U.S. SENATOR FOR NORTH DAKOTA
Heitkamp is in a challenging position. She is a Democrat in a red state, that has increasingly grown more conservative over the last decade. North and South Dakota used to have four Democratic senators, and now Heitkamp is the last Democratic senator standing.
Consequently, she - much like Joe Manchin - have had to commit to a fine balancing act of supporting Democratic positions, balanced with the more conservative inclinations of her state. This has put her out of line with the more progressive growth of national Democrats outside of North Dakota.
Our hope is to reinforce that despite her sporadic conservative position, Heitkamp is still an asset in her position, and the best hopes for Democrats to retain the seat. While she currently ranks as the third most conservative Senator amongst Senate Democrats, she has a consistent 100% ranking with Planned Parenthood, NARAL, Human Rights, American Library Association, and a 70% with ACLU. She always votes in favor of women’s rights and healthcare, and that’s an important distinction, given the continued assault on healthcare, the appointment of Charmaine Yeost to HHS, and the appointment of Neil Gorsuch to SCOTUS.
Our hope is to also reinforce that given the rapid gains of the GOP in North Dakota - Trump won by 36 points, Sen. John Hoeven won reelection by 62 points, and Republican Gov.-elect Doug Burgum won by 58 points - the odds of finding a more progressive Democrat who can successfully replace Heitkamp, are slim to none.
Heidi Heitkamp learned her North Dakota values of hard work and responsibility growing up in a big family in the small town of Mantador. Her mom was the school cook and custodian, and her dad did all kinds of jobs, from truck driver to seasonal construction.
Heidi brought those small-town values to her career, choosing a life of public service. As a crime-fighting attorney general, she battled drug dealers, protected senior citizens from scams, and worked to keep sexual predators off our streets and away from our kids, even after their prison terms are up.
Her reputation as an advocate for the people grew when she served as a leader in the national settlement with the tobacco companies that required them to tell the truth about smoking and health, and pay restitution to the states. That settlement has so far brought $336 million to North Dakota for successful programs to reduce teen smoking and support schools and water supplies throughout the state.
Heidi lives in Mandan with her husband, Dr. Darwin Lange. They have two grown children, Ali and Nathan.
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