As I recently mentioned, there is a nasty plot afoot in Ravalli county, hatched by the local Tea Party. It’s dirty, below-the-belt, highly dishonest stuff. Embarrassed at the fact that they have become a national joke, the Montana Tea Party has resorted to an attempt to invade and infect the Democratic Party, Trojan Horse style, and take it over. Let’s take a closer look at exactly what’s happening.
When you vote in a primary in Montana, there is a place on your ballot to vote for “precinct committee captain.” This is an unusual item to be found on a ballot for a state election because a precinct captain is a Party post, not a government office. Yet Democratic and Republican ballots both provide this opportunity to vote for a candidate for this political position. Sometimes there will be a name, or several names, from which to choose. Other years, the slot will be blank and the voter must either write in a name, or else not cast a vote. It is often left blank, because most people don’t even know what the heck it is.
And what is a precinct committee captain? There is one elected (on primary day) from each voting precinct in every county, and these persons collectively form what is called the “central committee” for the county. A central committee is simply the governing board of the county party.
But this year, a bunch of Tea Partiers (in several precincts in Ravalli county) filed paperwork to run for Democratic precinct Committeeperson. And unless the Ravalli democrats undertake a campaign to inform voters not to vote for these candidates, these idiots will be elected to the county committee and will then exert control of the local Democratic party. The TEA Party candidates are: Lyle E. Goracke, Jan Wisniewski, Donna Gibney, Pamela Nearpass, Catherine Lieberth, Wayne K. Dunkin and David J. Erickson.