The Monday Memo: Anon Mailers, Senate/House Polls, & Election Confidence

Vote like you understand that someone died for your right to do so. – Unknown

Today’s independent commentary deals with these issues:

  • Anonymous Mailers
  • U.S. Senate – Montana
  • Montana House At-Large
  • Bonus – U.S. Senate – Missouri
  • Gallup – Confidence in Elections

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Published in: on November 5, 2018 at 5:20 am  Comments Off on The Monday Memo: Anon Mailers, Senate/House Polls, & Election Confidence  
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Thursday Numbers

The best preparation for good work tomorrow is to do good work today. – Elbert Hubbard

Welcome to “Thursday Numbers!” In case you’re a first-time visitor, this is the weekly column where I take a look at the numbers that are in the news (in descending order) and provide commentary sometimes sprinkled with sarcasm.

This week’s topics include Hot Lotto jackpot, dark money, Montana Cash jackpot, unemployment, Decision America Tour, fighter pilots, Zinke fundraiser, Paul Ryan, Trump Towers, NFL preseason, rain, and much more!

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Wednesday’s Odds & Ends

I wasn’t born here, but I blog here. –Jackie M. (Mike) Brown @TheWesternWord

Welcome to Wednesday! It’s just about time to start my Christmas shopping – so I will see you at the stores today and tomorrow!

Today is one of those days in which there are several stories out there that I want to comment about – so it’s another “Odds & Ends” day!

Here are today’s topics:

  • Best Montana Tweets of 2015
  • Gianforte is Exploring
  • Dark Money & the Wild West
  • Daines & the Red Kettle
  • Ice Ice Baby

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Caught My Eye…

We do not remember days, we remember moments. – Cesare Pavese

Welcome to Friday and the big show I like to call “Caught My Eye!” Can you believe this is the last day of July? Many of us are running out of Julys…

If you are a first-time visitor, “Caught My Eye” is posted here every Friday morning. This column is where I take a look at some of the stories I did not have time to write about during the week. Sometimes I throw in a touch of snarkiness to make you smile – or to irritate you just a little – maybe both.

Today’s topics include the Federal Highway bill, the Montana GOP and Dark Money, Veterans, Senate Appropriations Committee and the OPM data breach, the Cincinnati Shooting and much more!

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Caught My Eye…

It’s Friday – need I say more? Buckle up!

If you are a first-time visitor, “Caught My Eye” 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. Sometimes I throw in a touch of sarcasm to make you smile – or to irritate you just a little – or maybe both.

Today I provide valuable independent commentary about Dark Money & Religious Freedom in the Montana Legislature, Bowe Bergdahl, Ted Cruz, Harry Reid, a special obituary, plus I share a couple emails from my political inbox!

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MT Legislature: Dark Money

Tailored suits, chauffeured cars
Fine hotels and big cigars
Up for grabs, all for a price
Moneytalks by AC/DC

The Montana Legislature has been must-watch entertainment for the past few weeks, and we’re getting to a time in the 90-day session where the rubber meets the road. Members are a little tense and cranky. It’s a circus!

There are several reports from newspapers across the state today about the so-called “dark money” bill (Senate Bill 289) that was brought before a House committee yesterday. The Associated Press, Lee Newspapers, Great Falls Tribune, and the Bozeman Daily Chronicle all admirably covered the hearing.

With this much coverage, even Vice President Joe Biden would say “This is a big ^&%$% deal!”

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Congress: Same Old Same Old?

Congress heads back today for the ol’ “Lame Duck” session. Democrats in the senate will want to push some things through while they are in the majority; Republicans will want to wait because they will control the senate when the new congress takes over in January.

Then the Republicans will want to protect their majority for the 2016 election.

In other words, it will be the same old same old in Washington for the next two years. As I have written several times in the past, it’s all about the next election in Washington and the election in 2016 is a Presidential election. Neither side will want to make a mistake that will cost them the White House or control of the senate.

One thing they could address is campaign finance. Money flows to both sides pretty well.

CBS News recently reported, “The midterm election this month was the most expensive in history and $145 million came from anonymous donors.”

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Published in: on November 12, 2014 at 7:37 am  Comments Off on Congress: Same Old Same Old?  
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Caught My Eye…

It’s “Black Friday!” The holiday season is upon us! I hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving and were able to relax with family and friends.

If this is your first time visiting The Western Word, the “Caught My Eye” column is posted every Friday morning! This is when I take a quick 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 just to make you smile – or to irritate you just a little.

Today I write about Tim Fox’s letter, dark money, Jon Tester’s free trip, a Marijuana Editor, the “Breaking Bad” engagement, plus we have a winner who is Making Montana proud!

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Published in: on November 29, 2013 at 6:44 am  Comments Off on Caught My Eye…  
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Caught My Eye…

If it’s Friday then it’s time for another edition of “Caught My Eye!”

If this is your first time visiting The Western Word the “Caught My Eye” column is posted every Friday morning! This is when I take a quick 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 just to make you smile – or maybe to irritate you just a little.

Today I write about Dark money, Tim Fox and Columbus Day, Jon Tester and hostages, Steve Daines and Obamacare, President Obama and Bloggers, the Stenographer, My Advice to the Extremists, birthdays, plus we have a winner who is Making Montana Proud! There’s much more so read on…

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Dark Money

“Members of Congress should be compelled to wear uniforms like NASCAR drivers, so we could identify their corporate sponsors.”~Caroline Baum

Since a group of Republicans launched a ballot initiative campaign (Stop Dark Money) on Monday to rid Montana campaigns of “Dark Money” and provide full transparency, the Great Falls Tribune asked their readers, “Should ‘full transparency’ be required to assist voters in seeing where political campaign money comes from?”

By the way, “Dark Money” is a term used to define the money raised by groups who don’t have to disclose where they obtain their funding.

There were 248 responses to the Tribune poll and 96% said “Yes” and 4% said “No.”

Although this is a non-scientific poll, the results do show that people want to see transparency when it comes to money used in campaigns. That is great news for the Stop Dark Money folks. It’s too bad that the Montana Legislature failed to do something about this issue during their session earlier this year. That probably means we will have to go through another election cycle with undisclosed money ruining our elections.  That is, unless Montana goes the way of New York state Attorney General Eric Schneiderman, who will use, “his power as a regulator of charities and other nonprofit groups to force the transparency.”

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