North Dakota Gov. Doug Burgum comes to Iowa as 2024 candidate

By: - June 8, 2023 7:25 pm

North Dakota Gov. Doug Burgum announced his 2024 presidential race on June 7, 2023, before heading to Iowa. (Screenshot from Burgum campaign video)

North Dakota Gov. Doug Burgum made his first trip to Iowa Thursday, a day after his entry into the 2024 presidential race.

Burgum began his time in Iowa hosting a meet-and-greet at a Farley farm equipment supplier, CJ Beeps Equipment LLC, before heading to the Field of Dreams in Dyersville. In his announcement Wednesday in Fargo, North Dakota, Burgum said the country needs a leader focused on three things: “economy, energy and national security.”

“We need a leader who understands the real work that Americans do every day,” Burgum said. “Someone who’s worked alongside our farmers, our ranchers and our small business owners. Someone who’s held jobs where you shower at the end of the day, not at the beginning.”

Burgum has emphasized his focus on fuel-based energy, and the industries that rely on it. He was first elected to office in 2016 during the protests over the Dakota Access pipeline; one of the proposed carbon capture pipelines to run through Iowa would send the liquid fuel to North Dakota for storage.

“We need pipelines,” Burgum said in a Radio Iowa interview. “It’s the safest and easiest way to transport any fuel and any liquids in this country. … America needs to figure out how to build essential infrastructure or we can just cede our leadership in the world and, again, just get all our batteries from China and get all our oil from the Middle East.”

In addition to supporting U.S. oil production, Burgum supports federal mandates on biofuels – a significant position in Iowa, where ethanol production holds weight in the state’s economy.

The North Dakota Republican takes on an uphill battle to become the Republican nominee in the 2024 general election. He is the 12th candidate to join the race, with former Vice President Mike Pence and former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie also entering the field Wednesday.

While Burgum does not have the large national profile of other 2024 candidates, like former President Donald Trump and Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, he told the crowd in his announcement speech that he is different from other candidates by focusing on  the economy instead of hot-button topics like abortion and LGBTQ+ issues.

“Let’s get back to common sense,” he said. “Let’s eliminate red tape, get inflation under control and cut taxes, reduce the cost of living, and help every American realize their fullest potential.”

On Friday, Burgum plans to make stops around the Des Moines metro with the Northside Conservative Breakfast Club in Ankeny and the World Pork Expo at the Iowa State Fairgrounds, before heading to a lunch in Marshalltown.

Our stories may be republished online or in print under Creative Commons license CC BY-NC-ND 4.0. We ask that you edit only for style or to shorten, provide proper attribution and link to our web site. Please see our republishing guidelines for use of photos and graphics.

Robin Opsahl
Robin Opsahl

Robin Opsahl is an Iowa Capital Dispatch reporter covering the state Legislature and politics. They have experience covering government, elections and more at media organizations including Roll Call, the Sacramento Bee and the Wausau Daily Herald.