Rick Hill’s entire campaign consists of stomping about the state muttering about the supposed burdens being put on business and the economy. All of this is pure fiction.
Here’s Hill’s basic stump speech: the economy is terrible in Montana because of too much regulation, to many taxes, spiraling work comp costs, and assorted other liberal evils. There is simply too much government, in effect, and thus no jobs can be created any time soon, until these shackles are cast off, and business is out from under this terrible yolk.
Take a look at a recent Missoulian article on Hill’s visit to Victor, Montana.
“We’re going through one of the toughest patches, economically, in the history of Montana,” Hill said.
Hill also pointed to the national debt and tried to make the false claim that Montana is in the same boat – even though we have a $400 million dollar surplus.
“We tend to look at Washington and say we’ve got this pyramiding of debt that is going to smother this country if we don’t do something about it,” Hill said. “But we have similar problems in Montana.”
It’s a rather sad strategy: he denigrates, derides and degrades (trashes, in essence) the state of Montana, the Montana economy, and state government–even though we have one of the best economies and most efficient state governments in America. He and his fellow GOP knuckle draggers tried to link Montana to the problems going on in Washington D.C.–and to a demonized version of the President (since he can find no local democrats to get his base foaming mad about.) Mike Dennison writes about this in his column today.
1. Under Democrats, Montana has developed more energy (wind, coal, oil, gas) than at any time in history.
2. For the last several years Montana has been ranked consistently among the top ten states in America for our tax climate and our business climate. We are one of the best places in America to start a business, across the board–the 8th best in the nation.
3. We have one of the lowest unemployment rates in the nation. This month, Montana’s economy added 1,300 new jobs-8,600 for the year. This is the greatest amount added in a month since before 2008.
4. This has not gone unnoticed by Montana voters, for when asked, 55% of them recently said in a survey that the state economy is on the right track as opposed to the wrong track. In only three other states in America did voters respond so positively to that question. In most states, voters think their state economy sucks.
5. Finally, Montana was recently rated as the best fiscally managed state in America. Eighty-three percent of Montanans think that state government is managing taxpayer money wisely. No other state came even close.
6. And why shouldn’t they feel this way? Montana has a $400 million surplus. In fact, for the last five years Montana has had a record sized surplus. And only a handful of states have surpluses right now. Most are in financial crisis. And Dems have cut more taxes than Republicans ever did.
7. Don’t just take my (liberal) word for it. Ask FoxNews or the Wall Street Journal, both of whom recently editorialized about the spectacular fiscal shape the state is in. For that matter, so did Denny Rehberg and Newt Gingrich. And so has every major newspaper in Montana.
8. The extra dough that Democrats have saved taxpayers has been (1) returned in the form of a rebate (the largst taxpayer rebate ever in Montana) and (2) spent on education, a historic investment in schools.
These are important points that show that Rick Hill’s entire campaign amounts to stale hot air. The irony, of course, is the Rick Hill is a teat-sucker of major proportions. He sucked large at the government teat, earning almost a million bucks in taxpayer dollars as a landlord who rented property to the government. All while his wife was working in the governor’s office. And he’s complaining about “too much spending”?
Aside from being ineffective politically (because the polls show us that voters side with Democrats and like what they are seeing out of state government), it’s very unpatriotic and a truly awful dereliction of one’s civic duty, to throw your state under the bus, tell lies about it, in order to win an election. Democrats like Schweitzer try to recruit businesses and market the state’s assets, and the GOP undercuts the whole effort by telling the whole world how bad Montana is for business, when nothing could be further from the truth.
And remember, there is a reason you see the GOP demonize President Obama, as we saw this weekend in Missoula and last night on the Rachel Maddow show (clip below). It’s because they need to present voters with a Democratic boogeyman, and they can’t find one in in Montana. You can watch last night’s Maddow clip here: