Here are my predictions for the most important races in the primary, the state legislative races.
While some bloggers have chosen to focus on the races that Lee Newspapers once deemed important, the real question on everyone’s mind is who will prevail tomorrow night- the TEA Party extremists or the main street republicans. Nowhere is this battle for the GOP hotter than where incumbents face challengers – from the left and from the right.
These are among the key bellwether races to watch tomorrow night.
Certainly I’ll also be watching what happens with the TEA Party’s fake Trojan horse dems, and what happens in primaries with MT Family Foundation recruits like Debra Lamm in Livingston, Marissa Stockton in East Helena, and Ronalee Skees vs. Frank Garner is the Flathead. The Flathead has several interesting legislative races to watch actually.
The Missoula County Sheriff’s race, where two fake democrats are running against T.J. McDermott, is important. Tim Ravndal is running for County Commissioner in Broadwater County, which is frightening. Another race to watch for those seeking to take the TEA Party’s pulse is the Gallatin County Commission race, where Don Seifert faces TEA Partier Barb Blum (backed by Roger Koopman).
Let me know if you agree or disagree and what other races you’re watching in the comments.
|HD 17||Rep. Christi Clark of Choteau vs. TEA Parter Jim Anderson. Anderson is the TEA Partier who hijacked the Teton County Republican Party’s annual shrimp peel fundraiser for the TEA Party. Local Republicans are not pleased. Prediction: Clark|
|HD 18||Rep. Rob Cook of Conrad vs. endorsed TEA Partier Ann Morren. Prediction: Cook|
|HD 19||Rep. Roger Hagan of Great Falls vs. TEA Partier Randy Pinocci, who is backed by Gary Marbut. Prediction: Hagan|
|HD 27||Rep. Roy Hollandsworth of Brady vs. right winger Darrold Hutchinson. Prediction: Hollandsworth|
|HD 30||Rep. Ryan Osmundson of Buffalo/vs. Right-winger and 86-year-old Jim Paugh. Prediction: Osmundson|
|HD 40||Rep. Tom Berry vs. TEA Party winger Ray Gorman. Prediction: Berry|
|HD 53||TEA Party wingut Rep. Sarah Laszloffy, age 20 of Laurel, who attended a school which teaches you how to bring people back from the dead. No Joke. TEApublican Rep. Sarah Laszloffy is an alum of the Bethel School of Supernatural Ministry. (She’s also the daughter of MT Family Foundation wackjob Jeff Laszloffy) vs. former long-time legislator Mark Noennig, well respected by the business community. Prediction: Toss-up. Noennig can win this and voters would be much better represented by him, but papa bear Laszloffy is likely to pull out all the stops to keep his
|HD 71||In Madison County, Rep. Ray Shaw vs. Birther Bob Wagner, a former Representative infamous for losing economic development for his district and making an ass of himself on national television. Voters already ousted Wagner in favor of Shaw once. Prediction: Shaw|
|HD 72||Rep. Jeff Wellborn of Dillan vs. TEA Party college Republican Brooke Erb. Prediction: Wellborn|
|HD 80||Rep. Mike Miller vs. Patrick Johnson/Ron Vandevendor. Prediction: Miller, since not enough Montanans will have heard of his political practices shennanigans. Miller is being challenged from the left by Patrick Johnson. If Miller is elected, the primary election won’t actually decided the final outcome, because Miller faces being thrown off the ballot for political practices violations. So does Art Wittich, and so do others.|
|HD 92||David “Doc” Moore of Missoula vs. Larry Dunham Prediction: Moore|
|HD 93||Rep. Dan Salomon of Ronan vs. challenger Frank Delgado. Frank Delgado is a responsible Main Street republican challenging GOPer Salomon from the left in a seat the dems will likely take back in November. Prediction: Salomon|
|HD 99||Rep. Ed Greef of Stevensville faces pro-business, pro-economic development non-nutjob Russ Vogel. Prediction: Greef|
|SD 4||Former Kalispell Mayor Tammy Fisher vs. Rep. Mark Blasdel of Kalispell. The race is hotly contested. Prediction: Blasdel is an inferior pick and a right-winger and Fisher is a pro-business Republican, but the power of incumbency is strong. Blasdel has raised more money. This is an open seat. However, Blasdel was an extreme right legislative leader in the house last session, and faces a primary from the more rational wing of the party. Would love to be wrong on this one.|
|SD 9||Sen. Llew Jones/vs. TEA Party tax dodger Joe Large in Toole, Pondera and Glacier Counties. Prediction: Jones|
|SD 14||Anti-education lobbyist Rep. Kris Hansen of Havre is now running for Senate against Carl Mattson of Chester. Mattson is the superior candidate. He doesn’t favor using your tax dollars to subsidize private sectarian schools. Hansen has been paid to promote that terrible idea. Prediction: Hansen|
|SD 20||Rep. Duane Ankney (east of Billings) vs. TEA Party booster clubber Barry Usher of Colstrip Prediction: Ankney|
|SD 29||Right-winger birther Rep. Joanne Blyton of Red Lodge vs. Ultra nutjob and imbecile extraordinaire Rep. David Howard. Howard is a man who has, somewhat obsessively, devoted his Facebook page to criticizing gay sex. So of course, the GOP picked to lead the Children and Families legislative committee last session. Howard will face off against Red Lodge Republican Joanne Blyton. Blyton is a birther who actually voted for Birther Bob’s birther bill. (You can see a pdf of HB 205, the birther bill, vote here.) Yes, that’s the same bill that later made the Montana Legislature famous on CNN. Prediction: Tossup. This is also an open seat, but is included here because both Blyton and Howard served in the House.|
|SD 34||Rep. Gordon Vance vs. Rep. Ted Washburn both of Bozeman. One of the most bloody GOP primary battles of the year. Gordon Vance is the TEA Party nutjob who vote to conduct all state business in gold. Vance and is trying to
|SD 43||Sen. Scott Boulanger of Darby (appointed, not elected) vs. Rep. Pat Connell.Sen. Scott Boulanger R-Darby loves being pictured with the infamous bullet-ridden Obama outhouse. He’s running in a GOP primary against Rep. Pat Connell. Boulanger was one of ten Republicans who actually voted to take freedoms away from Montanans by keeping being gay an imprisonable offense in Montana. Voters in the area have already picked Pat Connell over Boulanger once before, when Boulanger ran for house in 2012. Boulanger lost, and the only reason he’s in office now is because he was appointed by the Ravalli County Republican Central Committee after another legislator was elected to the Public Service Commission. Prediction: Connell|
|SD 27||Another open seat where a right winger from the House faces a pro-business wing challenger. TEA Partier Cary Smith of Billings faces former legislator and dentist Don Roberts. Prediction: Tossup|