Posted: May 15, 2012 at 8:42 pm

The Jesus Factor

Montana GOP Executive Director Bowen GreenwoodBowen Greenwood, the head of the Montana GOP, emailed party faithful that he will be running as a write-in candidate for clerk of the Supreme Court this fall.

In the email, Greenwood wrote:

I am  first and foremost a follower and friend of a guy named Jesus of Nazareth. Nothing else even comes close.

Aware that his missive would be picked up and transmitted around, Greenwood clearly is keen on sending a message to the holy rollers in his party that he is One Of Them.

As this relates to the governor’s race, it’s been previously assumed that Greenwood is not a Rick Hill supporter, because of Hill’s lack of right-wing bona fides, Greenwood’s appearance in a Ken Miller video, and Greenwood’s support of Rick Santorum. I would say the email supports the notion that Greenwood likes the Miller candidacy.

And recently Miller has become more direct, himself, about highlighting his own status as “A Christian,” on his website and in debates.

Greenwood might also be worried about a religious insurrection within his party, and wants to appear to be a religious nut so that he can keep his job when the wheels come off in November. Right now the Montana GOP is run mostly by Helena insiders, but is staring at the real possibility of twelve straight years of Democratic control of the Governor’s office and 16 straight years controlling the Attorney General’s office and Land Board. If this comes true in November, there will be a Republican Revolution, but not the kind that the GOP enjoys celebrating, unless you happen to be one of the ecstatic rioting Tea Partiers holding the pitchfork that is hoisting the asses of Greenwood and Will Deschamp, the Party Chairman).

And there is another more subtle thing going on here.

Right-wingers have been led into a self-reinforcing delusion, ever since McCain lost to Obama, that if a moderate Republican candidate loses an election it’s because the candidate made the mistake of trying to appeal to independent voters. Be a true right-wing conservative and you will always win, say Rush Limbaugh and Glenn Beck to their daily audiences of twenty million foaming, gullible ignoramuses.

This thinking allows right-wing leaders and shouters to have their cake and eat it. They can say “I told you so” if and when candidates like Mitt Romney or Rick Hill get defeated. And the purveyors of this Theory of Conservative Purity themselves become more relevant in the off-season. Their followers, meanwhile, can take solace in the fact that arch conservatism is The Way, and that Republicans can only lose elections for failing to follow The Way. This is exactly the bed that has been made for Mitt Romney, by Santorum and Gingrich, Beck and Limbaugh. When Romney loses, they’ll say its because a false conservative, not a true one, was nominated.

For a Party activist like Greenwood, this delusion has a more practical application: it sets up a good position from which to dump on a GOP candidate who loses.

It’s an easy out. For when Rick Hill loses (and he will be the nominee, and will lose to Bullock), Greenwood will signal to the base of his party, “I told you so.” This, even though Ken Miller would himself strand no real chance of winning a general election. But how could this be disproven if Miller never gets the nomination? It can’t, and that’s the beauty of it.

The entire Greenwood email is pasted below the fold.

 

Write-In Bowen Greenwood for Clerk of Supreme Court!

 

The Website Is Live

This e-mail newsletter is about the campaign to write-in Bowen Greenwood for Clerk of the Montana Supreme Court. You’re receiving it because you’re a friend, acquaintance, well-wisher, or non-enemy of Bowen’s.

Today www.bowengreenwood.com is up and running and ready to accept visitors. Check it out!

By now, many of you have probably heard about the write in campaign — probably because you were all on the first e-mail. This newsletter will cover three subjects: Why should you care, why me, and what can you do to help.

Why should you care

If you’re a Republican, there are two reasons you should care. First, it’s good to have our point of view represented in every race. If you’re a Republican, smaller government, lower taxes, and stronger families are important to you. If they’re important, people should be able to vote for those ideals. But right now, in the Clerk of Supreme Court race, there is no candidate who represents those ideals. That’s why we need to write in our own.

Moreover, there’s a self-interested reason why Republicans should care about this effort. As a voter is marking his or her ballot, the tendency is to keep voting the same party all the way down the ticket, unless something breaks the chain. So if we win the U.S. Senate, U.S. House, Governor, and other races — as we are likely to do — a majority of voters will be in the midst of a long string of Republican votes when they come to the Clerk of the Montana Supreme Court. If we break that string by not having a candidate in this race, it decreases the odds of Republicans winning the races that come after Clerk on the ballot. If we want to win Republican elections, we need a Republican name on the ballot for Clerk of the Montana Supreme Court. This write-in campaign is the only way to get one.

Maybe you’re not a Republican. Since this is my personal e-mail list, about the only way to get on it and not be a Republican is 1) be my mother or 2) be a reporter.

If you’re a reporter, here’s why you should care about this. A write in campaign with a serious intention of winning has never happened before. It may never happen again. You may go your whole journalistic career and never cover another write in who might actually pull it off. My friend, this is news. Getting onto a statewide ballot as a write-in candidate does not exactly happen every day. If I pull it off, and you covered it before it happened, people will be impressed.

Why Bowen Greenwood

I am  first and foremost a follower and friend of a guy named Jesus of Nazareth. Nothing else even comes close. But of all that other stuff, the most important things are: I am in favor of creating good-paying jobs by developing our natural resources. I am in favor of reducing regulations, repealing Obamacare, lowering taxes, and more. I am so strongly in favor of our Second Amendment rights that you could arm a third-world country from my garage. Pro-life, pro-family, pro-marriage, pro-American, and more.

What can you do to help?

First, forward this e-mail. I’m serious. Right now, you’re probably thinking, e-mail forwards are usually just stupid chain letters, dirty jokes, or boring. But this one is different. This e-mail represents a real, honest-to-goodness people’s effort to place a name on the ballot. This is citizen self-government in the purest possible form. By forwarding this e-mail, you are telling friends who might otherwise never know, that they can make a real, tangible difference in the November election. So even though you hate forwards, even though you delete every one you get, even though your friends have asked you to stop forwarding political diatribes, I’m still asking you to please forward this e-mail.

Next, visit www.bowengreenwood.com. The website is chock full of ways you can help. It explains the write-in process, it’s got guidance about letters to the editor, it’s got a good picture of me taken by my friend Jessica — all that AND a sample ballot picture. Go look at www.bowengreenwood.com, click on “how can I help,” and get started.

Conclusion

This matters. It matters big time. By participating in this write-in campaign, you can make a real, measurable difference in Republican races all the way down the ballot. Are you thinking of writing in Bowen Greenwood for Clerk of Supreme Court? Great. But it’s not enough. If you’re going to write in my name and stop there, then don’t bother. Your vote won’t put us across the finish line.

But the votes of all your friends and family might.

So forward this. Facebook this. Tweet it, tell your friends, and become annoying about it. If you don’t, don’t bother writing in.

I am asking for your vote, yes. But I am asking for more than that. Please spread the word.

Paid for by Bowen Greenwood, 2153 Alpine Drive, Helena, MT  59601. Republican.www.bowengreenwood.com

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18 comments

  1. dashbored

    did this guy read the same bible as me? the jesus i read about wanted to help the poor.

  2. NamelessRange

    When the religious pull the “relationhsip not religion” card, it is always entertaining. Mr. Greenwood’s statement, “I am first and foremost a follower and friend of a guy named Jesus of Nazareth.”

    Follower and a friend? With someone who you’ve never seen. Never heard. And someone from whom no direct testimony or empirical evidence exists? So you’re friends via psychic contact?

    As the blogger Gary Mueller rightly pointed out. “John Hinckley, Jr. had more of a relationship with Jodie Foster than any Christian has with Jesus Christ.”

  3. Dan T.

    Here’s what’s embarrassing about this. The TEA party sent out an email first saying write in greenwood. Then he just couldn’t figure out how to say no to them- and lose TEA votes for repubs if he pissed them off. Jesus my ass- he’s afraid of the baggers

  4. Amorette

    Two things I note. One, the letter implies his mother is not a Republican and two, as a reporter, my ego is being appealed to. I should write about him not to inform the public but to make myself feel important.

    I feel just fine, thank you.

  5. Michael Searalika

    Love is the string that ties all creation (humans, animals, plants, etc) to a common source we call GOD. Without it, we stray aimlessly in the darkness without wisdom and sanity. However and whatever prayer you use to make your connection, is your business, but I have yet to see any of these republicans pray with those strings attached anymore, unless it is to a corporation!

    This guy is just another Guy evoking a name in vain, to get a response to those who have already lost their souls and Morality right along with him to big business!

    • Norma Duffy AKA ILIKEWOODS

      Highly unlikely Dave, after the Primaries, your gonna find out your Moderates wont go all the way to the right this time in November.

      And No One is gonna walk back from the teapublican side anytime soon.

  6. Dallas Reese

    This is ridiculous. For all you Bible thumpers and Jesus jumpers out there, Article VI of the US Constitution prohibits a religious test to hold political office. It would appear to me that this whole “I’m a Christian so vote for me” bullshit is in direct conflict with the US Constitution.

    I couldn’t care less whether the candidate is Christian, Jew, Muslim or Druid; in fact it’s none of my friggin’ business. And any candidate that panders to the religious right by trying to “out-God” the next guy does NOT get my vote simply because of their pandering.

  7. Dave

    Bowen’s vote wasn’t even close to getting the 11,500 plus votes he needed. Bowen spent some of the day on March 12th at the capitol, where he could have filed if he was that interested in the race. But the Republicans are only interested in power and control. The Republicans haven’t had a candidate in the clerk’s race since 1988. My vote goes to the Libertarian Mike Fellows.