Note: The following statement is from former District 36 Representative Luke Simons and has been released to The Minuteman for publication. Rep. Simons was expelled from the State Legislature last week for allegations that were not investigated, nor proven to be true.
Last Thursday, individuals who were not elected by my district silenced the voice of my constituents. It’s that simple, folks. I believe that the Legislature was wrong in its decision to remove me. I strongly believe that in doing so the legislature violated my rights to due process, while at the same time violating our Constitution, our statutes, their own rules, and even the policy the Legislature adopted in regards to workplace harassment.
Lies, deceit and hearsay combined with a fear over public perception, ruled the day. This was a travesty for not only my family – but my district, our state, and all those involved.
Yesterday, I cleared my name at a press conference in which we went through every allegation one by one and stated the truth of what really happened, along with what I would have said had an investigator been appointed, or if I had been provided a real hearing. Unlike the individuals who pushed for my removal based on mischaracterizations and anonymous allegations, I was willing to subject myself to any questions the reporters wanted to ask me about the allegations.
Sadly, not one person from the media asked a single question about the specific allegations. Could it be that many in the media in North Dakota are not actually interested in the truth? Unfortunately, most North Dakotans are unaware of the many ways in which a handful of political insiders in Bismarck have operated a revolving door of cronyism, while eroding our liberties and wasting our money. There’s been more news coverage on these false allegations against me, than there has been scrutinizing each dollar of spending.
The District 36 Executive Committee is willing to reappoint me, but I am concerned that there would be an effort to refuse me being re-seated, even though they should be obligated to do so. If I were to take this to the North Dakota Supreme Court, it may take weeks to get a decision. If the Legislature refuses to seat me, then it will take weeks to correct that through the North Dakota Supreme Court. Therefore, the legislature has effectively disenfranchised the people of my district. Unfortunately, the only way I can immediately correct this injustice is to allow someone else to serve. There are too many important bills that could pass or fail by a single vote. I cannot in good conscience prioritize my legal battle over the potential outcome of important legislation for the people of North Dakota.
Representing District 36 is an experience I will never forget. I am proud of my legislative record, and I have no absolutely no regrets in how strongly I fought for our conservative principles. I’ve learned a lot over the years, and the value I place on the friendships amongst my legislative colleagues is irreplaceable. I loved being on the frontlines to fight for our Constitution. But, I love my family more. This chain of events has taken a toll on us, both financially and emotionally. It is for all of these reasons that I have decided, after much prayer, to not pursue further action to maintain my seat.
Words cannot express the gratitude I feel for the words of support from thousands of people who have contacted me in the last two weeks. The prayer, encouragement, and financial support of so many will remain dear in my heart for the rest of my days. Throughout all of this, my beloved wife Aleisha has unwaveringly stood by my side. She and my children are the lights of my life. Without them, I am nothing.
When I first ran for the State House, victory was not certain. The only thing that was certain was my love of country, my love of North Dakota, and the fire of liberty in my heart. That fire burns in every one of us, no matter how much some may want to extinguish it. I believed all that was enough at the time. I never would have imagined how much lying and corruption we have in our State Capitol in Bismarck. In this matter, House Republican leadership failed, and the Republican Party of North Dakota failed.
However, I believe that all North Dakotans, and especially conservative patriots, possess the courage and spirit of our pioneer ancestors. To my family, friends and supporters in District 36, and across the state, I am asking you to get involved. My expulsion from the Legislature has been upsetting for all of us. But I ask you to put your feelings to good use, not anger without direction. You have the ability to change things for the better. The people who believe they should hold undue power over you and your
family, waste our tax dollars, or who destroy our values and traditions, must be challenged.
We have a special legacy as Americans, as defenders of a great Republic that has led the world as a beacon of light. We are blessed to live in a place where decent and faithful people can live in peace and prosperity. If you believe that as I do, then you have an obligation to do something about it. There’s too much at stake in America right now. Good men and women of courage and vision must stand tall and proud to lead our state and nation in this time of need. I am not going to stay silent, and I am not going to go away. I am simply going to find a different way to make a difference.
In the end, victory must be ours.