We’ll see if the Montana media have a spine

It pains me deeply to see a Montana dateline on national and international stories coming out of Trump’s visit to the Electric City — “a freewheeling, raucous rally.” From the New York Times:

As the crowd cheered and pounded on the bleachers during the roughly 70-minute speech at the Four Seasons Arena in Great Falls, Mr. Trump embellished on his favorite exaggerations and falsehoods…

I thought better of Montanans, and I can’t bring myself to call him President or even Mr. Trump, and here’s why:

“We are going to do it gently because we’re the #MeToo generation, so we have to be very careful,” the president said to scattered laughter.

Were there women in the crowd at the Four Seasons Arena chuckling about sexual harassment and assault?

That comment followed the taunting of Sen. Elizabeth “Pocahontas” Warren, and he adamantly refused to apologize for his racial slur.

Any of Montana’s tribal members in the audience applauding that language?

He slammed Sen. Jon Tester. It’s the main reason, he said, that he traveled to Montana on July 5:

“That’s probably why I’m here. I won Montana by so many points, I don’t have to come here.”

He continued his attack on Sen. John McCain and added Pres. George Herbert Walker Bush to the list — both decorated veterans, members of his party, and dying. He then went after NATO, the NFL and the media (“75 percent of those people are downright dishonest”).

However, Russian Pres. Vladimir Putin: “You know what? Putin’s fine. He’s fine.”

He rambled on before eventually returning to the reason for the rally: blasting Tester and boosting Matt Rosendale. Other lesser GOP dignitaries got some podium time but, according to the Great Falls Tribune:

Donald Trump Jr. speaks, Rosendale, Sen. Steve Daines and Rep. Greg Gianforte, who is running for re-election, make brief remarks. Actually, I am surprised as to how short those remarks are.

Surprised? This rally is all about Trump Sr. and petty retaliation for a perceived slight from Democratic incumbent Tester. It was a gratuitous nod to Montana Republicans.

The Tribune columnist continues:

But I think everyone will say it was just one heck of a day for Great Falls.

No, it was a sad day for Great Falls, and Montana. Trump’s speech should elicit a rebuke from every opinion writer in the state.

Granted, protesters from around Big Sky Country traveled to North Central Montana on the day after the Fourth of July — I heard there were a few hundred — to make their presence known. Bless their hearts.

But it’s past time for the media to chime in. Every opinion leader, editorial writer and columnist from every leading news outlet in the state needs to expose this xenophobic, misogynistic, racist charlatan for what he is. And every sycophant candidate hanging on the coattails of this man-child needs to be called out.


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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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