“Two former bitter political rivals have joined a common cause: asking the Montana Board of Pardons and Parole to commute Barry Beach’s 100-year prison sentence and parole him so he can go back to living his life in Billings.” That’s the opening sentence in a very interesting report from The Great Falls Tribune’s John Adams.
Democratic Sen. Jon Tester and former Republican Sen. Conrad Burns are among the more than 200 people who wrote letters to the board urging the seven-member panel to free Beach, who has served more than 30 years behind bars for a crime he says he didn’t commit.
Beach was convicted in 1983 of murdering high school classmate Kim Nees in 1979.
Meanwhile, Sen. Jon Tester (D-MT) is breaking his silence on Syria. While Congressman Steve Daines (R-MT) was the only member of the Congressional delegation to speak out against an attack in Syria, Tester now says an attack would make the situation in Syria worse, as KGVO radio’s Jon King reports:
“The use of chemical weapons is deplorable,” Tester said. “After weighing the fact, and listening to Montanans, I’m convinced a military strike at this time will only make the situation worse. The best solution here is to keep putting international pressure on Syria to give up its chemical weapons.”
Publicly and privately, an increasing number of Democrats are signaling they won’t go along with the resolution, at least not right now. While just six Senate Democrats have publicly announced their opposition, that number could increase dramatically in coming days, Democratic sources say.
Yet on Monday, six senators — Republicans Lamar Alexander (Tenn.), Johnny Isakson (Ga.), Mike Enzi (Wyo.), Roger Wicker (Miss.) and Roy Blunt (Mo.), as well as Democrat Heidi Heitkamp (N.D.) — all came out against the Syria resolution, while Democrats Barbara Mikulski (Md.) and Martin Heinrich (N.M.) announced they’d back it.
Monday, September 16, 2013 8:54 PM
Today Montanans read in their newspapers our Governor, Steve Bullock, considered it inappropriate to offer an opinion in regard to the Barry Beach case.
Montanans already know his position!
As Attorney General he appealed the carefully considered decision by an honorable judge that, because of recent new evidence bearing on the case, Barry Beach deserved a new trial.
Of course the Montana Supreme Court by a split vote upheld this ridiculous appeal. What a surprise!
So, once again, there is yet another question about the Barry Beach case.
Was the new trial denied because Montana elitists were certain a new trial would have found Beach innocent, and further, were they fearful his initial conviction might have been declared wrongful?
That could be very ugly…a wrongful conviction for which an innocent man has already served over 30 years in prison!
And now, the trial prosecutor, ex-governor Marc Racicot, is thinking of running for the United States Senate.
Ah, the embarrassment, the shame, the out-of-this-freaking-world potential law suit!
With the world watching it is no wonder the governor wants to play the consummate politician and not voice an opinion!
We understand perfectly….hell, no one wants to be on the wrong side of history!