Matt Rosendale Just Can’t Tell the Truth

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Maryland’s Matt Rosendale is off to a stirring start in his campaign for the U.S. Senate. After a bizarre P.R. stunt where he posed as a delivery man in the U.S. Senate, he followed up by arguing for an immediate repeal of the Affordable Care Act, seemingly unconcerned by the 70,000 Montanans who would have lost coverage.

It turns out he’s also unconcerned with the truth, as he opened his campaign by lying to Voices of Montana that Jon Tester supports a national gun registry. From Politifact today:

Rosendale said Tester “believes that we should have a national registration so that the people of Montana should have to ask permission before they purchase a gun, ask permission from the federal government.”

Tester’s record shows opposition to a federal list of lawfully-owned guns and gun owners. To claim he supports this is absurd.

We rate this Pants on Fire.

It gets better:

“This simply has involved changing the criteria for passing a background check. It is nothing like a registry,” Hemenway said. “He doesn’t seem to understand what a registry is.”

So Rosendale’s central claim is flat wrong — but he didn’t stop there. Rosendale said the registry Tester allegedly supports would require Montanans to “ask permission from the federal government” before they purchase a gun.

Because the alleged gun registry proposal is a fiction, it can have no policy implications. So this extra bit only serves to enhance the claim’s absurdity.

Given his extremist views, penchant for creating ads in which he shoots down federal property, and a worldview perhaps more suited to south of Mason-Dixon line, Rosendale is likely to do a lot of this kind of campaigning. One hopes that the press whose job it is to hold politicians accountable here in Montana will keep an eye on Mr. Rosendale and his campaign.

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About the author

Don Pogreba

Don Pogreba is an 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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