Montana, Led by AG Bullock, is Sole State to Fight Corporate Election Influence

As Matt Singer at Left in the West wrote about yesterday, the Wall Street Journal is reporting that after the Supreme Court OK-ed corporate influence in elections, no other state but Montana had the backbone to stand up for our own laws against it.

And Montana’s Attorney General Steve Bullock, a rising star in the political scene both within the state and nationally, is leading the fight. As the Wall Street Journal reports:

Mr. Bullock says some of the Supreme Court’s reasons for overruling the federal campaign-finance law don’t apply to his state, arguing that its Corrupt Practices Act of 1912 remains constitutional.

Montana’s opponents are some of the most pernicious influences on state, regional, and national politics we’ve seen in recent years.   First, there is the militia affiliated Montana Shooting Sports Association:

Gary Marbut, president of the Montana Shooting Sports Association (MSSA), is a frequent contributor to the Militia of Montana’s e-mail list. In an April 2000 message to his e-mail list, he wrote “WTO, GATT, and NAFTA are all moves towards the New World Order and the coveted global government.”

He also contributes to the patriot Internet publication The Sierra Times. One of his columns was later carried in the Christian Identity tabloid The Jubilee. Christian Identity, based on a racist interpretation of the Bible, holds that Jews are the literal children of Satan, and people of color are subhuman “mud people.” Another Marbut column in The Sierra Times attacked the federal government for wanting its citizens to remain “Îstabable’, Îshootable’, Îbeatable’, Îrobable’, and, of course, Îrapeable.’” His dislike for the federal government also surfaced in 1994 when Marbut wanted Montana to secede from the union.

Also opposing Montana is the embattled Western Traditions Partnership, a groups with legal problems in Colorado and whose leadership appears to have acted illegally in Montana.  But that’s not all.  As Singer relates, the Billings Gazette is reporting that a Montana Commissioner of Political Practices investigator

has found evidence that Western Tradition Partnership intends to or has tried to solicit donations from officers of several foreign corporations or their affiliations, including some based in Canada, South Africa and the United Kingdom.

Hardly the “Western Tradition” they claim to espouse.  A third opponent of Montana’s case is a TEA Party leader worried about United Nations conspiracies.

He says he wants to spend his company’s money to oust city officials who joined an international organization of local governments seeking to meet sustainability goals backed by the United Nations.

This is a battle worth watching, and whatever the outcome of this particular fight, it is also worth watching the future of Montana’s Attorney General Steve Bullock.

Posted: October 13, 2010 at 6:23 am

2 thoughts on “Montana, Led by AG Bullock, is Sole State to Fight Corporate Election Influence

  1. Farmboy

    I hope Steve Bullock and his team win this one, because with the United States Supreme Court decision this summer on citizens united Im scared that future Montana legislative races are going to be bought by right wing extermists and out of state corporations that dont have the best intreset of the Montana people at heart. Right now there is a senate race in Billings Van Dyk and Brown where both parties are going to have spent from what I heard this morning 250k per candidate. How is that good for Montana’s political environment? Right now we have an under paid part time legislature made up of ordinary citizens, teachers, farmers and small business people, how are they suppose to compete against say a Wal Mart, or Pfizer Pharmacuticals or Exxon Mobile or that one nut job from New York who funded Travis Butcher’s unconstitional initatives back in 06?

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