Caught My Eye…

Nobody cares how much you know, until they know how much you care. – Theodore Roosevelt

Welcome to the big show to end the week “Caught My Eye” (CME)!

I’ve missed posting columns for a couple days due to a personal issue, but I am back and ready to give my independent commentary on the issues that “Caught My Eye” this week!

If you are a first-time visitor, CME is posted right here every Friday morning. This is when I take a look at some of the stories I did not have time to write about during the week. I often throw in a touch of sarcasm to make you smile – or to irritate you just a little – maybe both.

Topics that I am providing commentary on today include Ryan Zinke & Interior, Flaw in the Law, Aaron Flint, and much more!

Ryan Zinke & Interior:

When I first heard that U.S. Representative Ryan Zinke (R-Mont.) was being considered for Secretary of the Interior in the Trump Administration, I figured it was just another “fake news” story.

But it was true. The Trump transition team sent a press release announcing it.

For a few days, Ryan Zinke has been in the news big-time. I think Zinke likes that attention. Being a low-ranking member of the U.S. House does not give him the attention he craves. Now he will be the Secretary of the Interior for President Donald J. Trump.

I’m not yet into who will fill or what will happen to the open seat that will be decided by a special election. I’m not into how qualified Zinke is for the post because it does not matter.

I am into how much Zinke will screw over Montana by abandoning his House seat – and a coveted seat on the House Armed Services Committee. Zinke reminds me of a child who gets a new toy and after a few hours throws it in the corner and wants something new.

There are 435 members of the U.S. House. Things get done with seniority. When Zinke departs to be Secretary of the Interior, the person who replaces him will be near the bottom, once again. Montana will be near the bottom, once again.

A few months ago I wrote that I want someone from Montana to stay in the freakin’ U.S. House of Representatives long enough so the people at the door to the House chambers know their name. Dennis Rehberg ticked me off when he decided to run for U.S. Senate as a member of the House just as he was just getting some clout built up. Steve Daines ticked me off when he did the same thing after one term.

Now Ryan Zinke has abandoned ship. He will probably grow tired of being the Secretary of the Interior when he discovers that committee chairs and ranking members from the Natural Resources and Interior Appropriations subcommittees and their counterparts in the Senate have more clout and can do more for their states than a temporary Secretary.

He may discover this before it’s the deadline to file for the U.S. Senate against Jon Tester. Then we may see him throw his Secretary of the Interior “toy” in the corner…

Flaw in the Law:

The Associated Press reported this about the replacement for Ryan Zinke:

Montana Rep. Ryan Zinke’s decision to join President-elect Donald Trump’s cabinet has exposed a potential constitutional flaw in the first test of a new state law on filling vacancies in the U.S. House and Senate.

The law calls for a special election to be held between 85 and 100 days of a vacancy. It also gives the governor the option of appointing a temporary replacement from the same political party of the departing representative or senator who would serve until the election results are certified.

However, Secretary of State Linda McCulloch says the U.S. Constitution allows only for the appointment of an interim senator, and not for an interim representative. “The bill and subsequent annotation is contrary to the United States Constitution which requires a special election, but no appointment,” McCulloch said in a statement Wednesday. 

That’s embarrassing for Montana – especially those who serve in the legislature and those who draft the bills for the legislators. The AP also reported that the bill had only three dissenting votes out of 150 Montana representatives and senators.

The members of the Montana Legislature seem to be a few fries short of a Happy Meal…

Aaron Flint:

I was happy to read that Aaron Flint was hired as U.S. Representative Ryan Zinke’s state director. I’ve known Aaron for many years. We were co-workers for U.S. Senator Conrad Burns.

Congrats to Aaron.

Aaron just finished a stint with Greg Gianforte as his Communications Director in the Montana Governor campaign. It will be interesting to see if Gianforte throws his hat into the ring for the Montana House seat that Ryan Zinke currently occupies. Maybe the band – the Team Gianforte campaign band – will get together for one more gig.

One More Thing:

After all is said and done, more is said than done. – Aesop


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2 thoughts on “Caught My Eye…

  1. Ummm, didn’t Aaron just get left without a boss? Pending hinky Zinke’s confirmation, of course.

    I was happy to read that Aaron Flint was hired as U.S. Representative Ryan Zinke’s state director. I’ve known Aaron for many years. We were co-workers for U.S. Senator Conrad Burns.

    Congrats to Aaron.

    • Doug – Who knows what the plan is. Maybe Gianforte will run for the seat? -JmB

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