Caught My Eye…

The people who influence you are the people who believe in you. – Henry Drummond

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 Rob Quist/Greg Gianforte and PAC money, Tim Fox, Jon Tester town hall, Ryan Zinke’s socks, American Health Care Act, Orrin Hatch, and much more!

No PAC Money, except:

I got a laugh out of the candidates in the U.S. House special election, Democrat Rob Quist and Republican Greg Gianforte, saying they won’t take Political Action Committee (PAC) money, but then saying they would take certain PAC money. You can read the Associated Press story HERE.

It’s like saying someone is “a little pregnant.”

So candidates Quist and Gianforte; please give us a break…

What Does Tim Fox Say…

Surely people did not think that Montana Attorney General Tim Fox went to Washington, D.C. just to be U.S. Senator Steve Daines’ guest for the President’s address to Congress, did they?

I know; don’t call you Shirley…

Fox is the newest flavor of the month to run against Senator Jon Tester, who is up for reelection in 2018. Fox was the second choice behind Zinke, who is now Secretary of Interior. I already said in my Thursday column that Fox can’t beat Tester. Neither could Zinke. Of course, if Tester was hit with a scandal or something, that could change.

When asked about the race by the Associated Press, Fox had this to say:

“A lot of people asked me about the 2018 election,” Fox said. “I appreciate people wanting to talk about this, it’s important for the people in our state. It’s not my priority at the moment.”

I tried to think of something Fox has done as Montana’s Attorney General. The only accomplishment I could think of was Fox subduing an intoxicated man in a bar. The man was throwing punches at Senator Daines’ chief of staff and Fox sat on the man until police came.

Somehow, someone will turn that into a great campaign commercial…

Tester Town Hall:

U.S. Senator Jon Tester (D-MT) will be holding a town hall meeting next Friday, March 17, in Helena. According to his press release, it is “an in-person town hall meeting.”

Since March 17 is St. Patrick’s Day, it would have been really brave for Tester to host the town hall meeting in Butte America.

Since the Helena event is being held in a school, I doubt we see much green beer being served, although I think the staff could at least offer those attending shamrock cookies. I think Tester should wear a leprechaun outfit…

Secretary Zinke’s Socks:

During a committee hearing this week, Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke donned a pair of socks “emblazoned with the portrait of America’s 40th president, Ronald Reagan.” (

Zinke is always pretty good at drawing attention to himself.

American Health Care Act:

The Republicans are pushing through their replacement for Obamacare, called the American Health Care Act. One House committee passed it in the early morning hours of Thursday. Another one passed it later in the day. It’s almost like they want to pass the bill before people realize what it does.

Some are asking if the Republicans learned anything from how the Democrats pushed through Obamacare. Maybe not.

Speaker of the House Paul Ryan did a PowerPoint presentation that I called on Twitter, “GOP Health Plan for Dummies.” Ryan is a smooth talker. At the end of his presentation, I was so excited that I was ready to buy a timeshare. You can watch his presentation HERE (the actual presentation starts 15 minutes into the video).

Some folks took to Twitter to poke fun at the Speaker.

Ryan is very much involved in this because the Republicans are having a hard time holding their members together (See Tom Cotton & Rand Paul). It will be somewhat of a miracle if they get it passed. Some reports are saying that 15 million fewer people might have healthcare under the GOP’s Obamacare replacement.

I want to see better healthcare for all. Let’s hope both sides work together to make our healthcare better.

Orrin Hatch:

U.S. Senator Orrin Hatch(R-UT) is considering running for his eighth term in the U.S. Senate next year. (Roll Call)

Hatch has served in the senate since January 1977. Counting senators who are still in office, Hatch is only behind Patrick J. Leahy (D-VT), who has been in the senate since January 1975.

Overall, Robert J. Byrd (D-WV) holds the longevity record. Byrd served 51 years, 5 months, and 26 days. Byrd passed away while in office. (U.S. Senate)

One More Thing:

When you reach the end of your rope, tie a knot in it and hang on. – Franklin D. Roosevelt


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4 thoughts on “Caught My Eye…

  1. Jackie, I think one of the main reasons you don’t think Fox is serious is because you don’t get out much.

    If you would have come down to Helena a few weeks ago you would have seen Tim Fox’s meth summit, which although two senators tried to take credit for it, it was put on by the AG Office.

    Tim Fox probably did a lot to ensure those 27 highway patrol positions didn’t get the ax.

    Anyways, Tester has no one to blame but himself for his current, tenuous position. Veterans is one of the big issues. No matter how much Jon talks, he can never get veterans better treatment or care. And how about that prescription drug vote?

    What a shame, and it’s an equal shame that Dems have New Jersey native Corey Booker coming to their shindig next week. I sure hope he doesn’t endorse Quist – God, that’d cost him a few points come May 25.

    Anyways, I’ve been saying for over a year now, go after Tim Fox’s private business.

    How many slums does he own in Helena? For awhile I just thought MT Dems were incredibly stupid to not go find that info out, talk to tenants.

    But then I realized that they like Tim Fox, and want him to win. It’s why MEA-MFT endorsed him last year.

    Very sad.

    • Greg – As always, thanks for your comments.

      Seems as though Fox’s meth summit received less coverage than his fight in the bar!

      I think he was probably endorsed by the MEA-MFT because he did not have a Democrat running against him until the last day. He won’t get that endorsement if he runs against Tester.

      Tester and Veterans? He is in a very unique situation being on Veterans Affairs and Veterans Approps committees. That’s the whole thing. He better have something to show for it by November 2018.

      Fox and slums in Helena? I don’t know anything about it – I don’t get out much…

      I don’t think Fox has had much competition in his last two AG races. When he went up against Bullock several years ago, he lost by about six points. He would probably lose to Tester by 8 points.

      Thanks again,


      • You thought Fox would only win by a few points in ’16. Turns out he got to nearly 70% of the vote. Forgive us if we pay no attention to your predictions.

        Greg is right — you don’t get out much. A lot of what you write really is out of sync with that’s really going on in Montana politics. This makes sense since you really haven’t been engaged for so many years. Perhaps your time would be better spent writing fiction or memoirs or something? Nobody who matters in Montana politics pays attention to your blog. Just sayin’.

      • Jeff – Thanks for reading and commenting!

        I’ll probably just keep doing what I’m doing and with more experience than most who write about politics in Montana.

        With love,


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