…Steve Daines, whose speech at the RNC lionized his ancestor as not being “Saved by Government” when that ancestor received a huge government handout in the form of a homestead under a federal program called the Homestead Act.
In his speech to the GOP faithful, Daines told a story about how his great-great-grandmother’s tombstone read “Saved by Grace” and certainly did not read “Saved by Government.” Zing! Daines became so excited by the story himself he forgot which generation a Montanan he was claiming to be. 5th? 6th? Too exciting to worry about it, I guess.
The faces of the Montana GOPers in the crowd are flush with ecstasy over Daines’ tale of government aid. As they pump their fists in the air, there is no trace of comprehension of how ridiculous they appear for missing the irony. Instead, one sees only joy and delirium.
It takes a special kind of hypocrite to trumpet government programs in a speech railing against government programs. And that’s why Steve Daines deserves such a special award. Get back out there on that yacht and celebrate Mr. Daines. As you pound down the martinis and coconut shrimp, don’t waste a thought on how today’s GOP would treat your great-great-grandmother, an impoverished, immigrant widow with seven children.
The State Republican Party sent its team of stalwarts to Tampa for the national convention this week. Among the delegates are veritable treasure trove of politicians who have dabbled in — or fully embraced — the wacky views, hypocrisy, and nutty ideas of the 2011 legislature. If you liked the national scrutiny last session received, you’ll love this crew.
Let’s take a look at who Montana Republicans sent to represent them on the national scene:
First, there is Birther Legislator Joanne Blyton of Red Lodge. Rep. Blyton voted to support Rep. Bob Wagner’s bill in the 2011 session. Yes, that’s the same bill that later made the Montana Legislature famous on CNN.
Then, there is state Rep. Ken Peterson of Billings. Peterson, an attorney, made a name for himself by pointing out a loophole that still allows GOP-ers to prosecute people for being gay–even though the courts have struck down a state law saying that being gay will get you prison time. The penalty on the books is ten years and a $5o,ooo dollar fine.
Peterson says that gays can still be prosecuted for “recruiting.” Here’s how Peterson describes how “the gay recruitment” process goes down, in his own words:
Here young man, your hormones are raging. Let’s go in this bedroom and we’ll engage in some homosexual acts. You’ll find you’ll like it.
Next there is Tamara “Tammy” Hall of Bozeman. Hall is the ultra-angry, ultra right-wing radio commentator in Bozeman who pens an occasional column for the Bozeman Chronicle and is supposedly a “motivational speaker” for a living. Hall’s favorite topics include hating on feminists and Governor Schweitzer and loving on Chick-fil-A.
Stephen Zabawa of Billings is the anti-medical marijuana crusader who appeared in the Billings Gazetteafter his attempts to get in on a share of a medial marijuana business came to light.
Rep. Cleve Loney and TEA Party leader Cyndi Baker of Great Falls are there too. The couple is pictured here.
Baker was a Great Falls City Commission candidate who campaigned against school district spending, then turned around and sought a district paycheck.
But it’s worse then that, as the Great Falls Tribune reports, Baker tried to threaten the local government for taxpayer funded payola in the form of a position as “ombudsman” to the local TEA Party anti-government activists. TEA Party Republican state Rep. Cleve Loney is on the left.
Wynn Resorts has also given $350,000 to the Republican Governors Association this election cycle. The RGA is the group that’s running ads against Steve Bullock. He also gave half a million to the Republican Party’s “Leadership Committee” which focuses on electing Republicans to state legislatures and Tier B races.
GOP Convention attendee Jim Brown has penned a blog post for the Billings Gazette which notes that he’s looking forward to experiencing the hurricane. Brown makes no mention in his piece of any anticipation for the convention itself.
Jim Brown, the attorney for the Montana Republican Party, said:
this will be first time to experience a hurricane. I’m actually looking forward to the experience.
I doubt the locals whose families, homes and businesses are at risk are looking forward to the hurricane much at all. However, I can’t blame him for a lack of excitement over hearing Republican dullards recite speeches day and night.
You can read the rest of Brown’s piece on the Gazette website–complete with spelling and grammatical errors. Brown also chronicles some of the edifying experiences he has already been a part of, such as seeing Karl Rove in baggage claim and learning that some convention events have been cancelled.Tweet