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2020 Governor Featured Greg Gianforte Montana Politics

Greg Gianforte Votes Against Measure He Claims Will Repair Malmstrom Runway and Protect the Base’s Future

Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

Why did Greg Gianforte vote against a measure he claimed would begin”the process of including Malmstrom in future Air Force basing decisions to host aircraft, potentially increasing the number of men and women serving there”?

Because if you take Gianforte at his word, that’s exactly what he did last week.

In a story that was little more than a glorified press release sent to the Great Falls Tribune, Gianforte got headlines for claiming that he had inserted language in the National Defense Authorization Act that would make repairing the Malmstrom runway a higher priority than building a new one somewhere else.

And then Gianforte turned around and voted against the NDAA.

It’s classic Gianforte. Instead of the people of Montana, he puts his party in D.C. first. He’s repeatedly conned the Montana press into running stories about measures he’s supported, knowing perhaps that they will not follow up and note that he voted against actually funding the measure in question.

I don’t actually believe Gianforte’s press release. The language it discusses is far from a guarantee of a renewed Malmstrom mission and Gianforte’s name does not appear on the list of House Amendments to the NDAA, but if the Great Falls Tribune took him at his word that he inserted critical language for the community into the bill, shouldn’t it demand that he explain why he voted against it?

And if I were running a campaign against Mr. Gianforte next year, I’d certainly think using his own words and votes against him might be a pretty effective campaign strategy. Something to think about, Mr. Fox.

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.

11 Comments

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    • You can see that is the roll call vote for 2018, right?

      Gianforte voted against the 2019 NDAA that included the language he claims to have added.

      Comment. No correction.

      • 2019 NDAA, Don your right and now for the rest of the story.

        The House on Friday approved its defense authorization bill after adopting a slew of progressive amendments that helped Democrats earn votes from the party’s more dovish members in the face of Republican opposition.

        The final vote on the fiscal 2020 bill was 220-197. No Republicans supported the typically bipartisan measure that traditionally has earned more than 300 of the 435 available House votes.

        Just before passing the bill, the House defeated, 204-212, a Republican motion to recommit that would have increased the military pay raise and poured additional funds into military maintenance accounts.

        Republicans opposed the underlying bill before it reached the floor because it includes a prohibition on deploying lower-yield nuclear weapons, a ban on sending new prisoners to the Guantanamo Bay detention center and restrictions on how the Pentagon can transfer funds between its accounts. They also said its $733 billion in authorized spending, a full $17 billion less than Republicans desired, wasn’t enough.

        Before the final vote, both sides peppered the Capitol with partisan quips.

        “This bill is filled with poison pills,” Republican Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy of California said on the floor, citing the legislation’s authorized spending level, Guantanamo provisions and measures that would limit the Defense Department’s activities on the U.S.-Mexico border. “This bill will not make America safe.”

        • It’s “you’re.”

          And given that I linked to this very article, I’m certainly not hiding anything. Republicans chose to abandon a bill that is traditionally bipartisan because they are petulant children.

          And Gianforte, despite knowing he was going to vote AGAINST the measure, claimed credit for it helping Malmstrom. That’s some disingenuous stuff there.

          • Bill says (I should say, he quotes, since that’s not Bill’s writing style) “Republicans opposed the underlying bill before it reached the floor because it includes a prohibition on deploying lower-yield nuclear weapons, a ban on sending new prisoners to the Guantanamo Bay detention center and restrictions on how the Pentagon can transfer funds between its accounts. They also said its $733 billion in authorized spending, a full $17 billion less than Republicans desired, wasn’t enough.”

            So, Republicans want more nukes (albeit “lower yield”), more prisoners at Gitmo, and $733 billion isn’t a big enough military budget (yet bigger the next seven nations’ defense budgets combined).

            Gianforte is a tool.

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