Political Trough: Knudsen- The End Doesn’t Justify the Means

Dr. Franklin Graham, the son of Evangelist Billy Graham and CEO of Samaritan’s Purse, speaks in Montana.  Speaker of the Montana House Austin Knudsen (R-Culbertson) responds to the moderate Republican legislators who teamed up with Democrats in order to sidestep the rules and pass Obamacare Medicaid expansion.  Happy tax day in Billings, Montana as a coal fired power plant is shut down due to Obama regulations backed by Sen. Jon Tester (D-MT).  A former spokesman to Gov. Marc Racicot (R-MT) makes the list of the top influential journalists in the country.  Tester’s personal assistant is profiled by Roll Call. And- “first Hillary, now Nancy Keenan…bring back Tom Daschle and Janet Reno and we can party like its 1995.”  Those stories and more are in this week’s Political Trough.

Great Falls Tribune- Speaker Knudsen: Ends do not justify means on following House rules

Make no mistake about it — this bill is a massive expansion of Obamacare in our state and will add tens of thousands of new participants into a medical welfare program that was originally intended to provide medical care for the disabled and truly needy.

I respect legislators who make decisions on policy for their constituents — that’s why they sent us here. But I am extremely disappointed that the Democratic caucus and a handful of Republicans would vote to throw out the legislative rulebook that we all voted on in January.

A group of representatives who were upset that they weren’t getting their way used procedural maneuvering to sidestep the rules, rendering them basically meaningless. This group has decided that they will use any means necessary to get what they want even if it means breaking the rules. A civilized body should never resort to an “ends justifies the means” mentality.

Happy Tax Day: Coal plant shuts down in Billings.  Isn’t it great to see your tax dollars at work on tax day? (sarcasm) Here’s the impact of your tax dollars being used to fund federal agencies that shut down jobs in your city.

KTVQ-TV: PPL Montana seeking interested parties in Corette Power Plant

As plans move forward to decommission the 47-year old Corette Power Plant in Billings, PPL Montana is now soliciting parties who may have an interest in acquiring, disposing, or using the facility for alternate use.

PPL Montana spokesman David Hoffman tells Q2 News that the plant site, its steam boiler, turbine and other equipment are on the market.

Former Racicot spokesman, Andrew Malcom, makes the list.  From PoliticoMEDIAWATCH

“Twitter’s most influential political journalists,” by Dylan Byers: “Ezra Klein, Nate Silver, Mike Allen and Ben Smith are the most influential political journalists on Twitter, according to a new survey from the social analytics firm StatSocial. The list … ranks the top 1,850 most influential political journalists according to their ‘pull’ with followers. … [T]he list does not include television anchors.” With top 20 political journalist tweeters http://politi.co/1IK50kh

11. Michelle Malkin, Twitchy
12. Andrew Malcolm, Investor’s Business Daily

Here are the top 20 most influential journalists on the right:

    1. Michelle Malkin, Twitchy
    2. Andrew Malcolm, Investor’s Business Daily
    3. Matt Drudge, Drudge Report

Roll Call: Life as Jon Tester’s Executive Assistant

“It’s not just a working relationship. They’ve become friends,” Tester spokeswoman Marnee Banks said. “After work, to unwind they’ll smoke a cigar and drink a beer, and then do it all again the next day.”

Or, as Tester put it in his patented biting humor, “Unfortunately, when my wife’s not here, he’s the last person I see at night and the first person I see in the morning — so it sucks.” (Cue the eruption of laughter.)

Jackson, a native of Lake Zurich, Ill., is one of a legion of assistants who can be found by senators’ sides as they move throughout the day — from the office to the subway, through the crowds of reporters who await the trains in the Capitol basement and to the Senate floor, and back again.

Hillary Clinton is back.  Or, as Marco Rubio points out, “a candidate from yesterday…just yesterday.”  Back here in Montana we found out, as I previously shared, that Nancy Keenan is coming back to serve as ED for the MT Democratic Party.  And to that, conservative power player Will Selph remarked, “First Hillary, now Nancy (Keenan)…bring back Tom Daschle and Janet Reno and we can party like its 1995.”

Clay Aiken’s ringing Hillary endorsement is below…

Dr. Franklin Graham came to Billings, Montana Tuesday night.

America is in trouble. At 62 years of age, I’ve lived long enough to learn that neither the Democrats nor the…

Posted by Franklin Graham on Tuesday, April 14, 2015

SayAnythingBlog.com: Coffee Shop’s Ban Of North Dakota Lawmakers Kinda Backfired

Amid the fury stemming from the North Dakota House’s defeat of an anti-discrimination bill, SB2279, the Red Raven Espresso Parlor posted a notice that they would be denying service to lawmakers voting no.

…the notice kind of backfired. And the only person who seems to have realized it is Rep. Josh Boschee, a Fargo Democrat and the first openly gay member of the state Legislature.

State Rep. Josh Boschee, a Red Raven regular and the state’s only openly gay lawmaker, said he didn’t like the tactic.  “I understand what they are trying to make a point but I would have done it differently,” the Fargo Democrat said.

The Daily Signal: Why Do We Need Louisiana’s Marriage and Conscience Act? Ask Indiana Pizza Owners.

Recent nationwide polling shows that 81 percent of Americans agree that the government should leave people free to live and work in accordance with their belief that marriage is between a man and a woman.

Nevertheless, such people are increasingly being ostracized, fired and facing death threats simply because of such beliefs.

National Review- Indiana’s RFRA: Eight Theses

Here’s a couple:

A wedding vendor who chooses not to service a same-sex wedding is not discriminating against a person’s being. Instead, the vendor believes that material cooperation in a particular event encroaches on his conscience.

To allege that RFRA incites rampant discrimination on the level of Jim Crow–era segregation ignores a fundamental distinction: Jim Crow segregation was state-sponsored discrimination. Regardless of what opinion a shopkeeper or a business owner had toward racial minorities, the law required him to discriminate. To give relief to a particular wedding vendor who feels uncomfortable servicing a gay wedding isn’t in any way comparable to state-sponsored discrimination.

Great story…look what showed up by surprise at the Montana Historical Society

Posted by Aaron Flint on Saturday, April 11, 2015

An oldie but goodie…

GEORGE OCHENSKI: It’s time for statesmanship at the 2015 Montana Legislature

But “the rub” for Democrats is that House Republicans cut some $160 million from Governor Steve Bullock’s initial budget request. From the harsh recriminations emanating from Governor Bullock, his budget director Dan Villa and the House Democratic minority, you’d think that Montana’s future will collapse without approving the entire amount for which the governor asked.

But to make a simple analogy, given that $160 million is only 4 percent of $4 billion, basically Bullock asked for a buck and is getting 96 cents, an amount he claims is “unacceptable.”

So, rather than tossing out a blanket veto threat, jumping on an airplane and flying off to Kalispell without taking questions, as Governor Bullock did late last week, perhaps he and his team should sit down with key Republican legislators and actually talk about the possibility for legislative compromise.

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