Wednesday’s Political Odds & Ends

Freedom is the right to tell people what they do not want to hear. – George Orwell

Welcome to Wednesday! When there are several stories out there that I want to comment about, I combine them into an “Odds & Ends” or “potpourri” column. Today is one of those days!

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The “Political Odds & Ends” today include these topics:

  • Cascade County Attorney John Parker
  • MT Republican Legislators & Education
  • Montanans for Community Development
  • Speaker of the House Paul Ryan?

Cascade County Attorney John Parker:

Cascade County Attorney John Parker is in trouble. The Great Falls Tribune reported Tuesday that the Montana Supreme Court Commission on Practice has filed a disciplinary complaint against him for allowing three unlicensed attorneys to practice law under the student practice rule. You can read the story and the complaint HERE.

I think Parker has lost the public’s confidence. I called on him to resign when I felt he botched the Adam Sanchez, Jr., case last year.

He should leave immediately before he does more damage.

MT Republican Legislators & Education:

The Billings Gazette reported that in a letter dated back in August about 50 Republican legislators implored Montana’s congressional delegation to reject $40 million in federal preschool grant funding.

Of course if that grant was going to something they actually cared about, like a new federal building or highway repairs in their district, they would be sending a letter telling the delegation to take it.

One of their reasons for asking the delegation to reject the grant was they don’t want more federal intrusion into state and local education policy and funding.

State Sen. Elsie Arntzen, who is a Republican candidate for the Office of Public Instruction, signed the letter. The Montana Democrats were quick to point that out.

Montanans for Community Development:

I was happy to see the U.S. Supreme Court refuse to take up the case from the Montanans for Community Development. The Associated Press reported:

U.S. District Judge Dana Christensen had ruled that Montanans for Community Development must answer questions about the group’s formation, operation and communications with candidates and other groups. The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals upheld Christensen’s ruling.

Our elections are pretty screwed up already. We need to know where the money comes from. Full disclosure of any group and the people who donate to these groups is the only way to go.

Apparently others feel the same way. The Great Falls Tribune asked the question, “Should Montanans for Community Development have to disclose its donors and spending?” There were over one hundred responses, and 90% of those answering the question said yes.

Speaker Paul Ryan?

U.S. Representative Paul Ryan (R-Wisconsin) may run for Speaker of the House if he gets endorsements from the three different groups in the House GOP caucus. (Source)

He made other requests, too. Check out the Hashtag on Twitter #MoreReasonableSpeakerConditions for some funny Tweets.

Probably the far-right wing group called the Freedom Caucus will find it hard to endorse Ryan. I affectionately call them the fruitcake caucus.

As for Montana’s Representative, Ryan Zinke, he tweeted that he’s “All in for @RepPaulRyan for #SpeakerOfTheHouse”

Paul Ryan is the best choice to be Speaker.