Two roads diverged in a wood and I – I took the one less traveled by, and that has made all the difference. – Robert Frost
Welcome to the big show to end the week “Caught My Eye” (CME)!
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 Zinke & Public lands, Montana Legislature, Quist for Congress, E-CITY Beat, College Football, and One More Thing!
ClimateWire, Public Lands, & Zinke:
I don’t have a subscription to “ClimateWire” to read the whole story, but I saw this piece of information about U.S. Representative (and Interior Secretary nominee) Ryan Zinke:
Dems compile 700 pages of opposition research on Zinke
Democrats crafted a massive opposition book on Rep. Ryan Zinke last summer that could help fuel questions about his business affiliations in the weeks before his confirmation hearing as Interior secretary under President-elect Donald Trump.
I’ve only compiled about 200 pages. I must be slacking.
This might turn out to be an interesting confirmation hearing for Zinke after all, especially after his recent vote to change the rules to make it easier to transfer federal lands to the states.
Usually in two or three weeks after the Montana legislature convenes the members start growing tired of each other and cranky. That’s when the fun begins. The state of Montana has listed the ways in which the public can monitor and participate in legislative proceedings. Check out the press release HERE.
Let them know how you feel.
Look Under the Cushions:
The Associated Press (AP) reported this week that some Montana government agencies are volunteering to return a total of $5.5 million that had been budgeted to them this year. That’s nearly $15 million short of what Republican legislative finance leaders had been seeking to help the state’s bottom line as budget negotiations begin.
I suggest they have change buckets placed around the capitol and call it “Change that you can believe in” or some other catchy phrase where people visiting could drop off their loose change. They should also think about holding a bake sale or two. Maybe they could ask everyone to check under their cushions at home and send what they find (moneywise, not old fries) to the Montana State Capitol.
Rest assured Montana, the budget has to be balanced before they leave. That’s their job. They will need to cut spending and/or raise taxes and fees to do it. The fun will be watching them moan and complain during the process.
Rob Quist for Congress:
Montana musician Rob Quist will seek the Montana Democratic Party’s nomination to replace the state’s lone congressman, Republican Ryan Zinke. (Missoulian)
He’s serious enough about the race that he launched a campaign website that you can view HERE.
Whoever runs for the seat I hope that they plan on staying awhile, if elected. Montana has been hurt by politicians who use the House seat as a stepping stone for other offices.
A friend told me about a new blog in Great Falls called E-City Beat. They will be writing about news, politics, and commentary from (and about) the Electric City, Montana, and beyond.
Welcome to the lucrative world of blogging!
CFP National Championship:
Monday is the College Football Playoff National Championship! Who do you think will win, Alabama or Clemson? Take the poll:
One More Thing:
It was so cold in Helena this week that I heard several reports of politicians at the state legislature with their hands in their own pockets…