Representative Rehberg’s Latest Grandstanding Will Hurt Montanans, Says Rehberg

It makes sense that Representative Rehberg hasn’t had the time to pass anyrehberg meaningful legislation while he’s been in Congress—he’s simply too busy jumping on whatever the latest ideological stunt the brain trust at the Republican Party dreams up happens to be. The latest (albeit recycled from 2008)? Rehberg’s decided not to seek earmarks for Montana next year:

Honoring a House Republican ban on funding requests for pet projects, Rep. Denny Rehberg has notified Montanans that he will not seek earmarks this year.

For the moment, let’s ignore that Rehberg has been running around the state for the past year, taking credit for earmarks he voted against. Let’s ignore the fact that earmark reform is just political grandstanding, without real impact on the budget. What concerns me is that if Rehberg doesn’t request earmarks, Montanans will pay for pet projects in other states.

Who says so? Representative Rehberg:

The fact is not one of my earmarks added a single dollar to these spending bills that wouldn’t have otherwise been spent in states like California.”

No, really. Consider what his staff told the Flathead Beacon:

“It’s easy to think that 323 paved itself or that water projects spring up naturally on the Hi-line when you’re heckling from the sidelines,” Tyler Matthews, Rehberg’s campaign manager, said. “But the folks who roll up their sleeves to work in the trenches with Denny know what he’s done for Montana.

It seems that Representative Rehberg would rather play political games than work to fund programs he has called essential, while letting Montanans pick up the tab for projects in other states.

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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About the author

Don Pogreba

Don Pogreba has been writing about Montana politics since 2005 and teaching high school English since 2000. He's a 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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  • It seems like this could be evidence that he has no goals for his time in Congress – no agenda, nothing he's trying to accomplish (other than promoting himself). This could explain why he just jumps on every Republican press template but has no policy output.

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