Tuesday tidbits: guns, guns and some other stuff

Summer special election

As Trump’s cabinet confirmations drag on, the date of Montana’s special election to replace Rep. Ryan Zinke is pushed further and further into June. MTN’s Mike Dennison has an update. This must be driving the nominating convention organizers crazy. I know that as a delegate to the Democratic Convention, I’d appreciate a firm date. On the plus side, it will give candidates a better chance to get their name out. On the minus side, I fear the deeper into summer the election is held, the lower the turnout.

Teachers packing heat

The absurdly titled “The Montana School Safety Act” allows any school district employee — teacher, principal, janitor — to carry a concealed weapon in the classroom. I have five grandchildren in Montana public schools, and of course, I worry about their safety. But I’m way more worried about an accidental discharge than some crazed individual shooting up a classroom. It’s HB-385, sponsored by Seth Berglee, R-Joliet. I’m guessing Seth consulted with the NRA on this bill, not anyone representing the education community. Call your representative in the legislature and urge them to vote ‘no’ on this bill. The Capitol switchboard is 406-444-4800.

In other gun news

The Montana House voted 53-47 for a bill allowing state legislators to carry concealed weapons in the Capitol. I wonder which legislator, page or staff member gets to take the first round from an accidentally discharged firearm? Maybe Rep. Randy Brodehl, R-Kalispell, the sponsor of this bill? 

Daines gets back to me

“Over the past several years, I have heard from countless Montanans about how Obamacare has hurt them,” writes Daines, which is interesting because I wrote him to say that Obamacare had been a boon to my family. “I will be fighting … to protect patients with preexisting conditions, and allow young adults to stay on their parents’ coverage until they turn 26.” That’s great, Senator, did you come up with that idea all by yourself? He says he has “provisions in a replacement plan that will provide access to affordable insurance.” And what might those provisions be? He’ll get to that later. He closes with, “I look forward to hearing from you again in the future.” No, Steve, I don’t really think you do.

A pat on our collective backs

Most of the patting should be directed at Don Pogreba. This very site crossed the one-million-views mark last week; 1,010,769 as of 3:45 p.m. today. Don got this particular site off the ground in October, 2012. In 2017, it’s averaging 1245 views a day. So kudos to Don and the many contributors, past and present, who have kept it informative and lively, and thanks to the commenters, well, most of them, who have contributed to the conversation. Don, anything to add?




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About the author

Pete Talbot

'Papa’ Pete Talbot is first and foremost a grandfather to five wonderful grandchildren. Like many Montanans, he has held numerous jobs over the years: film and video producer, a partner in a marketing and advertising firm, a builder and a property manager. He’s served on local and statewide Democratic Party boards. Pete has also been blogging at various sites for over a decade. Ping-pong and skiing are his favorite diversions. He enjoys bourbon.

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