Tag Archives: lame

With Sloppy Earmark, Dennis Rehberg Really Does Want to Hurt Your Kids

If you’re paying any attention to what Montana’s congressman is doing (Intelligent Discontent is), you probably know that Dennis Rehberg has spent the last two weeks defending his controversial earmark on a House spending bill.  The earmark, or “rider” as it is known, was so bad, Rehberg’s own party leaders had to pull it from the bill yesterday amid an uproar from health advocates and anti-smoking groups.


As The Hill reports:


“Rehberg’s language was seen as controversial, and even Rehberg himself agreed to remove the language from the bill.”


Whoa.  Why?


Immediately after Rehberg introduced and passed the earmark in his committee two weeks ago, the American Cancer Society, American Heart Association, the American Lung Association, the Campaign for Tobacco Free Kids and the American Academy of Pediatrics—to name just a few—sent urgent warnings to members of Congress.


Rehberg tried to require the FDA to make regulations based only on what he calls “hard science.”  If he had his way, tobacco companies would get free rein to market cigarettes to kids by adding menthol and flavorings.  It means schools lunches don’t have to stick to basic nutrition standards.  The unintended consequences of Rehberg’s sloppy earmark abound.


But apparently Rehberg had no clue about the controversy until just this week, when he finally agreed to pull his earmark under intense pressure from everyone but Montana’s press corps.


That’s right, major national newspapers have been covering the Rehberg earmark daily.


The LA Times editorialized even against it.  U.S. News and World Report called it“gibberish”—slamming Montana’s Congressman in the process.  After this story crossed yesterday questioning Rehberg’s ties to big tobacco, his Twitter trend tanked.  Even Larry David’s ex-wife jumped into the debate (yes, that Larry David).


But incredibly, not a single newspaper or reporter in Montana has written about the controversial Rehberg earmark (I take that back, Missoula Independent, I guess you sort of did).


I know Montana editors aren’t known for allowing their reporters to aim for ace journalism, but come on!


As for the earmark itself, it’s yet another classic example of Rehberg shooting first, then asking questions later.


Sloppy legislation is what happens when, after a full decade in Congress, a lazy millionaire goat collector finally tries to do something other than name post offices.


Montana GOP Out of Ideas, Gives Up

Now, word on the street is that the GOP’s light-on-jobs, heavy on crazy-pants legislative agenda is out of ideas, and plans to adjourn the session early.  Perhaps if Republicans actually had a credible jobs agenda, the schedule would be more robust.  But the best they were able to come up with, as reported by the Billings Gazette, isn’t much:

Perhaps the largest piece of the package aims to give metal mines, such as for gold and silver, more assurances up-front they will get their environmental permits.

Their “top” bill is only “a solution in search of a problem.”  Over the last six years there have been more new mines and development in Montana than any time within the last 30 years.

On this list of so-called jobs bills are House Bill 100 and Senate Bill 201, which simply create piles of paper in the form of additional reports for legislators on bills.

Another “jobs” bill undoes a new building code requirement that basements are insulated in new home construction.  Not sure how less basement insulation creates jobs, as it would seem that the insulation would mean more builders and installers would be needed.  Perhaps Republicans will comment here to explain.

The GOP leaders made no mention of the 84 nutty Republican-sponsored bills which Legislative Services has identified as containing potential constitutional problems which has been posted online at www.mtcapitolreport.org/unconstitutionalgopbills.  Nor did they bring up any of their bills to restrict Montanans’ voting rights.

GOP Leading Man is a Bit Crusty

The Republican party’s leading man is a bit crusty, to the point that he’s all excited about the fact that he has sent out an email.  From that email:

When I last ran for public office over ten years ago, the Internet was still fairly new, and the social media revolution was in its infancy.  But I’m excited to get to try new things with this campaign, and I’ve made it my goal to be on the cutting edge of technology this election cycle.  It is my goal to be the candidate all others are trying to catch up to in our online presence.  I want the most Facebook friends, the most Twitter followers, the most subscribers to my blog, and most importantly, I want to raise the most money online.

Hill’s continual image makeover routine is already tired to the rest of us.  But Hill is ecstatic.   He wants us to spread the word he has even updated his new website,  where one can find super-cool information about how he, too, was a wrestler, no doubt a wise strategic move to compete with primary opponent, most inspirational wrestler Corey Stapelton.

Hill even tries to insert his twee new branding into his campaign disclaimer:

Paid for by A Lot of Folks for Rick Hill, Republican.

This reminds me of how AIG discovered that its name was associated with bad behavior and thought that the solution is to change the name. Will the Hill now be known as “The Cool Dude Full of Awesomeness?”

Hill’s giddy email about how he’s has discovered exciting technology that used to be new can be viewed below the fold.

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