Montana Politics

Montana Blog Roundup 26 June 2011

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Following the end of the Legislature and a bit of a collective lull in the Montana blogging community, I temporarily stepped away from the Montana Blog Roundup, but we’re back! Below are some of the most interesting posts of the past week on Montana’s blogs.

MT Cowgirl takes a look at Rick Hill’s high disapproval numbers and how that will benefit Democratic candidates for governor. I plan to do a more extensive look at the GOP candidates soon, but this post makes the case that Hill, though the presumptive nominee, may have a more difficult road than he and his staff may have imagined. It’s almost certain that a fair amount of that disapproval comes from conservatives who aren’t sold on Hill’s claim to be a member of the “Tea Party before the Tea Party was cool.” Uh, cool?

It’s becoming increasingly apparent that the Legislature didn’t give much thought about the practical results or even the legality of the law they passed to regulate medical marijuana, and jhwygirl makes that clear in this post.

Loki at 2 Helena Handbaskets also laments Lee Enterprise’s decision to eliminate the editor position at the Independent Record, but manages to entirely mischaracterize the decision. To suggest that this decision was to move the paper back to the left is wrong on too many levels to describe.

The Western World takes a look at the polling in the Tester-Rehberg contest, arguing that both candidates have to be concerned. In particular, he hits on the dilemma that Denny Rehberg is going to face: “Rehberg, on the other hand, aligned himself to the far right with the Tea Party.  In some GOP races candidates do this to win the primary, so we may see Rehberg try to become more “independent” after the primary or when he feels it’s too late for some other right-leaning candidate to come on board to challenge him.”

Some of that concern might be reflected on a relatively new site (Rehberg the Rino) whose author seems to believe that Rehberg is not conservative enough. It’s worth visiting this story for the image alone.

Finally, Rob wrote about the confluence of racism and populism in the Tea Party movement, along with the growing extremism in Montana. Given the re-emergence of organizations like the John Birch Society in Montana to compliment the occasional lone wolf militia member, it’s worth paying more attention to.

About the author

Don Pogreba

Don Pogreba is a eighteen-year teacher of English, former debate coach, and loyal, if often sad, fan of the San Diego Padres and Portland Timbers. He spends far too many hours of his life working at school and on his small business, Big Sky Debate.

His work has appeared in Politico and Rewire.

In the past few years, travel has become a priority, whether it's a road trip to some little town in Montana or a museum of culture in Ísafjörður, Iceland.

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