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Gianforte already asking for money (as if he needs it)

Greg Gianforte must figure he’ll be the Republican nominee to fill Ryan Zinke’s seat. I received an email request today asking for a donation:

Bottom line: I will need your support to ensure I have the necessary resources to fight back and defeat my liberal Democrat opponent.

He’s cutting straight to the special election with no mention of the nominating convention to be held early next month. I’d be a little miffed at Gianforte’s dismissal of the process if I was one of the other Republican candidates.

Now I’m sure the Democratic candidates wouldn’t turn down a contribution but they’re not so cocky as to say they are the presumptive nominee. Rob Quist is the only candidate I can find (besides Gianforte) who has website and it does have a donation button. The others just have Facebook pages. I have received informative emails from just about all the Democratic candidates but no direct asks. They’re waiting for the nomination process to play out.

Let’s parse some of Gianforte’s email to me:

I wanted you to be among the first to hear the news: I will be entering the upcoming Special Election to replace my good friend, Congressman Ryan Zinke. (Emphasis his.)

Well, this is hardly news. It has been in the press for about a month.

That is why, after much prayer and thought, I have decided to step in to fill these large shoes and continue Ryan’s legacy of Republican values for our great state. (Emphasis and italics his.)

God has spoken and he wants Greg. Also, let’s hope Gianforte’s legacy includes actual voting.

Let me make this abundantly clear: this race will be ground zero and the first official battle waged by the Democrats to stop the Republican/Trump agenda.

On this, Greg and I are in complete agreement.

Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama and their liberal allies will most certainly view this special election as their “phoenix rising from the ashes” moment. Expect millions upon millions of dollars to be poured into our state by the Democrats and their cadre of lobbyists, special interests and political action committees.

In short, the Obama Political Machine and outside special interest group will be unleashed with an unseen fury. They will do whatever it takes to defeat another candidate that’s determined to “drain the swamp.”

Ahh, if only it were true. Somehow I don’t see Hillary or Barack funneling “millions upon millions of dollars” into this race. There may be some political action committees spending money but I doubt a “cadre of lobbyists (and) special interests” will be dumping a bunch of cash into Montana, at least not on the Democratic side. I am glad to see that Greg will continue to “drain the swamp,” although I’m not sure how many billionaires, Goldman Sachs and Exxon executives are left to fill cabinet positions.

We only have a very short amount of time to build our grassroots army that will represent what is truly good for Montana and not for liberal special interest groups and the DC elite.

The grassroots campaign will be for whomever the Democratic nominee is. There will be many small donations from within and from outside the state. Here’s another email I received today from a faithful reader, which was news to me:

I have been getting requests from women’s march people across the country. They want Montana Democrats to let them know to whom and where to send a ten dollar donation to get a Democrat from Montana in Congress. We will have many dollars flowing to campaign coffers as soon as we have one person selected to run.

Apparently, word is getting out. FiveThirtyEight had this to say (although I’d disagree with the last line in the post, “Montana is really red, after all.” I’d say more mauve in color):

You don’t have to wait until November of 2018 to begin to tip the House. Five special elections for the House will take place over the next few months: Georgia’s 6th congressional district, Kansas’s 4th, Montana’s At-large, South Carolina’s 5th, and California’s 34th. These elections are “special” because they occur outside the normal two-year November House election cycle, to fill a vacant seat. They’re also a measure of the nation’s political mood and how voters are responding to President Trump.

The resistance is out there and folks are willing to make small, personal donations to the Democratic candidate in our special election — an election that is receiving more-and-more national attention.

You can count on Gianforte’s campaign being big bucks, much of the money coming from the candidate himself. It will be complete with negative cookie-cutter TV spots and mailings coming from Beltway Republican consultants and dark money interests. It won’t be pretty.

(UPDATE: please see the first two comments, below, for new information. Thanks, guys.



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

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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