For his entire career he took and he took from insurance and healthcare companies.
When the time came to provide Americans with health insurance, Baucus threw them under the bus in favor of his big donors.
The single-payer option was removed from the table and that eventually led us to what we have now, an idea spawned by the right-leaning Heritage Center: Obamacare.
Because Obamacare was so monumentally unpopular, Baucus lost his job and had to flee to China.
That opened his seat, which led to Montana’s good ol’ boys network choosing an equally incompetent man to replace Baucus, which in turn led to Steve Daines winning that 100-year seat.
On top of this, one of Baucus’ cronies was chosen as a candidate for the U.S. House shortly after Baucus’ banishment, and he lost terribly.
The man he lost to is now going to Washington to serve under Trump.
Baucus’ banishment didn’t fix things, however.
Instead Obamacare continued to drive up insurance costs for tens of millions of Americans while giving a few million people free healthcare.
This led to anger and resentment, and coupled with one of the most incompetent Democratic presidential candidates in generations, Trump stormed into the White House.
Now Montana Republicans are trying to figure out who to replace Trump’s handpicked Montanan with.
The good ol’ boys network of Democrats actually wants to replace him with Baucus’ son.
No, you just can’t fix stupid.
You can only show it the door and hope it never comes back.
But we’re not talking about Democrats today, just the situation they created.
Will Montana Republicans capitalize on it, keeping the seat they’ve had for more than 20 years?
Or will Democrats somehow get over their own trip-ups to actually help the state instead of helping themselves?
Right now we have 5 Republicans going for Zinke’s seat.
Who’s the most prominent?
That’s hard to say.
If you want to go by Facebook, like we did when we looked at the Dems yesterday, then you’ll get the following results:
- Daniel Zolnikov: This soon-to-be 30-year-old has a Wikipedia page, more than 6,000 followers on Twitter, and more than 4,300 likes on Facebook. He also has a website.
- Scott Sales: This 56-year-old doesn’t have a social media presence. There is a Wikipedia page for him, however.
- Ed Buttrey: This 51-year-old just has a personal Facebook page, one that hasn’t been updated since 2014.
- Eugene Graf IV: This builder from Bozeman has a personal Facebook page and little else. I can’t even find the most basic of biographies to determine his age.
- Gary Carlson: Gary Carlson is 74-years-old and has the most experience running for the U.S. House, having done so in 1984. He lost to Pat Williams 66% to 32%, with Libertarian Royer Warren taking about 2% that year. Carlson served in President Reagan’s Department of Defense, is active in the Ravalli County GOP, and ran for Montana GOP chair in 2013. Media Trackers has the most info on him.
- Judge Russell Fagg: This candidate took himself out of the running, saying it wouldn’t be appropriate for him to campaign for one branch of government while serving in another.
So those are our candidates…so far.
The big question continues to be what Gianforte will do.
Another one is who the GOP delegates are.
I have no idea on either of those.
Many people don’t. Many are wondering. And they’re waiting.
A big problem for our legislative Republicans is that they hate old people.
How are you going to win a special election in an aging state like Montana when it’s clear you hate old people?
Oh, and I’m sorry…but is cutting $93 million out of the Department of Public Health and Human Services budget not hating old people?
$52 million is the exact number that will be cut from the senior and long-term care budget.
These are old people that have “spent their assets down to $2,000, or those who are physically disabled.”
So not only do our GOP legislators hate old people, they hate old cripples even more.
That’s a helluva platform to run on.
I can’t wait until our Democrat points that out in TV ads, social media posts, newspaper articles, and mailers.
- “Daniel Zolnikov hates old people and while I don't want to say he wants them to die in the street, he certainly doesn't care if they do or not.”
- “Scott Sales would rather cut taxes for rich people than help 3rd- and 4th-generation Montanans that are dying in nursing homes.”
- “Ed Buttrey doesn’t think taking care of Montana seniors is important. He thinks stealing their money and giving it to the rich is, however.”
Oh, I can’t wait until we see those ads.
In fact, I decided to make up a few models of what they might look like:
I love that most of the GOP candidates are legislators and that you can use their cruddy records against them.
You can also use their colleagues’ records and dialogue against them as well, using it to paint them the same way, as someone that doesn’t care about old people, kids, animals, working people, poor people, and just about anyone else that’s not rich or from an out-of-state corporation.
So…who’ll be running ads like this?
I’m pretty sure it won’t be Rob Quist.
He’s taking the ‘nice guy approach’ to this campaign, and that’s a smart move.
He hasn’t attacked anyone, he hasn’t made any enemies, and there’s nothing people can really say against him.
Why change that?
Curtis, however…well, she might want to get a bit more physical.
Or is this not going to be a campaign where we pummel and beat and knock our opponent senseless?
Because if it’s not then we won’t need ads like this, we’ll just need to focus on the issues and what’s ailing America and how Montana can come out better than she is now.
I’d much rather see a knock-down, drag-out fight that leaves both candidates bruised and bloodied and Montanans with a bit more real dialogue about our problems.
Because I’m sorry, when you’ve got things like legal marijuana and ending our overseas wars staring you right in the face as obvious solutions for the state’s and the feds’ monetary woes, you should talk about them.
It’s a helluva better approach than signaling that you’ll cut funding for old people living in homes, you know…the kind of people that are so senile with dementia that they’re drooling on themselves, pissing themselves, and wondering why they still don’t have the car keys.
We should be looking out for those people.
Instead Montana Republicans have made it perfectly clear that those people aren’t important.
If Democrats don’t make that an issue in this special election campaign then I have to wonder if they have any sense at all.
- Where’s the hunger to win?
- Where’s the passion to better people’s lives?
- Where’s the courage to say what needs to be said?
It’s not on the GOP side of this race, that’s obvious.
And that’s why they have a damn good chance of losing their 20-year seat.
I hope they do.