The Montana GOP front group Go Green Montana is buying social media to the tune of $27,090, so far, to promote U.S. Senate candidate Wendie Fredrickson and other supposed Green Party candidates.
Go Green Montana has a mail box at the UPS store on the corner of Broadway and Orange Streets in Missoula. It’s listed as a SuperPAC with the FEC and the treasurer is William Murray with the same address as the P.O. Box. The financial institution handling the money, however, is the Bank of America at 600 Washington St. in Alexandria, Virginia.
To date, there is no record of who’s funding the campaign and because Go Green Montana is a dark money group, we may never know who’s really behind it.
What we do know is that the Montana Republican Party funded the petition drive to get the Green Party on the 2020 ballot.
And now, the marketing group Arena, out of Salt Lake City, is purchasing social media ads, particularly on Facebook. (Here’s a link to Go Green Montana’s own Facebook page. Read the comments that haven’t been scrubbed for a nightmarish peek into some of the electorate’s beliefs.)
Arena is an agency that produces direct mail and digital media campaigns for conservative candidates and causes. One of its clients is Sen. Steve Daines, who’s up for re-election in 2020.
If I was a faster writer, this post would have been published before Mike Dennison’s story. Alas, he did a fine job covering much of the same material you see here. He has some additional information, too.
The takeaway from this post and Dennison’s piece should be obvious: Green Party candidates in this election are anything but Green. There is one exception and that’s Dennis Daneke, who is running for the U.S. Senate in the primary election against Wendie Fredrickson. Fredrickson has some history with Gov. Steve Bullock’s administration and may have an ax to grind. She’s also the candidate being promoted on various social media sites by Go Green Montana.
Daneke, on the other hand, has real environmental credentials. He taught sustainability classes at Missoula College until his recent retirement. He says he’ll withdraw from the race if he prevails in the June 2 primary contest.
But some of the other candidates who filed as Greens are, for example, John Gibney for the U.S House and Gary Marbut for the state house in District 47. These two are about as Green as a coal company CEO.
The Missoulian posed three questions to Marbut during its pre-election coverage of regional races. One was on funding higher education, one on affordable housing and one on public lands. Here’s how Marbut answered the first two: “This sounds like trolling to raise taxes. I do not support increased taxation.” On public lands, he says he’d shift the management burden from the federal level to the state.
That’s some real Go Green Montana policy going on there.