A public opinion poll was released today showing that Congressman Steve Daines has an abysmal 39% job approval rating. The poll is conducted annually by Montana State University professors and students, in Billings. Steve Bullock has a strong rating at 53%. Baucus and Tester are in the 40s, Tester having perhaps been unavoidably dragged down by what’s going on in Washington, and by Obama whose numbers in Montana are very poor (29%).
If we are to believe this poll, it means that Daines is the most unpopular Montana elected official since Judy Martz.
Daines must certainly be considering pulling the plug on a Senate run. But worse than that, he could even be staring at the possibility of a contested primary, in either a House or Senate bid.
Already lately, the Right Wing of the Right Wing of the Tea Party has begun protesting Daines’s vote to reopen the government. Daines broke with the Tea Party at the last minute on the government shutdown, and voted, when the Republicans had clearly lost, for the Democratic position.
It was a major belly flop of a dive, however. Daines was one of the nuts in Congress who helped orchestrate the shutdown, costing America billions in GDP and hurting our credit rating, and costing Montana jobs and economic activity. We were hurt on reservations and in the tourist centered areas of Yellowstone and Glacier, for the parks and tribal governments were closed down along with the federal government.
Here is a picture of Daines’s signature on an a letter, written and signed by idiots, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing but Tea Party stupidity, and calling for a government shutdown unless Obamacare is defunded. Notices Daines’s John Hancock on the last page, big and prominent and proud.
But then the GOP’s gambit went south, and Daines (in an increasingly common pattern for rookie Tea Party gunners) realized his recklessness did an about face, to save face. But at 39%, we will assume that the damage was already done.
I doubt the people who still haven’t been able to return to work on reservation communities, or the innkeepers and restaurant owners and hoteliers and outfitters and their employees who make a living on tourism, are going to give him much credit for acting contrite at the last minute, and blowing with the wind. The Chipewa Cree tribe laid-off 86 full-time employees and 37 temporary employees. Those were lay-offs, not furloughs. They also furloughed 33 more employees, according to a tribal council member’s statement on the tribe’s website.
Despite having a blueprint for failure that he could have learned from–namely, the one provided Denny Rehberg, who was a loud and proud Tea Partier and realized, too late, that he’d made a huge mistake by being one–Daines stepped in the same pile of manure as Denny. And like Denny, he is clearly going to pay for it.