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Latest News in Montana

  • Montana Republican Sends Ominous Warning Letter to Rental Tenants, Mocks Single Mothers

    From April 14, 2014:

    Montana state Rep. Dave Hagstrom (R) sent a pointed warning letter to the low-income tenants of one of his eleven rental properties in South Billings, cryptically telling them they should "accept that not everyone, including yourself, needs to live as long as they currently do, or as ‘comfortably’ as they currently do.”

    Hagstrom also rails against a host of government services, saying the nation's financial problems stem from “free healthcare services at Riverstone Health, more money for food in schools for the kids, more money to help pregnant single moms stop smoking, more money to help elderly people get out of nursing homes and get individualized care in their own homes, etc." He also accuses his tenants, and all Americans, of "living in a bit of a fairytale lifestyle."

    From Montana Street Figher blog:

    If that weren’t enough, the Representative from Billings goes on to mock single mothers.  The government “creates a mindset that if I have kids and their dads are dead-beats, the government should buy my groceries and help me get a job while they provide day-care for my kids and send me to school to educate me so I can get a better job.”

  • Montana GOP legislators promote event labeling conservationists "domestic terrorists"

    From January 3, 2014:

    In Montana, as the Missoula Independent's Jimmy Tobias explains, Tea Party legislators' tri-corner hats are made of tin foil:

    The event, titled "How to Reclaim Montana's Lands," opened with a prayer by former Tea Party state legislator Derek Skees and included speeches by Rep. Nancy Ballance, R-Hamilton, and Sen. Jennifer Fielder, R-Thompson Falls, who also serves as vice chairwoman of the Montana Republican Party. [Defend Rural America founder Kirk] MacKenzie introduced himself as "one of the few good ones" from the San Francisco Bay Area (laughter all around), and then dove into the substance of his speech...

    He believes that rural America is under attack by an insidious cartel of leftists, bureaucrats, bankers and phony scientists who use federal lands and laws like the Endangered Species Act to enact an oppressive agenda. "Total control of public and private property everywhere in the country," he said...

  • Democrats in Montana looking to make gains in 2014

    Democrats are looking to take advantage of the 2014 election to make gains in Big Sky Country. According to an article in The Missoulian, "For the first time in the party’s history, the Montana Democratic Legislative Campaign Committee has hired a full-time, year-round director. In the past, it was a temporary job lasting six to nine months in an election year."

  • Montana Republicans STILL trying to abolish Election-Day registration

    In the space of less than a day, Montana Senate Republicans rushed through yet another attempt to abolish Election Day voter registration.  Senate Bill 405 "would ask voters to eliminate same-day voter registration" and "was heard late Wednesday afternoon but was given very little notice" before a party-line, Thursday vote.  But instead of going to the Governor's desk where past voter suppression bills have met a Democratic veto, SB 405 would instead take the form of a popular referendum if the state House agrees as well.

    This circumvention of normal checks and balances has been a favorite tactic of Montana Republicans, who last session rushed through a series of referenda for the same reason, which "led to a very long ballot in the 2012 election."  Another ballot larded with Tea Party referenda, combined with thousands of voters suddenly finding that their right to correct their registration at the polls has been taken away, would pretty much guarantee snarled polling places as soon as SB 405 went into effect.