The state Supreme Court has ruled that Governor Burgum does not have the authority to appoint a replacement state House member in District 8.
Instead, the Court says current state law gives the local GOP District Committee the authority to make that appointment.
One of the candidates – Republican David Andahl – died in October, from COVID. It was too late to get him off the ballot, and he won a seat. The Committee appointed Rep. Jeff Delzer, who had been defeated in the primary.
Burgum had appointed a coal industry executive –Wade Boeshans.
In a statement, Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem – who argued the case on behalf of the Legislature – said he was happy the high court affirmed his opinion. He also called the case a waste of time and money.
Meanwhile, the third place finisher – Democrat Kathrin Volochenko – has filed suit in District Court in Bismarck, asserting that because Andahl was ineligible, and she was the third place vote-getter, she should be declared the winner.