US House Race Taking Shape, Rosendale’s Official

Aaron Flint posted on October 17, 2013 16:30 :: 1139 Views

The US House race is starting to take shape.  No major surprises in Montana, but State Sen. Matt Rosendale (R-Glendive) has now made it official, while former State Sen. Ryan Zinke (R-Whitefish) schedules a “special announcement.”  Meanwhile, former Congressman Denny Rehberg (R-MT) joins the former Ambassador to Bahrain as he gets picked up by a DC lobbying firm. 

From the AP:

Republican state legislator Matt Rosendale said Tuesday that his campaign for the U.S. House will champion conservative ideals in the “war going on for the heart and soul of our country.”

The Glendive rancher, a small businessman who moved to Montana from Maryland a decade ago, said he thinks House Republicans must keep forcing the issue in the argument over the debt ceiling in order to get rid of the federal health care law and reduce spending.

“Congress needs a spine. They need to stand up and address these issues,” Rosendale said in an interview. “I think that I agree with the bulk of the House Republicans. They are trying to defund Obamacare to continue to fund the balance of government, and I don’t think that is unreasonable.”

Meanwhile, it looks like former State Senator Ryan Zinke (R-Whitefish), who served as a Commander at SEAL Team 6, is ready to announce his run for the US House as well. 

Here’s the details from his spokesman via email:

WHAT: Ryan Zinke will host an announcement event to speak about his vision for the future of Montana and the United States.
WHEN: Monday, October 21, 2013
Program begins at 11:00am
WHERE: Crowne Plaza Hotel
Conference Room 1 (3rd Floor)
27 N 27th Street, Billings, MT
LIVE WEBSTREAM: This event will be streamed live online at beginning at 11:00am.  See advertisement link under “Electronic Files”

On the Democratic side of the potential ticket, a career staffer to Sen. Max Baucus (D-MT), who authored Obamacare, won’t detail what changes need to be made to Obamacare, per The Bozeman Daily Chronicle.

The Billings native said in an interview before the event that he wants to help get Congress functioning again so routine matters like the farm and other infrastructure bills can move forward. He will be campaigning against the current dysfunction in Washington, D.C., with a message of “getting back to basics.” “Congress is not working for Montana and working families, and it shows in what is going on today,” Lewis said of the government shutdown. “I am interested in working together for solutions.” Lewis promised a pragmatic approach to governing and generally steered clear of specifics on the issues. He also said he would hold town halls around the state. Like Montana’s current delegation, Lewis said he supports the Keystone XL pipeline running from Canada through the state that has yet to be approved by the Obama administration. And he backs the bulk of the health care law written by his old boss, although he said he wants some changes. He didn’t specify what those changes would be, but he said the Republican effort to repeal the law during shutdown negotiations was not practical. “No piece of legislation that passes is perfect. Is the health care law perfect? No. Does it need changes? Yes,” Lewis said. “But it is not an option to go back to what we had before.” Lewis said meeting with local government leaders in all the state’s counties indicated that voters want pragmatic solutions over grandstanding. He expects a promise to deliver those results will be a winning formula for a seat Democrats last held when U.S. Rep. Pat Williams was in office in 1997.

Roll Call: Former Congressman Rehberg Picked Up by Lobby Firm

Mercury Public Affairs, founded in 1999, has added an impressive stable of public figures in the past several months, including J. Adam Ereli, the former ambassador to Bahrain; Michael Soliman, the former state director for Sen. Robert Menendez, D–N.J.; and former Rep. Denny Rehberg, R-Mont.

The addition of Ereli, a seasoned foreign service officer, represents a foray into international issues for the firm, which has traditionally focused domestically.

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