Tag Archives: Steve Daines

Political Quick Hits

Shame on Skyview

Skyview High School is targeting young women with a new dress code – a ban on yoga pants and leggings.  Young men are not prohibited from wearing workout pants to school–it is only young women. Shame on Skyview for doing so–and kudos to the young women and men fighting this policy.

Students have put up an online petition drive to change the policy, led by Ms. Dayah Dover. What say you readers – how about some solidarity with our young sisters at Skyview.  Let’s give the school board a reality check from the adult perspective too.  You can sign here in support of these young women. 

As Ms. Raegan Bunting wrote on the online petition drive site:

I agree with [the petition to fight the dress code] because while tights are not pants, leggings, jeggings and yoga pants are. This change in dress code is sexualizing girls’ bodies by the mere fact that it was created because it is assumed that males are distracted by girls that wear leggings. But there is a difference between pants being tight because they are the wrong size, or pants being tight because that is simply the style of the clothing. Other articles of clothing that are tight include pencil skirts and certain dresses that. And if one argues that leggings and yoga pants should not be worn in schools due to their lack of professionalism, then schools should also ban other unprofessional articles of clothing such as sweat pants, skinny jeans, t-shirts, hoodies, and anything else that would not be considered appropriate for a “professional environment.”

The school board also seems to be suggesting that the none of the gentlemen at Skyview have any self control over themselves, which I think is also untrue. Mostly from what I noticed during my time at Skyview is that none of the boys in my class could not concentrate on the lesson because Sally chose to wear jeggings that day.

I believe that the school board is wrong in making their decision to ban leggings. It is sexist towards women and men, in the sense that women should not be allowed to show their completely covered figure, and that men have no self control over their bodies. I hope that Skyview reconsiders their choice.

War Between the Factions

The bitter battle between TEA Party and moderate Republicans rages on.  Today, Cowgirl tipsters are reporting that Cascade County Republican Party has ousted their own Chair, Rep. Roger Hagen (R-Cascade County.)  At the time of this posting there is no word on who will replace Hagen as CCRCC leader.   Rep.  Hagan is a moderate Republican who had ran for re-election but  was defeated by Tea Party fanatic Randy Pinnoci last June. 

What Do Happy Plumbers Know?

This video is making the rounds on Youtube and Facebook. Take a look.

Steve Daines and the Environmental Boogeyman

Steve Daines is an embarrassment.

Steve Daines is an embarrassment. He’s bad for the state.

Steve Daines has a new radio ad on the air, in which Daines portrays himself as the protector of the timber industry, keeping timber mills and loggers safe from “fringe environmentalists” and “extreme environmental groups.”  A narrator also describes Daines as “ranked as one of the most effective congressmen” although she doesn’t cite any study or group that made this dubious determination.

 Listen to this idiotic advertisement, or read the transcript, here.

Daines has simply dusted off a twenty-year-old playbook for these ads:  Environmentalists are shutting down the state and costing us jobs, and we must fight against their lawsuits and the federal regulations that they have persuaded Obama to enact.  Montanans could all be rich from natural resource development if the environmentalists would simply get out of the way.

There’s one problem with the radio ad: In the sixty seconds of narration and sound bites from Daines, timber owners and loggers, nobody cites a single item, a single tangible thing, that environmentalists have recently done to effect the loss of jobs or the decline of the timber industry.  The script is simply Daines and his supporters talking about how he has “stood up” to “environmental radicals.”

Now, if the discussion were about coal or fossil fuels, Daines could at least claim credit for voting against, or opposing publicly, whatever is currently being advocated for in DC by the environmental community, such as EPA regulations, carbon limits, and so and and so forth.  Those are not radical ideas or proposals, but they at least are real.

Daines has instead decided to create a nebulous boogeyman, “the fringe environmentalists,” and claim himself as working hard to vanquish it insofar as it is trying to destroy the timber industry.

There is a reason that Daines can’t point to anything to substantiate his claim, not a single timber sale that has been blocked or federal law that has Obama has signed that have negatively affected the timber business: because there really aren’t any.  The cold fact is that the timber industry–in fact the entire wood products industry–in Montana has been devastated in recent years by one thing, and one thing only: the bursting of the housing bubble.  The market for the product crashed, and has not returned nearly to where it was.

But that doesn’t really matter now, because Daines has discovered, likely through polling and other market research, that if you tell persuadable voters that timber jobs have been lost due to the activities of “fringe environmentalists,” they are ignorant and misinformed enough to believe it.  Which is enough for Daines.  That’s Steve Daines’s brand of leadership.  Enjoy it.

Ire Increases Against Those Hiding from Debates

An interesting week in Montana politics.

Montana Public Radio commentator Evan Barrett published an editorial in the Standard and the Missoulian on how debates strengthen democracy. Montana Secretary of State Linda McCulloch wrote an editorial in the Missoulian about how ducking debates is a disservice voters. And the Bozeman Chronicle editorial board wrote that Zinke was wrong to cancel the only debate with Lewis.

And of course there was the scathing Billings Gazette editorial: Zinke Flunks Political Courage Test. This criticism is especially biting since it is directed at a man whose campaign bus is (improperly) emblazoned with the Navy Seal logo and who was busted trying to take credit for killing Osama bin Laden.

In the U.S. Senate race meanwhile, after Congressman Steve Daines backed out of a televised debate scheduled for October 4, Amanda Curtis is challenging him to answer to Montana voters in series of fourteen debates.  He has not agreed to a single one.

So it seems that the only Montanans left who don’t want the debates are Steve Daines and Ryan Zinke.  These two stale politicians, mired in the stench of the Potomac, believe that Washington politics as usual is all that matters.  Instead of speaking directly to voters, they’ll be saturating the airwaves with dark money dirty campaign ads as is the beltway norm.

 

Daines Has Trouble Garnering Enthusiasm

If the latest unscientific Bozeman Chronicle online poll is indeed an accurate predictor of the US Senate race in Montana, then we should expect Amanda Curtis to defeat Steve Daines this November by a comfortable margin. When I checked early yesterday, she had over 2,000 votes and Daines had only a few hundred.

curtis poll

That’s the difference between Democrats and Republican grassroots.  GOP “young guns” are apparently no match for tech savvy progressives, who quickly voted in large numbers for Curtis.  It has tightened today, but she is still beating him by a 1,000 votes.  By percentage, the current standings are:

Daines         R     35%   (1,488)
Curtis           D    58%   (2,413)
Roots            L      3%     (142)
Undecided            2%      (94)

See live results here.

 

 

 

Montana Democrats, Your Presence Is Requested…

by Cowgirl

A rare, intimate variety of democracy will take its course Saturday morning at the county fairgrounds in Helena, Montana, when the Democratic Party chooses a nominee to replace John Walsh.

Nobody in Montana politics can recall anything quite like this event, so it should make for good theater. Oddly, the proceedings will be both less and more democratic than a normal primary. A small group of party officers from around the state–no more than 175 delegates and possibly as few as 50– will choose the nominee in a caucus. That’s a lot of power in a small group. However, the two most powerful figures in the party–the sitting Democratic senator and governor–don’t appear at this point to have expressed a preference. Which means that Saturday might be, for lack of a better term, a free-for-all. And that’s a good thing, and for bloggers especially.

A candidate that breaks through and excite voters is urgently required. The Governor vetoed 71 bills last session, each bill more idiotic than the next, but if we lose seats he might be unable to sustain his vetoes. Thus the Senate race is perhaps less important than the state legislature in my opinion. Please consult this list of what they’ve proposed in recent years. Greatest hits include House Bill 549, “A Bill To declare that Global Warming is Good for Montana.” This season they are proposing a law that will let sheriffs arrest anyone who tries to implement the Affordable Care Act. There is also a Tea Party-generated ballot measure this year to make voter registration more difficult. Democrats need a showing at the polls to kill it.

Three types of candidates could in theory present themselves on Saturday–big, medium and small. The “big” category, unfortunately, is an empty set. It consists only of two people who could immediately put Daines on the run–Bullock and Schweitzer–both very popular, but both of whom have said they won’t be running.

“Medium” includes politicians whose names many Montana voters are familiar with. But since every current statewide office-holder already sent their regrets (as has Nancy Keenan, former NARAL Pro-Choice America chief and former state superintendent of Montana schools), there’s only one medium sized candidate: John Bohlinger, the former Lt. Governor under Schweitzer. Bohlinger ran and lost to Walsh in the primary but he blames the loss on Harry Reid for having anointed Walsh and sent resources his way (Reid called Bohlinger earlier this year and tried to push him out of the race). There are many party activists who enjoy Bohlinger, but a few who must be persuaded that he no longer harbors any affiliation to Republican causes.

The remainder of the candidates have small followings even if they have big potential. They largely unknown to most Montana voters and include three state legislators–Dave Wanzenried (trucking company employee from Missoula) and Amanda Curtis (teacher from Butte)–as well as Dirk Adams (Wilsall), a former mortgage banker and now rancher who ran against Bohlinger and Walsh in the democratic Party but got only 15% to Bohlinger’s 25% and Walsh’s 60%.

Others have made oblique statements that fall short of committing to a candidacy, or have tried to get surrogates to tweet things like “I’m hearing that so and so is getting into the race.” But this does not count. If you want it, stand up and say so.

Bit of a Stretch

The Montana political world was upended yesterday with the revelation that that John Walsh, our U.S. Senator and candidate, wrote a college paper in which he used language verbatim that he failed to properly attribute.  He cited the sources in footnotes, but he was using the exact language belonging to another author and did not so indicate with quotation marks.

Today, Walsh is saying that he realizes he made a mistake but has shrugged it off by saying that he is not an academic, and that we should look at his entire military record rather than a term paper. That’s a fair point.  He’s not the first person to make such a mistake. Authors of all stripes have done it.  Walsh also says that he was suffering from PTSD at the time, having just returned from Iraq, but made it very clear that he won’t blame his mistake on PTSD.

There is no question that this story will affect Walsh’s candidacy, but it should not disqualify him at all.  He’s a military leader, not Samuel Johnson. It’s not good, but it’s not anything near the outrage that the GOP is making it out to be. If Walsh was a decorated General, Awarded Bronze Star For “Exceptionally Meritorious Service,” the Commander of the National Guard, the Lt. Governor and now U.S. Senator, how can someone say that he is unqualified, in retrospect, to have been all of these things and to have won all of those medals and commendations because of a college term paper?  It’s a bit of a stretch.

Nevertheless, let the circus now begin.

Steve Daines, predictably, is nowhere to be seen or heard on this issue because he knows there’s no percentage, and indeed no need, for him to say anything about it.  But a week or so from now, expect to see a TV ad, probably from the Republican Party, telling us all about John Walsh’s plagiarism with scary music in the background.  Expect also to hear from veterans who will talk about how outraged they are that Walsh would try to excuse plagiarism on PTSD, which he has not done. We might even get a pure swiftboating–hear from some soldier claiming that Walsh never had PTSD.  It’s also interesting that this suddenly becomes a news story just as polls are starting to show Walsh gaining on Daines.

This is politics, and this is what happens when a story like this breaks, and their ain’t much Walsh can do beside put his best face on it and remind voters that Steve Daines plays childrens’ games in Congress and does things like throw tantrums and threaten to default on bills and shut the National Parks down–costing us $45 million in lost tourism and other dollars.  And why is no one talking about how Daines opened all kinds of factories in China while his company laid off people in the U.S.? Meanwhile Walsh served in combat has a 33-year career fighting for Montana and wants to get something done in Washington rather than play games.

As for rumblings from the internet fringe today about whether Walsh should jump off the ticket before the August deadline, enabling the party to put in someone else, I think this would make no sense.  First, there is nobody to replace him with, unless you think John Bohlinger would have a better chance against Daines right now which is debatable.  Brian Schweitzer, Linda McCulloch, Denise Juneau and Monica Lindeen have all taken a pass already. Names like Carol Williams, Dirk Adams and so on, they would be starting at zero against a sitting Congressman, and would have an impossible fundraising hill to climb.

 So this is what it is: Walsh is the best candidate for U.S. Senate, and this too shall pass.

 

Steve Daines Runs Sketchy TV Ad

In case you haven’t seen it, a woman who worked for the Montana National Guard is claiming that she was discriminated against because she was refused a promotion.  She blames John Walsh, because Walsh was the head of the guard in before he was Lt. Gov.

This woman is featured in a TV ad being run by the Steve Daines campaign.  Her name is Cindy Neely and in the ad she says she personally experienced sexual discrimination while at the Guard, because she was repeatedly passed over for a promotion.  Those who were her supervisors (not Walsh, who was not) say she was simply unqualified for the position. Continue reading

New Spoof Video: Detox the Box

Primary angst got you down?

Watch  Women’s Voices for the Earth‘s latest spoof video based on Justin Timberlake’s “Dick in a Box” Saturday Night Live Skit.

It’s called Detox the Box and it calls on Proctor & Gable to “drop the toxics” from tampons and pads. (Funfact: Proctor & Gamble is Steve Daines’ former employer.)

Women’s Voices is a national nonprofit that is based in Missoula, Montana.

 

Watch it here: www.bit.ly/detoxthebox

Daines Caught Pretending to Support Meals on Wheels While Voting to End the Program

This is what I call an online two timing double talking phony.

Steve Daines is a hypocrite and phony.

Steve Daines is a hypocrite.

Congressman Daines’ hypocrisy reached his Facebook page yesterday when posted a staged Meals on Wheels photo op on Facebook to imply he supports the program.  In reality, Daines voted to cut anti-hunger programs that would have left mostly children, seniors and veterans without food.

If you are looking for someone who epitomizes hypocrisy, look no further than TEA Party poster boy Steve Daines.  Montana’s lone Congressman voted against the bill to restore funding for the Meals on Wheels program. It would have provided an added $41 million for elderly nutrition programs, including the Meals on Wheels. He also voted for the Paul Ryan budget that cut (non-defense) spending by $900 billion which hurt “the ability of federally assisted programs such as Meals on Wheels to continue serving populations.”

But its not just cuts Daines’ has tried to pass.  He supported an earlier TEA Party budget that would essentially eliminate the Meals on Wheels program by cutting grants that fund programs like Meals on Wheels. He voted to cut nearly $40 billion from anti-hunger programs that would have left low-income families – mostly children, seniors and veterans – without food.  What a gem.

Unfortunately, a few reporters fell for his publicity stunt.  Perhaps next time they’ll check his voting record before giving him thousands of dollars worth of free air time to pretend to support something he tried to eliminate.  CBS got it right anyway (KECI, KPAX) http://youtu.be/RRK36E46-9M

ABCFox not so much.  KAJ Kalispell perhaps did the worst job, implying that Daines was helping because of cuts to the budget without mentioning that it was Daines himself who made the cuts.