Remember back a long, long time ago, before the TEA party to the year 2007, when Rehberg had full control of the Montana Republican Party and exercised that control as needed to keep the fringe ideological elements in check?
He needed only have a staffer make a phone call and a legislator would pull a bill from the legislative process, halting its introduction altogether, as you can read in Dave Lewis’s statement here, at Pogie’s place: Rehberg’s staff has Lewis halt a bill that would be an embarassment for all Republican candidates in Montana and a harm to their electoral chances. Says Lewis:
At that point, one of Congressman Rehberg’s staff asked that I not introduce it because he felt it be awkward for the Congressman if we passed it.
Flash forward to today’s TEA Party dominated Montana GOP where Congressman Rehberg says of himself:
“Some people say you are the leader of the Republican Party, no we don’t have that in the Republican party…If I was to try to project myself as their leader, they would react to that very poorly as well.”
Remind anyone of the “I’m not the leader of the Tea Party, and there is not one” refrain that is passed around whenever they TEA Party does something odd or untoward?
Rehberg makes this statement in a Youtube video posted here of his statements explaining why he had no control to stop fringe ideological resolutions at the last GOP Platform Convention in 2010, such as the one calling for the jailing of LGBT Montanans and the birther resolution calling for a law that all Montana candidates produce a birth certificate so we don’t get any more Kkkenyan Socialists elected to office. These were passed after the TEA Partiers exerted their influence over the GOP platform at its Convention and passed several resolutions out side the mainstream viewpoints of Montana voters. Too bad Rehberg didn’t have a staffer (or himself) at the Republican Platform convention to tell them it might be embarrassing to the Congressman and Republicans and harmful to their electoral chances this plank passed…Oh wait he was and so were his staffers. Too bad for them that they no longer have the power to do anything about it.