As oil spills into Montana’s once pristine Yellowstone River, which flows out of Yellowstone National Park, the Chair of the Montana Republican Party writes in the Missoulian today that ExxonMobil–the company responsible for the oil spill near Billings– “should stick it to Missoula.”
The irony of the screenshot here is really beyond words.
But all irony aside this is a pretty damning letter. Rehberg’s campaign manager has been going on the radio to say Republicans are going after Missoula voters. Too bad now we know how Rehberg’s party really feels about jobs in Missoula…he’s advocating that the company not spend money in local Missoula stores and hotels because they refuse to take a position with him on the megaload shipments.
And it’s not just GOP Chair Will Deschamps. Word on the street is that Republican Rep. Dan Kennedy (R-Laurel) thanked Exxon at an EPA town meeting last night, and GOP Gov candidate Ken Miller (R-Laurel) told listeners to the Voices of Montana program that he thought the Governor, who was critical of Exxon on Rachel Maddow and other national news outlets, was being “too harsh” on the company.
UPDATE: Rob Kailey has a good take on this at Left in the West.
The Montana GOP railed against the overreaching federal government into areas that they say states should have the powers to decide during the election cycle.
TEA Partiers claimed that by passing federal laws that weren’t popular at the state level, they were engaging in nothing short of tyranny. Now, these very same people, now elected to positions at the state level are turning around and doing the same thing to local governments.
TEA Party lawmaker Kris Hanson (R-Havre) would allow state government to override local ordinances and would require re-legalizing discrimination in our communities.
Yes, it seems too hypocritical to be true, but Hansen’s bill would actually overturn the popular Missoula Nondiscrimination Ordinance that so many worked so hard to pass last spring. The ordinance protects LGBT people from discrimination in the areas of housing, employment, and public accommodations. Nothing controversial here. But Rep. Hansen’s bill doesn’t stop with Missoula. It would prohibit any locality from passing an ordinance, resolution, or policy that protects a class of people beyond what the Montana Human Rights Act already covers. And it’s retroactive, which calls into question any personnel policy or resolution that a locality has already passed.
After Montana has failed to protect LGBT Montanans at the state level for decades, localities have decided to take the initiative and protect their own residents. This is the legal right of cities and counties across Montana. And since when did the GOP have a thing against local control?
Hansen’s HB 516 will be heard at 8am on Friday, February 18th in House Judiciary.
Since Sarah Palin was in Missoula today, it is a fitting time for a quick analysis of the latest Vanity Fair article on Palin that everyone is talking about, and how it relates to us.
The 10,000 word article has some salacious details and attempts to make some further revelations into Palin’s character and motivation, but what was most interesting was the revelation of how the financing for Sarah Palin’s speaking tours are structured. It’s worth reading the article, but essentially here’s how they say it works.
Sarah Palin decides to have an event in a given town. Next, some people in the town are presumably contacted by the he Palin organization. These are the people that are going to to front the money to pay for it it. The organization is set up, and is somehow funded. They set up a website like “Americans Speaking Out About America” or some such title. That organization exists for that brief period of time.
Palin comes to speak. Then as soon as she leaves town the organization is disbanded and those that were involved are reimbursed don’t talk about it anymore. The website goes down, and no one knows anything about what the source of funding ultimately was and how she was paid. Presumably this is all done legally, but it makes it difficult to “follow the money.”
Why does this matter? We’ll never know to whom she is beholden if she ever ran for president, nor who is paying her to push her message now and why, or at least it would be very difficult to find out.
The KPAX earlier reported and the Missoula Independent wrote a longer piece about how Palin’s visit would be at least partially fronted by a Missoula fan of Christian rock and business man, who would not disclose how much money he is fronting to bring Sarah Palin here. The article did not include information about what percentage of her fee was fronted by him, and what other funding sources were involved, if any, and how he will be reimbursed. Presumably because the event organizers and the Palin organization also refused to say.