Don’t be a maskhole. Wear a mask! – Unknown
Welcome to “Caught My Eye” (CME)!
CME is the once a week column that is posted 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. There may be some sarcasm and pointed independent commentary so be warned!
Here are the topics that “Caught My Eye” this week:
- China’s Cheerleader
- Cooney “Busy”
- The Mask Debate
- One More Thing
U.S. Senator Steve Daines (R-MT) is in the fight of his life for a second term. Polls show that he is trailing Governor Steve Bullock (D-MT) in a tight race. Daines also failed to raise as much money as Bullock this past quarter. They both have the same amount in the bank, but Daines has been fundraising for over five years and Bullock just entered the race a few months ago.
The Montana Democratic Party must feel that Daines is on the ropes. They recently sent a flyer, in the middle of summer no less, announcing that Daines is “China’s Cheerleader.” The Democrats contend, “Instead of holding China accountable, Senator Steve Daines has been China’s biggest cheerleader.” Here is the front page:
The flyer is 8” x 8” and is a tri-fold.
I knew it would not be long before the Republicans had a campaign ad on television about Lt. Governor Mike Cooney being fined for violating state ethics laws.
In case you forgot about it, Cooney was fined the maximum of $1,000 for violating state ethics laws by participating in a campaign-related video conference call from his state office.
RGA Right Direction PAC, an organization supported by the Republican Governors Association (RGA), was the first to go after Cooney:
The ad, titled “Busy,” highlights Cooney’s use of his office for personal political gain when working Montana families and small businesses were struggling amid the COVID-19 pandemic and resulting job losses.
You can watch “Busy” by clicking HERE.
THE MASK DEBATE:
Did you ever think that in the summer of 2020 we would be having debates about wearing protective masks in public?
I support the wearing of masks in public places.
I think those who are against wearing masks are being a little moronic. It’s petty. Others have made it political mostly because our President has made it political.
On Thursday, some Republican legislators holding an interim committee meeting in Helena decided to be asses and not wear masks although it was required. Lee Newspapers reports:
Video of the hearing of the Energy and Telecommunications Interim Committee shows Republican members Rep. Derek Skees, of Kalispell and chair of the committee, along with Billings Rep. Daniel Zolnikov and Sen. Keith Regier, of Kalispell, not wearing masks during the meeting at a room in the Capitol, while a legislative staff member did wear a mask.
The Democrats, who were part of the hearing but attending it virtually, stopped participating.
Republicans know that Governor Steve Bullock, a Democrat and possibly the next U.S. Senator from Montana, is seen by voters as doing a good job handling the pandemic. On Wednesday Bullock issued a directive requiring face coverings in certain indoor spaces and for certain organized outdoor activities in counties currently experiencing four or more active cases of COVID-19 to slow the spread of the virus in Montana. Helena is in Lewis and Clark County and has many more than four active cases.
The final line in the story from Lee Newspapers wraps it up nicely:
The canceled meetings highlight how wearing a mask has become a political issue even in the face of science that shows their effectiveness.
Science, not politics.
By the way, just to piss the anti-maskers off, I wore a mask while writing this column…
ONE MORE THING:
During a White House press briefing, Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany was asked about the President wanting schools to open. Here is the full question:
Well, you talked about earlier, with school districts — what we’re seeing is more school districts — at least in Virginia, for example, last night — deciding to go online only. What does the President say to parents out there who are now going, “Okay, what do I do with my kids?”
McEnany responded with:
You know, the President has said unmistakably that he wants schools to open. And I was just in the Oval talking to him about that. And when he says open, he means open in full — kids being able to attend each and every day at their school.
The science should not stand in the way of this.
Beam me up, Scotty…