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Rehberg Keeps Lying About and Cutting Pell Grants for MT Students

Last week, as Representative Rehberg went on his Talking Points Tour of Montana editorial6437358163_5082a5de9a_m boards, he dropped by the Missoulian and offered this gem:

Among the priorities Rehberg said he’d protect from cuts, Pell grants for college students was the first mentioned. He said he worked to maintain the $5,550 annual top grant, but also put new controls on who could get them.

Working to protect Pell Grants which allow middle and working class Montana students to attend college would be a noble endeavor, but Representative’s rhetoric in the Missoulian has not, unfortunately, been matched by his record.

In just the past two years, Rehberg has done exact opposite of his claim, not only voting against $5,5000 maximum Pell Grants, but repeatedly voting to cut them.

  • On March 25, 2010, Rehberg voted against the Reconciliation Act of 2010, which raised the maximum Pell Grant to $5,550
  • On February 19, 2011, Rehberg  voted for his House Resolution 1, which cut the maximum Pell Grant to $4,705.
  • On April 1, 2011, Represenative Rehberg infamously called Pell Grants the “welfare of the 21st century.”
  • On Aug 22, 2011, Rehberg directly told the people of Montana that he personally cut Pell Grants by almost $1,000/year: He told the Mark Allen Show in Bozeman, “with HR 1, I just attempted to roll it back by $845 and you thought I was destroying the program.”

You just can’t have your TEA and drink it, too, Representative Rehberg. While the reactionary wing of your party wants you to gut vital services, you can’t tell them you’re making cuts while telling the rest of us you’re working to preserve programs.

At least have the decency to tell Montana families the truth when you’re working to make college less affordable for them.

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.

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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