Montana Politics

Developer Denny #MansionRanchin’

Whenever I see Rep. Developer Denny strutting around in a cowboy hat and matching boots, I get somewhat ill.  It’s like watching that guy that comes up from California for a couple of weeks, hangs out on a Dude Ranch, and spends a few thousand dollars to look like a “real ol’ authentic-like cowboy.”

Rehberg mimics the “cowboy” and it would be funny, if it weren’t so painful to watch.

For ten-plus years, Rep. Rehberg has successfully gotten away with “gee whiz, I’m a real life rancher.”  However, since announcing his bid to unseat Sen. Tester, the blinders are coming off.  First, you have the gaffe from last year where Rehberg claimed to be “cash poor” and “struggling like everyone else.”  He’s “struggling,” but also claims to own the Rims surrounding Billings.

What’s on the Rims?  A ranch full of cattle? Goats? Sheep?

Nope.  Rehberg Ranch is full of subdivisions and mini-mansions.  Check it out yourself:

Don’t get me wrong.  There is nothing wrong with development.  There is nothing wrong with making money.  There is nothing wrong doing what you want with your land (as long as it doesn’t harm others).

What’s wrong is when you do this – you pretend to be something you’re not in order to do what you think will earn you votes.:

Rehberg’s trying desperately to make himself out to be a real rancher, when what he really is is a successful developer.  Rehberg’s housing developments are so important to Rehberg that he even sued the Billings Fire Department over a brush fire on his property.

Is Rehberg  a rancher?  Maybe the lack of cattle in the corral behind Rehberg in this political ad says it all:

Tester’s campaign has wasted little time pointing out that Denny isn’t much of a rancher.  For example,

Rehberg, Tester pointed out during a debate today in Big Sky, isn’t a rancher.

“Building houses, and mansion ranchin’ ain’t ranchin,” Tester said.

In fact, according to public records, Rehberg hasn’t bought, sold or registered any livestock for at least 12 years. [Department of Livestock, inspection and sale records, accessed 7/27/11]

Rehberg, it turns out, gave up cattle ranching and goat ranching because—according to his own campaign manager—Rehberg “couldn’t manage the herd and going back and forth between Montana and D.C.” [Esquire, 11/4/2011]

Tester’s campaign extensively debunks the notion that Rehberg  is some kind of authentic rancher versus a land developer.

Again, there is nothing wrong with building houses or developing land.  Both are respectable ways to make a living and if that’s what you do, then just say it.

Don’t be phony.  Don’t be something you’re not.  We Montanans are smarter than you think, Mr. Rehberg.

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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  • Sorry to interfere with your daily anti-Denny nonsense, but here is something critically important as Montana homes go up in smoke: www(dot)

    Date: 6/29/12
    Evergreen International Aviation Statement Concerning the Supertanker
    We felt compelled to release this statement due to the overwhelming amount of calls we have
    received concerning the availability of the Evergreen Supertanker. We at Evergreen are saddened
    by the fire devastation now taking place in many Western US states. For over 60 years, we have
    supported the US Forest Service in its important mission to battle and control fires, and it is our
    desire to continue this rich history of service. While our helicopters continue to work fires for the
    State of Alaska under State contracts, unfortunately, our Boeing 747 Supertanker Very Large Air
    Tanker (VLAT) aircraft awaits activation with the US Forest Service.
    We have never been told why we have not been activated by the US Forest Service, so we can
    only speculate as to why we face this outcome:
    1. We were offered a Call-When-Needed (CWN) contract a few years ago by the US Forest
    Service (proving our technical viability), but we were never called into action resulting in
    a multi-million dollar loss to our company as we were required to maintain and have
    flight crew available should we be called. The only contract that will sustain a VLAT
    program is an Exclusive-Use contract, which provides an income stream to sustain the
    program even if the asset is not utilized. We invested over $50M to develop this asset in
    the firm belief that we could better control fires as we proved in Israel and Mexico under
    CWN contracts that we could afford to offer at the time.
    2. There have been recent changes to the US Forest Service procurement policies. Today,
    only small businesses are eligible for contract awards concerning air tanker assets;
    Evergreen is not a small business and, therefore, is excluded from consideration for any
    3. The US Forest Service’s specification for Next Generation Air Tanker aircraft limits tank
    size to 5,000 gallons. The Supertanker’s tanks hold about 20,000 gallons, which is
    considered outside the USFS specification. The USFS just awarded contracts to four
    small businesses with aircraft equipped with these smaller tanks, and excluded the
    Evergreen Supertanker. Since World War II, tank capacities have been in the 3,000 to
    5,000 gallon range, yet we continue to face the growing threat from mega fires today. We
    believe the Supertanker represents an overwhelming response to this growing threat.
    Please contact your state representatives in Washington DC to demand an examination of their
    current procurement policies concerning VLAT aircraft. The US Forest Service says it best:
    “Only YOU can prevent wildfires.”
    Evergreen International Aviation, Inc. Tel: 503.472.9361\

    Please encourage Rehberg, Baucus, and Tester to get this situation fixed. I’m trying again to comment. First try was unsuccessful. Replace (dot) with a .

    • I guess my question to you, Craig, would be why are you posting this here? The reasons for the Forest Service Specifications exist – probably for a reason. Moreover, if you are posting this as some kind of request for for our support for this cause, I can tell you up front that I cannot and will not support this company or it’s endevour. The message says it all. This company developed an asset that they wanted the Forest Service to use. They knew going into it what the Forest Service Requirements were but they still developed something OUTSIDE those requirements. Further, they are butthurt that the Forest Service did not just roll over when they DEMANDED that their service be used.

      You certainly pick some interesting causes, Craig…

          • We don’t COTTON to the gay crowd round these parts, pardner! Even IFN’ it’s a woman!

        • Craig, this has nothing to do with politics and EVERYTHING to do with a company wanting to cash in big with current emergency. I am sorry you just can’t see that. I am actually aware of the plane you are talking about. Remember who I am married to? This is not a political argument, it is one of a company trying to hold the people risking their lives fighting fires somehow responcible for the company’s bottom line.

          • BS. Get the asset’s to do the job. Don’t let your anti-business attitude cloud your judgment. The idle 747 and other idle DC-10 tankers are unacceptable to doing “everything possible” to attack the fires.

            • Craig, once again, you have no idea what you are talking about. It has nothing to do with “anti-business” and everything to do with the rules that have been established by congress on what the Forest Service can and can’t do. What they WON’T do (because the rules specifically say they can’t) is allow any company to profiteer on an emergency.

              If you are so damn concerned, then write you Congress Critters and tell them in no uncertain terms that their drawdown of the Forest Service and BLM budget is unacceptable. Maybe then the Forest Service can look at the cashcow you want them to look at.

            • You’re certainly an expert in persuasion, Craig. Look how effective you’ve been here. Perhaps you should write our members of Congress using your finely developed persuasive skills.

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