Omdahl: Homeland Committee gets serious about politics

GRAND FORKS -- "Our Homeland Security Committee was ordered to draft a mission statement by May 20, which we don't have because I put this meeting off until after everybody had planted their carrots and stuff," Chairperson Ork Dorken announced to...

GRAND FORKS -- “Our Homeland Security Committee was ordered to draft a mission statement by May 20, which we don’t have because I put this meeting off until after everybody had planted their carrots and stuff,” Chairperson Ork Dorken announced to the town’s 13 electors assembled for the first meeting since March.

Before Ork could continue, Madeleine Morgan, the town’s first legislative candidate since 1906, burst into the cavernous community hall carrying 23 pounds of campaign literature in a 12-gallon purse.

“Well, our candidate is home from the hustings,” Josh Dvorchak declared. “Madeleine, how come I didn’t see your name anywhere in the primary election?”

“First off, my kitchen cabinet said I needed to change my name to ‘Maddie’ because that would be more voter-friendly than ‘Madeleine,’” she explained. “So from now on I’m Maddie.”

“Now about not being on the primary ballot,” she continued. “I’m running as an independent in the fall election because independent is what the voters want this year.”


“How independent?” doubted Holger Danske.

“So independent that I don’t have any party principles to choke my common sense,” Maddie shot back.

“Are you a Democrat-leaning independent or a Republican-leaning independent?” asked Orville Jordan.

“This isn’t horseshoe,” Maddie responded. “Either I’m a ringer or a loser. Leaners won’t count.”

“Where do you unleaning independents stand on taxes?” Einar Stamstead teased.

“Render unto governors that which is the governor’s and unto the taxpayers that which is the taxpayers’,” Maddie responded with a wry smile.

“Don’t that beat all!” exclaimed an astonished Chief Alert Officer Garvey Erfald. “By the time voters figure that out, the election will be over.”

“Sounds sort of religious,” Little Jimmy, the town scholar, noted. “You need to be religious to get elected.”


“Well, I eat kosher pickles, but that is about it,” she confessed.

“Got to do better ‘n that,” Holger warned.

“Well, I used to go to the Chapel of Sanctified Brethren in Larsburg until I became a candidate,” the candidate explained. “But they were against war, so I quit because the Legislature may need to appropriate money for the National Guard.”

“How are you going to make state government live within its means?” asked Dorsey Crank.

“When our town is ready to give up state aid for streets or revenue sharing or cigarette tax sharing?” Maddie countered. “We are part of the problem.”

“We have met the enemy, and they is us,” muttered Dorsey to Holger.

“It takes an independent to make the tough decisions because interest groups are bossing the Republicans and Democrats,” lectured Maddie. “We can’t have a common-sense discussion any more because officeholders can’t think for themselves. Common sense is not as common as we think. “

“Is there any reason we should vote for a woman when men are running?” Holger Danske asked on a dare by Orville


“Men are terrible legislators,” snapped Maddie. “Men just feed their egos and play the peacock in politics. They would rather fight than switch. Women can work together to get things done while the men are strutting around.”

“Whoa! Whoa!” exclaimed Old Sievert, half rising from his chair.

“There! See!” Maddie exclaimed. “ Your male ego is already fired up, and we haven’t even got to an issue yet.”

Olga Garvey had enough.

“Our mission should be raising some money for Maddie’s campaign,” she scolded as she took off her hat, threw in a $10 bill, and passed it to Gerda Torvald, who was digging feverishly through her purse for a contribution.

It was obvious that the chair had lost control of the meeting.

“This has gone far enough,” Ork declared, banging his Coke bottle on the table. “This meeting is adjourned.”

The wives applauded; the men groused. They beat the establishment, and the town would go for Maddie.

Related Topics: LLOYD OMDAHL
What To Read Next
The Dickinson Press Editorial Board stands with the wild horses and calls on the National Park Service to extend public commentary period
“From the Hawks’ Nest” is a monthly column by Dickinson State University President Steve Easton
"Life is a team effort no matter what, and greed puts you out on a lonely limb," writes Kevin Holten.
"Our life of faith is a life with God. And that makes all the difference," writes Boniface Muggli