rich Wardner told me back in June that lawmakers needed just one more vote to move forward with a legal action, adding that Burgum had engaged in “selective deletion.”

But Burgum, in a press release, said the lawsuit isn’t “a prudent use of taxpayer dollars.”

“As I’ve stated before, the intent of these vetoes was to protect executive branch authority, preserve the separation of powers and prevent spending of scarce state resources without full legislative review,” Burgum said. “While we don’t believe this lawsuit to be a prudent use of taxpayer dollars, we will respond accordingly to any legal action that attempts to infringe on executive branch authority. In the meantime, we remain squarely focused on reinventing government and being as efficient as possible with taxpayer dollars as we carry out the duties of the executive branch.”

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