Montana Politics

John Sinrud: Lunatic

In yet another display of the manly, John Wayne lifestyle of Montana Republicans, John Sinrud is crying because the governor is picking on him, even though he’s not:

A state board has ordered Rep. John Sinrud, R-Bozeman, to quit practicing architecture until he obtains an architect’s license or he will face court action.

The Board of Architects unanimously issued a cease and desist order against Sinrud Oct. 15.

It vowed to seek a court injunction against him if it finds he continues to practice architecture without a license.

The board, part of the state Department of Labor and Industry, also said it might ask the county attorney to prosecute him for a misdemeanor.

Sinrud, one of Democratic Gov. Brian Schweitzer’s harshest critics, charged that he is the victim of a political witch hunt that’s depriving him of his right to earn a living.

“It was nothing but political, absolutely and completely political,” Sinrud said Monday. “It’s a political hit because I caused the governor some problems.”

Here’s a revolutionary idea, John. Follow the law, and quit blaming the Governor for your mistakes. The next time you get a traffic ticket, I assume that will be the Governor, too?

If you appreciate an independent voice holding Montana politicians accountable and informing voters, and you can throw a few dollars a month our way, we would certainly appreciate it.


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  • Since this is the same line of work that Rep. Hal Jacobsen does, it makes one wonder if he’ll be investigated too! Is his professional standing going to be called into question?

  • The untold part of the story here is the inquisition-style investigatory powers of these quasi-judicial boards. Their legal staff acts as the prosecutor, the board itself is the judge and jury, and there is little to no allowance for a defense. I had a friend involved in one of these with the board of pharmacy, and he had to plead with the board just to be able to speak in his own defense – the staff attorney tried to cut him off repeatedly. No justice in this process, I tell you.
    On the other hand, karma is at work with Rep. Sinrud. The guy is among the most arrogant, angry, combative and oblivious in the legislature, and that is saying something. Would you hire him to design your house or landscaping? Imagine having a disagreement over the bill with him. He’d probably pull a firearm.

  • Rep. Sinrud spoke on the House floor against HB640, a bill that clarified the term “public building”, introduced by the Montana Chapter of the American Institute of Architects (MTAIA). He indicated that if the bill passed, his business would close. Instead of speaking to the merits or detriment of the bill, he and other republicans attacked the language as defying the party line.

    Architects are interested in protecting the Health Safety and Welfare of the public and believe that the definition of “public building” in the Architect law should be in line with that of the Building Code the State uses in enforcement of building activities.

    It was this House floor discussion that triggered a look into the Sinrud as Architect question. All else flowed from this debate.

    Rep Sinrud has a right to act as he feels necessary during the Legislative Session. His opinions on issues are in liklihood similar to those that Architects hold.

    Making a claim to have an Architecture business in the Legislative Roster when there is no license to back it up was flagrant. The Board of Architects acted properly and issued a cease and desist order.

    Bill Grant

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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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