Thursday, October 22, 2020

Election mail bag Oct. 17

| October 17, 2020 12:00 AM

Electing a Republican Senate

The coming election will determine what the next several decades will look like in congress and in the courts.

The Democrats have been talking about stacking the courts and creating new states for some time. The House of Representatives under Nancy Pelosi has already voted to make Washington D.C., a state and they are discussing making Puerto Rico a state as well. Such actions would guarantee adding four new Democrat senators. In Montana that would be a disaster for our logging, oil and gas industries, and make every business plan hinge on the mercies of environmental fanatics. We already know activist judges rule continually against our natural resource industries.

For the first time in decades we are seeing a change in the courts thanks to President Trump and a Republican Senate. That is why there is so much at stake in this election.

With President Trump’s reelection and a Republican Senate, we can continue de-politicizing our federal court system. If President Trump loses, all we have standing between us and an authoritarian liberal justice system is a Republican Senate.

Electing a Republican Senate has never been more important. Vote for Sen Daines on Nov. 3.

—Cynthia Waterman, Big Arm

Questioning Mitchell’s qualifications

What has Braxton Mitchell done to qualify for statewide office?

I am all for young people getting involved in politics, but that does not excuse them from being qualified. This, therefore, begs the question of what qualifies House District 3 candidate Braxton Mitchell to hold a legislative position?

From what is publicly available on his website and Facebook page, the only thing that makes Mr. Mitchell a “proven conservative” as he calls himself is the sharing of vile memes that disparage other human beings, associating himself with known propagandist Charlie Kirk, and outlining vague, enigmatic policy positions.

In an interview with the Hungry Horse News, Mr. Mitchell stated, “I grew up in Columbia Falls, and have always worked for the family business.” I know when I became of working age, my mother forced me to be employed with someone else before even thinking about a job at our family business. How is someone supposed to effectively work with others when their only work experience has been in a nepotistic environment?

Ironically, Mr. Mitchell makes a very big deal of being Montana born and raised while also throwing his whole support behind Greg Gianforte who was neither born nor raised in Montana. I get the sense this “born and raised requirement” is only important to Mr. Mitchell when applicable to someone from a different party.

Unlike Mr. Mitchell, Debo Powers has the experience and the independent voice Montana needs. Ms. Powers has detailed, well-informed policy positions that will benefit all of Montana. Her voice will not be yet another echo of national politics.

I am all for supporting young people in politics, but do not throw your support behind the inexperienced and unqualified. Vote Debo Powers for the people this November.

—Cole Dykhuizen, Kalispell

Republican endorsements

At the national level, Donald Trump is running for reelection as President. Progress on peace in the Middle East and much less illegal entry into the United States are two of his major accomplishments.

At the state level, Greg Gianforte is running for governor. His emphasis is to enhance freedom, health care, trades education, and create jobs by cutting taxes and eliminating bad regulations.

Steve Daines must be reelected to the U.S. Senate because he will continue to help Trump while Bullock will be Schumer’s lap dog.

Matt Rosendale must be elected to the U.S. House. As State Auditor he proved he was conservative by cutting expenses of the Auditor’s office by 23% and lowered health care premiums and drug costs.

Troy Downing as a businessman and veteran should be elected as State Auditor because of his experience in manufacturing, insurance and commercial real estate.

Christi Jacobsen who has worked in the Secretary of State’s office for several years will protect Montana from voter fraud and ensure fair elections if elected. She has a master’s degree in Public Administration from University of Montana and years of experience in the telecom industry.

Austin Knudsen as Attorney General will keep our families safe, defend our constitution, protect 2nd Amendment and property rights and support polices that keep our economy going strong. Knudsen served two terms as the Speaker of the House of Representatives in Helena and 10 years in private law practice.

Elsie Arntzen, Superintendent of Public Education and Lourie McKinnon Supreme Court Justice have both done a commendable job and deserve to be reelected.

At the local level, Brad Abell who is running for Flathead county commissioner is an excellent choice because of his many years of experience building infrastructure and running heavy equipment. He will help balance the need for growth while he protects our beautiful environment. He understands long-term planning and the issues involved at county level.

—Verdell Jackson, Kalispell

Bullock will fight for Montana

It takes a special kind of dishonest person to continue telling a lie after they’ve been called out on it multiple times, but apparently Senator Steve Daines is just that kind of person.

Daines and Washington groups supporting him claim that Governor Steve Bullock supports “government-run healthcare,” but that’s just not true. Governor Bullock has stood up to Democrats on this issue and is a strong proponent of making sure people can keep their private health insurance.

We need to come together to work for all Americans. After the debate, it is apparent that the disinformation that is being passed off as the truth is meant to divide our country.

Most people in our country want health care, clean air and water, safe schools and jobs so all Americans are able to live the American Dream. Bullock has supported Montana health care, public lands, and will continue to work for all people of Montana. Thank you Steve Bullock -- keep up the good work.

These groups are only lying about Governor Bullock because he’s proven time and time again that he will fight for affordable health care for Montanans, not for the insurance industry.

The same can’t be said for Senator Daines.

—Andy Baxter, Bigfork

Powers will serve HD3 well

I’m writing in support of Debo Powers, incumbent candidate for state representative from HD3. The district encompasses Columbia Falls, the North Fork and the Canyon. As a North Fork landowner, I have known and worked with Debo for more than 15 years. Throughout that time, she has demonstrated qualities that make her an outstanding representative of the district.

Debo works hard and gets things done. She listens to and respects other people, even when their views differ from her own. She focuses on the facts and on achieving practical solutions to problems. She is able to work collaboratively with others, and to do so with decency and integrity.

Her life experiences further qualify her to serve the people in HD3. Debo grew up in a military family. She worked in education for almost 30 years, first as a U.S. history and government teacher and then as principal of a grade school. She has been a strong and effective advocate for Montana’s public lands, not least as a member of the Whitefish Range Partnership. She has been a leader in local and statewide organizations. Somehow, she also has found time to serve as a volunteer fire lookout, to hike, garden, build a cabin, write a book, teach dance classes, organize an annual entry in the Polebridge Fourth of July parade, and to be a valued friend to many people.

I urge you to vote for Debo Powers. Her experience, good sense and ability to work with others will serve the people of HD3 well.

—Molly Shepherd, Polebridge

Bullock an ally to law enforcement

To the shady political groups who are falsely claiming Governor Bullock is anything other than a strong ally to our law enforcement — you clearly haven’t been doing your research.

Governor Bullock has even publicly said that he does not support defunding the police multiple times. Dirty political ads or people who claim otherwise are just trying to drum up fear where there shouldn’t be any. 

When Governor Bullock served as Attorney General, his job required close collaboration with the local law enforcement to keep our streets and communities safe. And while serving as Governor, Bullock continued to work alongside our law enforcement, passing bills and providing the funding they needed to secure life-saving equipment both for officers and civilians.

I am a retired Yellowstone Park Ranger with 18 years of law enforcement experience. During my tenure, we worked closely with local, county, state and other federal law enforcement officers in Montana. At no time did I hear that they felt unappreciated or unsupported by their superiors or administrators. It is very unfortunate that recently our law enforcement community has become a political football. They have a very difficult job to do, sometimes mistakes are made and occasionally we have a bad officer, but spreading disinformation and promoting fear about the level of support they have just makes their job more difficult.

Let’s send Governor Bullock to Washington to bring some Montana common sense to the Senate. Join me in voting for Governor Bullock for the U.S Senate in November.

—Craig McClure, Polson