Lt. Gov. Drew Wrigley gives Governor Dalrymple an 'A' for his leadership during ongoing DAPL protests
North Dakota Lt. Gov. Drew Wrigley gave Governor Dalrymple an 'A' for leadership in the ongoing DAPL protest situation.
(Please note - this transcript was copied from an electronic captioning service. We apologize for any errors, spelling, grammatical, or otherwise.)
Welcome back, we're talking about the DAPL protest, Lieutenant Governor Drew Wrigley. Stick around with us. The governor requested a meeting to meet with the entire council to discuss the questions we've had for some time.
Why did it take him so long to call this meeting?
I'm glad you said that, because that's a rational misperception, because nobody knew today we were going to seek that meeting. There have been various meetings throughout this whole thing. He spoke with Chairman Archambault many times. Major General, head of the National Guard. Lots of meetings with tribal officials, Chairman Archambault and others. I’ve been in the room several occasions when the governor spoke with chairman Archambault. It's like when you're in the Fargodome. That section over here is mad at them, that section over there has a completely different interest. There’s not unified leadership. The governor is trying to put it together with a broad array of tribal leaders and talking about the immediate need now.
I think what people are going to say is obviously the strategy is, Archambault, the strategy used with the communication with Archambault wasn't working because now we're at where we are today. Why not call a meeting and try to build the coalition? Look, I’ve got papers here of all kinds of Native Americans, 680 residents of Cannonball opposed to protesters building a winter camp. Sick and tired -- I’ve got paper after paper of Native Americans going, don't want this. Why not meet about it months ago?
I'm glad you bring that up. If people see this as a dispute between the people of the state of North Dakota and Standing Rock, it isn't that.
You're not answering my questions.
I am. We've had people reaching out to them, might mitigate in a resolution of some kind or at least a break in the public's facade. Chairman Archambault refused to call for the unlawful acts to stop, for the up lawful actors to remove themselves. We haven't had a partner in that regard, but we have had ongoing communications, and it's been made public that we're going to try a broader communication. It’s not fair to say the governor hasn't been talking to them --
You said Archambault hasn't been a good partner.
This is a culture that smokes peace pipe, why not go put some leverage on the leaders to get this to stop?
There have been examples of that as this has gone along. I lead a meeting with another tribe that came in, we had a vigorous discussion in the conference room, it was a great discussion and there's a point where we got to the fact that we disagreed on things over the years and one of the gentlemen there said Drew I like your personality, we get along, but sometimes we're frustrated. And I said you know what, I feel the same, sometimes when you leafy feel you were completely unreasonable.
I'm going to say the same back to you and it's also called reaching accord with different sides. We’re never going to agree completely these relationships exist across many years, tax issues, game and fish issues, I’ll say allegedly on the water issue, because there's plenty of opportunity, due process was in place for many many years and people did not avail themselves of the opportunity to weigh-in and now it's lawful commerce being blocked by unlawful act. I've got to get through a few more things. We’re going to make news tonight, folks.
The farm bureau came up with a scathing letter, the things I hear on the street is a same thing. There’s tough question for you. If you were to look at the situation as a whole so far, not as lieutenant governor, as a North Dakotan objectively, how would you grade Governor Dalrymple and his leadership up to this point?
I'm glad you asked it, because I’m there every single day, we're working on this continuously and have been throughout. The farm bureau letter, I’m glad you mentioned that. He knows our phone numbers, I run into him from time to time, he could come in at any time for a meeting any day. I don't know what his intention with that letter was, but it wasn't construct I have. That was very disappointing and I’ll let him know myself in person when I see him the next time.co-come any time to the office and meet continuously on this, that was disappointing and I still don't understand -- was it fund raising? I have no idea. But I don't appreciate the approach. Walk to our office and we can have a constructive dialogue on it.
What kind of grade would you give the governor?
I'm proud to be standing by his side. There’s been criticism of not enough public communication, maybe that's the case but we're sitting there, eyes on the case every day, National Guard coming in, highway patrol, local leadership, everything else. He is fully engaged, his seasoned judgment and wisdom is being applied every day. Proof is in the pudding, Chris. Keeping the public safe, law enforcement safe, protesters, no loss of life, very little serious bodily injury, self-inflected, the pipeline is complete to the point of the bore hole underneath. We believe it will be done and an important infrastructure will be completed and it's important for the entire nation and the economy.
Two more things, you still haven't answered my question.
A on the leadership up to this point. You bet.
Publication, based on that, what I told you there, aware there every day -- we're there every day, I’m watching the governor -- I get asked every day why don't you bring the National Guard down. It’s been a hard, difficult fight, been expensive but we've maintained public safety, it's never -- people will tell you this is very complicated and there are not easy solutions. The end will come and the oil will flow and the water will be protected like it is by this very sound infrastructure project.
I've got 30 seconds here. He said, hey, this is great news for your state, making it clear, send us the bill. As long as it's legal to do this, would you accept him paying for the protection?
Well, that's not a decision that will be made with our administration, two weeks from tonight we'll be done. We’re not allergic to any proposals coming in. You have to look at the priorities involved. There’s going to be a bill for this. You mentioned at the beginning it's expensive and not to be on the shoulders of the taxpayers of North Dakota.
You just mentioned two weeks and you're done.
Next chapter for Drew Wrigley?
We're staying in Bismarck. Kathleen has an exciting new job. I’m not going to announce, it's got state wide and regional swath, tremendous -- company that people will recognize when I talk about it.
You're going to be chief counsel somewhere?
I'm a lawyer but not chief counsel.
It's so good to have you. We're hoping to have him and maybe other guests during this upcoming session. Stick around, we're going to wrap things up after this. We’d love to know your point of view on Drew Wrigley, Lieutenant Governor of the state.