THE BLOG
02/28/2008 04:00 pm ET | Updated May 25, 2011

DNC North Dakota Superdelegates

HuffPost's OffTheBus members produced these superdelegate profiles as part of its Superdelegate Investigation. You can find all profiles here.

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Renee Pfenning
Democratic national committeewoman
Bismark, North Dakota


Basic Bio
* Resides in Bismarck, Burleigh County, N.Dak http://politicalgraveyard.com/bio/pfaelzer-phellis.html
* Member of IBEW Local 1593 and a former CWA member
* Lobbied for the North Dakota Building and Construction Trades Council during the 2003, 2001 and 1999 legislative sessions http://www.gwu.edu/~action/2004/gephardt/gephorgnd.html
* Lobbyist for North Dakota State Building And Construction Trades Council http://www.dakotapolitics.com/Renee_M_Pfenning
* Volunteer, Habitat for Humanity http://www.buildingsystems.com/BreakingNews/bn_01_25_06.html

Political interests and issues
* Member of 2004 HAVA (Help America Vote Act) State Planning Committee http://www.nd.gov/hava/committees/2004/planning.html
* Filed complaint with the Federal Elections Commission against Michael Liffrig in his official capacity as Treasurer, Liffrig's campaign for U.S. Senate, and others: Prohibited corporate contribution; excessive contribution; contribution in the name of another; and failure to disclose debts and obligations.
o The complainant alleged that the respondents committed multiple violations of the act. According to the complaint:
+ Newman Signs, Inc. made, and Liffrig for Senate knowingly accepted, a prohibited in-kind contribution in the form of discounted billboard advertising space and production costs;
+ Harold Newman made an excessive contribution or contribution in the name of another to Liffrig for Senate by making an earmarked contribution to Bully PAC;
+ Bully PAC made, and Liffrig for Senate knowingly accepted, an excessive contribution or contribution in the name of another by Harold Newman; and
+ Liffrig for Senate failed to disclose certain debts and obligations.
+ The Commission found: no reason to believe that Newman Signs, Inc. or Liffrig for Senate violated the Act by making or accepting a prohibited in-kind contribution; no reason to believe that Harold Newman made an excessive contribution to Liffrig for Senate; no reason to believe that Liffrig for Senate accepted an excessive contribution; no reason to believe that Harold Newman or Bully PAC made a contribution in the name of another; no reason to believe that Liffrig for Senate knowingly received a contribution in the name of another; reason to believe that Bully PAC violated the Act by making an excessive in-kind contribution to Liffrig for Senate. The Commission voted to admonish Liffrig for Senate for its failure to report an in-kind contriution and certain debts and obligations and accepting an excessive contribution, and dismissed these allegations in an exercise of prosecutorial discretion. Bully PAC agreed to pay a $1,000 civil penalty, waive its right to a refund of the excessive contribution and instruct Liffrig for Senate to disgorge the excessive contribution of $4,000 to the U.S. Treasury. http://www.fec.gov/press/press2007/20070502MURs5659581156785597.shtml
http://eqs.sdrdc.com/eqs/searcheqs?SUBMIT=news&CASENUM=5678&CASETYPE=mur


Involvement in the Democratic Party
* Member of Democratic National Committee from North Dakota, 2004; delegate to Democratic National Convention from North Dakota, 2004 http://politicalgraveyard.com/bio/pfaelzer-phellis.html
* National Committeewoman of the DNC
* SW Regional Representative on the State Dem-NPL Executive Committee
* District Chair, Legislative Campaign Manager, and District Treasurer
* District Co-Chair of the Candidate Search Committee
* Treasurer of the Bismarck Democrats http://nddemnpl.blogspot.com/2008_02_01_archive.html


Involvement in the 2008 Election
* Endorsed Barack Obama for president in March 2008 http://www.bismarcktribune.com/articles/2008/03/01/news/state/150066.txt
* Pfenning's statement: "I feel there have been many high-quality Democratic candidates in this race for president of the United States. Ultimately, my decision to endorse Sen. Barack Obama was based on three big factors.
"Sen. Obama made an unprecedented investment in North Dakota prior to the Feb. 5 Presidential Preference Caucuses. His campaign placed full-time staffers on the ground here. Their efforts helped the Democratic-NPL Party achieve a record caucus turnout in which Sen. Obama received 61 percent of the vote. "Even after the caucuses, I continue to receive many positive messages from North Dakota's grassroots about Sen. Obama. There is a strong feeling throughout this state and country that he is bringing people together for the positive change our country desperately needs right now." '
http://thepage.time.com/four-superdelegates-endorse-obama/
* Appointed chair of the Presidential Electors Committee (thiscommittee recommends three names to the State Convention which appear on the General Election ballot regarding North Dakota's Electoral College) to the 2008 State Convention by the Democratic-NPLParty http://nddemnpl.blogspot.com/2008_02_01_archive.html

Previous Campaign Work and Experience
* Hired by Rep. Dick Gephardt (Missouri) in December of 2003 as his North Dakota labor coordinator for his 2004 Presidential campaign http://www.gwu.edu/~action/2004/gephardt/gephorgnd.html

This profile was produced through HuffPost's OffTheBus Superdelegate Investigation. If you have information that should be added to this profile, please send an email to campaigntrail@huffingtonpost.com with "superdelegate profile" in the subject line. All profiles will be donated to the Superdelegate Transparency Project.

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David M. Strauss

Chair of North Dakota Democratic Party

North Dakota

Basic Bio
* Strauss graduated from the Minnesota State University at Moorhead in 1973. He has degrees in political science and secondary education.
* Starting out, Strauss worked as the North Dakota's state executive director for the USDA's Agricultural Stabilization and Conservation Service, administering federal farm programs.
* Strauss has 13yrs of senior management positions in the U.S. Senate, including work for Sen. Quentin Burdick. He served as staff director for the Senate Committee on Environmental and Public Works.
* Strauss also served for four years as the deputy chief of staff to Vice-President Al Gore.
* Following this, Strauss was appointed by President Bill Clinton to the position of Executive Director of the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation, a self-financing government corporation insuring defined benefit pension plans. http://demnpl.campaignoffice.com/index.asp?Type=B_PR&SEC=%7BBA7CDFAA-A2DF-466D-8AA7-E6868E9173D4%7D&DE=%7B0B1608E7-6B57-4E5B-8432-8519F90364F9%7D

Political interests and issues
* Strauss has been associated with work on pension and retirement plans thanks to his work at the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation.
* Statement from Strauss to the Appropriations Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services in March 2000. http://www.dol.gov/oasam/programs/history/herman/budget/pbgc03_22.htm

Involvement in the Democratic Party
* Strauss is the current Chair of the North Dakota Democratic-NPL Party. (The NPL stands for the Non-Partisan League, which was North Dakota's sole progressive-liberal organization until 1956, when it voted to merge with the national Democratic Party.)
* Was elected Chairman in 2005. North Dakota Democratic-NPL Party site http://www.demnpl.com/
* Strauss was mentioned in news stories in 1998 surrounding the investigation of Vice President Al Gore and his fundraising practices during the 1996 re-election campaign. Strauss authored a 1995 memo that focused on campaign finance issues and its disclosure raised questions about Gore's truthfulness regarding finances. New York Times Article: "Reno Ends Inquiry Into Fund-Raising by Vice President" http://query.nytimes.com/gst/fullpage.html?res=9B04E0DA1739F936A15752C1A96E958260&sec=&spon=&pagewanted=all

Pledged Status
* In a March 1st article in the Bismake Tribune, examining the state's superdelegates, David Strauss said he was staying uncommitted. Bismark Tribune article, "N.D. superdelegate favors Obama" http://www.bismarcktribune.com/articles/2008/03/01/news/state/150066.txt

Contributions to Candidates
* $250.00 to the North Dakota Democratic-NLP Party in 2006
* $250.00 to the North Dakota Democratic-NLP Party in 2004
* $8000.00 to the Earl Pomeroy for Congress campaign in 2004 & 2005
* $250 to the North Dakota Democratic-NLP Party in 2007.
* $250 to the North Dakota Democratic-NLP Party in 2008. http://www.fec.gov/finance/disclosure/advindsea.shtml

Connections to Politicians, Leaders on State Level
* Strauss was a former aide to North Dakota Senator Quentin Burdick. http://demnpl.campaignoffice.com/index.asp?Type=B_PR&SEC=%7BBA7CDFAA-A2DF-466D-8AA7-E6868E9173D4%7D&DE=%7B0B1608E7-6B57-4E5B-8432-8519F90364F9%7D

This profile was produced through HuffPost's OffTheBus Superdelegate Investigation. All profiles will be donated to the Superdelegate Transparency Project. If you have information that should be added to this profile, please join the Superdelegate Transparency Project and update the profile there.

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