Tag Archives: Montanafesto

GOP Chair Behind Racist ‘Watermelon Trap for Obama’ Post Won’t Seek Re-Election

Says She’s Been Thinking About Resigning for Months to “Spend More Time With Boyfriend”

by Cowgirl

The Billings Gazette is reporting today that the Chair of Montana’s largest GOP county group won’t seek re-election and is instead “looking forward to spending some time with my wonderful boyfriend.”

Jennifer Olsen, the Billings GOP Chair, was caught posting a photo of a device designed to trap president Obama by luring him with a watermelon in February.

Olsen at first refused to comment on the post.  She kept mum while allowing the GOP to release an idiotic statement on her behalf, defending her on grounds that “none of Olsen’s 1,000 or so Facebook friends have corroborated” that they ever received the posting, and that the possibility thus exists that Olsen “may have been hacked.”

Later, Olsen issued a garbled statement accusing the Montanafesto blog author (a woman with an impeccable reputation who posted a screenshot of Olsen’s Facebook page which clearly showed that Olsen posted the photo) of faking the screenshot.

But the shoe finally dropped for Olsen when a young conservative who was friends with the Chair on Facebook came forward and told reporters at the Billings Outpost that he received Olsen’s racist Facebook post in his news feed. He even took a screenshot of the incident.

Olsen told the Gazette that she will “remain a politically active Republican.”

They Keep Saying They Aren’t Racist, but…

by Cowgirl

One of Montana’s leading Tea Party figures has posted a photo for a device she says can lure the President.  Here it is–a Tea Party animal trap for a black person.

Here’s Olsen’s post, courtesy of the Montanafesto blog.

Yellowstone County Republican Central Committee

Jennifer Olsen is the leader of Montana’s largest TEA Party faction, the Yellowstone County Republican party in Billings.  She also leads the Yellowstone County Montana Shrugged TEA Party.

Documents: Hill Was in Business with Marijuana Grower

A fascinating item was brought to my attention this week.

It seems that Rick Hill, GOP candidate for Governor, was a business partner with Tom Daubert in some sort of venture.  Daubert is the medical marijuana provider who recently pled guilty to federal charges.

And it gets better. The company that Hill and Daubert founded was called….ready?   “Mature Leisure.”  Bwahahahahaaaaa!

I know this all sounds bizarre, but I’m not making it up.   Posted here are Mature Leisure, Inc.’s articles of incorporation, which were filed with the Secretary of State back in the day, and have now been sent to me by a sharp tipster who gets kudos.

Daubert, by the way, is the subject of the excellent new movie entitled “Code of the West” which details the unnecessary prosecution of Daubert and the heavy-handed law enforcement tactics brought into Montana by the U.S. Justice Department.

Daubert worked hard to lobby for the sick, and has paid for it with a suspended jail sentence thanks to a bunch of federal prosecutors who never got laid in college, weren’t cool enough to smoke pot, and so are permanently angry about it.

The question now  is, why was Rick Hill in business with Daubert?

Mature Leisure.  Hmmm.  That has a certain ring to it, like maybe pot or porn.  Was Rick Hill a pot smoker or pot grower, or perhaps a porn peddler?  Is there some other form of “mature leisure” that he indulges in, or attempted to sell to the masses?  Perhaps a swingers’ club or an S&M lounge?

Or is there a perfectly reasonable and mundane explanation for this business venture, as I would suspect there ought to be?  Hard to imagine they would have registered a marijuana growing company with the State of Montana in the 1990s.

But what about the mere fact that Hill was once associating closely with somebody whom he now believes (you can be sure) to be a criminal of the first order?  What does Hill have to say about that?  For that matter, what do Jeff Essmann and the other anti-cannabis crusaders think?  I’m sure Montanafesto will want to weigh in here.

Finally, perhaps a more salient point for purposes of this important election:  The company appears to have been capitalized with a significant investment, but went belly-up.  Add this to Rick Hill’s portfolio of other questionable enterprises, including losing his money (and that of his investors) in a ponzi scheme.

The Montana GOP Hypocrite of the Week Award Goes to…

…Republican state legislators David Howard and Champ Edmunds.

Rep. Champ Edmunds is a father of two who says the Bible is his favorite book and hosts a Bible study group at his home.  Rep. David Howard is a married mouthbreather who compares poor people to animals.

But there is one thing they have in common.  They both enjoyed a donkey porn video enough to share it on their Facebook pages.  Here are the screenshots.  Looks like Judge Nels Swandal is also “in.”  Swandal is the Livingston conservative judge who made the news recently for some questionable behavior.

And so, for using their Facebook pages to lecture others on morality and family values, and then using those same Facebook pages to post donky porn, these elected officials are the lucky winners of the Montana Cowgirl Blog GOP Hypocrite of the Week Awards.

Reps. Howard and Edmunds, take some time to celebrate your awards, but please, keep any records of the celebratory activity you choose to yourselves.

H/T Montanafesto

Political Quick Hits

Judge Rules Against Head of Local Anti-Gay Movement

A district judge has ruled against Robert Dellwo, the leader of the opposition to the Helena non-discrimination ordinance. Dellwo is the head of the unaccredited Helena Christian School, which is affiliated with East Helena’s Canyon Ferry Baptist Church. Apparently the school borrowed money to build a subdivision but didn’t pay it back. At one time, the church proposed that 800 new homes be built in an area already struggling with water shortages.   The school wanted to build the subdivision on the site of an old cyanide mine, which also raised concerns about contaminated soil.

What the church and Christian school  will do with their own subdivision is unknown.  Montanans tend to be wary of religious colonies after the Church Universal and Triumphant started one outside Yellowstone Park. CUT was the bunch who believed that the world was going to end of a nuclear holocaust at a particular hour and minute on April 23, 1990. They built a massive underground bomb shelter up near Gardiner, MT and stocked it to the rafters with illegally purchased semi-automatic weapons, in preparation for The End (as reported by the Bozeman Daily Chronicle, Feb. 27, 1995; Bozeman Daily Chronicle, March 14, 1995).

Dellwo is appealing the ruling.

Today’s Must Read Political Blog Posts

Montanafesto and Intelligent Discontent have today’s must-read posts. Both look at the allegations of corrupt campaign finance practices by GOP Gubernatorial hopeful Ken Miller. The Montanafesto piece is a hilarious look at the contrast between how the Republican portrays himself, and reality. Intelligent Discontent writes about the accusations flying from the other candidates, who have their own troubles.

Three Days Left

The Flathead Democrats are making news for their fun and innovative fundraising. KCFW Missoula TV news  and HXLH Helena both covered the eBay auction of the framed Schweitzer VETO memorabilia set–a reminder of the infamous 2011 legislative session. The auction ends Friday April 27.


Best MT Political Posts of 2011 from Other Blogs

It’s time to honor the top political posts of 2011 from other Montana political blogs.  Here are the 2011 award winners.

Flathead Memo

Sometimes a picture says it all.   James Conner of the Flathead Memo is not just a great political writer.  He’s a top notch photographer too.   His photo of Dennis Rehberg boldly marching in the Kalispell 4th of July Parade between two fire trucks is priceless.   In spite of Rehberg’s phony attempt to appear supportive of firefighters, Rehberg’s lawyers were busy working on his frivolous lawsuit against Billings firefighters.   Rehberg sought a bailout from Billings taxpayers after his scrub brush was burned in a forest fire.



It’s great that Montana is seeing more women bloggers.  Especially women with backbone like Montanafesto.  First, she broke the Rick Hill mermaid scandal: Republican Rick Hill’s Mermaid Mistress: A Sordid Tail.

She also provided the best ever description of a campaign event.  In a comment here on the Montana Cowgirl Blog, she described Jeff Essmann’s campaign announcement for governor as “an exciting world class event.”  So funny.


From Eternity to Here

D. Gregory Smith at From Eternity to Here held the Montana Republican Party’s feet to the fire for their official platform position claiming it should be illegal to be gay in Montana.  Read Montana Republicans: Officially Homophobes And Bigots?


Left in the West

Rob Kailey at Left in the West has connections to the national online community.  He represented Montana at Netroots Nation in 2011.  His posts are a often good source of information on how the rest of the world views right wing activity in Montana. High Country Extremism is but one great example of this.


Intelligent Discontent

Pogie has posted a list of the most popular 2011 blog posts from Intelligent Discontent.  There are several great posts on the list, especially: How Eager Are Progressives to Elect Senator Rehberg?



Button Valley Bugle 

The Button Valley Bugle expressed outrage on behalf of all Montanans when it was uncovered that we were all contributing to TEA Party Republican Dennis Rehberg’s campaign for U.S. Senate–without our knowledge.  Franking my dear, you should give a damn is a great post.


Political Quick Hits


Flathead Beacon political reporter Dan Testa is headed off to start a new job, but not without some parting advice for his fellow political reporters.  One worthy example:

Any time a public official describes a piece of legislation as “another tool in the tool box,” take a shot of Jägermeister from the bottle you keep with you at all times.

This tired phrase has been trotted out by many tools, from Rick Hill’s slick congressional spokesperson, to TEA Party Representative David Howard, (R- Park City)–and probably even a few Dems.  Testa was a good addition to the political reporting mix in Montana, often reporting on stories that others missed.  Good luck to him on his next endeavor.


Bad News for the GOP

Bad news for the Republicans aiming to get elected in Montana, and I don’t just mean the rumored entry of Attorney General Steve Bullock to the race for Governor.  I’m talking about Jeff Essmann’s announcement that he is “actively considering” a run for Governor in 2012.  You might think such an announcement would be good news, at least for the frontrunners Miller and Hill, as Essmann certainly has no chance of winning the nomination.  But the more time Essmann gets in the spotlight, the more Montanans will be reminded of nuttiest legislative session in state history,  because Essmann was a member of the GOP leadership who presided over it.  Essmann’s foray into statewide politics will make it a lot harder for the Republican party to disassociate itself from that debacle in 2012. H/t Montanafesto.


Anti-Facts, Anti-Science

 From Eternity to Here has an interesting post up this week about the “trending GOP tendency to deny science, knowledge- and maybe, common sense- in favor of the popularly held beliefs of uneducated, superstitious people.” Go read it.

Rick Hill Responds to Adultery Charge by Religious Right

It has been fun watching the infighting among Montana Republicans–played out through a series of Christian conservative emails and on the right-wing Montanafesto blog–about whether Rick Hill’s extramarital activities with a barmaid, some years ago, are sufficient to disqualify him as a conservative worthy of nomination for governor.

Now it has gotten even better.  Yesterday, Rick Hill (surprisingly) issued a response to the blast e-mail about him his infidelities.  In doing so, Hill has not only taken the Religious Right’s bait, but he has also, in my opinion, made things worse by playing the old and tired “family card” and “victim card”.

Hill’s full statement can be viewed here.  In it, Hill decries the general practice of negative attacks in politics, and expresses outrage at “attacks on his family”– by which he means an e-mail from a right wing conservative, simply stating that an adulterer who touts his “family values” should not be the GOP nominee for governor, and that Rick Hill would lose a general election.

The e-mail from the apparently uber-religious Nancy Davis can be viewed here. It contains news articles from the 1990s, including one with a statement by Hill’s ex-wife, Jennifer Spaulding, who Hill cheated on, and who came public about Hill’s cheating because she couldn’t stand to see Hill hypocritically slamming his political opponents for “lacking family values.”  Spaulding says Hill was an emotionally abusive husband, and that he constantly ridiculed her for being unattractive and uneducated.

Hill admitted the whole affair, including a very disturbing story, related by Spaulding, about how she brought her kids to the bar to confront him, and Hill was hanging out with the cocktail waitress, took one look at his family, and told them to get lost.

And now Hill is playing the victim. This is a bad idea.

Why? Hill has a terrible record of very dirty campaigning. When he was running for re-election in 2000 (before he suddenly dropped out of the race), he trashed his opponent, Nancy Keenan, for “lacking an understanding of family values” because “she has no children of her own.” It was later revealed that Keenan had had a hysterectomy after cancer as a young woman. Hill’s accusation was a calculated and typical Montana GOP veiled suggestion about lesbianism. It was as ugly as politics has ever gotten in Montana.  Hill’s GOP henchmen made hundreds of thousands of robo-calls all over the state, asking voters if they were “concerned about an unmarried and childless woman representing Montana in Congress.”

Also, in 1998 it was revealed that Hill had deployed his new (second) wife, Betti Hill, to assist a shady, third-party group in producing a TV attack-ad against Hill’s opponent, Bill Yellowtail. This attack ad accused Yellowtail of (you guessed it) lacking family values, based on the fact that he’d hit his wife many years earlier.  Betti’s involvement was discovered when a memo surfaced, written by the head of the third party group (the TRIAD group), mentioning that it had been in communication with Betti Hill.

Hill has also deployed his sharp elbows against members of his own party, in primaries.  Those of us in the Ag community with a long memory will recall that Hill smeared Dwight MacKay, a rancher who ran against Hill in the GOP primary in 1998, by insinuating that MacKay was a fake rancher.  It was pure smear, and pure lies.  But Hill had lots of money and MacKay did not, so it worked. Montanafesto has a few more examples of Hill “going negative” in GOP primaries.

The other thing I love about Hill’s response is that he wants us to believe, to presume, that he was cheating on a young wife with very young children by saying because, in his own words, he “had a difficult marriage.”  This is an attempt to confuse the chicken and the egg.  Hill probably had a difficult marriage because he was was cheating on his wife with a hot young cocktail waitress.

Hill should just admit that he did it, explain that it was many years ago, and then move on.  Instead, he’s now blaming others, and blaming “politics”.  He should have let the whole issue remain in the blogosphere and just ignored it.

Crocodile Tears from a GOP Legislator – UPDATED

When Republican Representative James Knox (R-Billings Heights) testified in front of a Senate committee this week in favor of repealing Montana’s medical marijuana initiative, he appeared to be near tears.

It turns out, however, that Knox is hardly the distraught moral naif he pretends to be.  According the Montanafesto blog, Knox must have put aside these qualms when he proposed a contract to create a website for a medical marijuana business. UPDATE: New information has come to light.  See the comment section.

Montanafesto has the story, the contract, and an exposé of the profit arrangements other opponents of medical cannabis had set up, presumably before they launched a petition campaign to repeal the voter passed initiative.  UPDATE #2: The Billings Gazette is reporting this story h/t Montanafesto.

As for the tears, Knox needs to channel his bottled up emotions towards a more worthy end — if he really feels so strongly.   Rep. Knox has not introduced any bills related to repealing or tightening regulations on medical marijuana. Knox has also voted to include large cuts to prevention programs, mental health care, and drug treatment in the GOP’s budget proposal.

Lee Newspapers poll, released today, found most Montanans prefer to tighten regulations on the current law over repealing the citizens’ initiative.  The poll results cast further doubt on polling done on this subject by GOP operatives earlier this year, as well as on the operatives earlier polling work on other subjects.