Letters to the editor April 25
Virus on the border
I searched for articles on migrants crossing the border with COVID-19 and possible consequences. Most of the media was stating that there is no reason to be concerned.
I have heard for a year now that I must stay at home, mask up in public and get vaccinated because COVID-19 is so deadly. The new variants are even more contagious. It makes sense to me that thousands of untested, unvaccinated migrants could be a danger to the population because the Brazilian variant has been found at the border. There are plans to send some of these people to Montana as well as other places across the country. In Montana the risk of getting Covid is very low right now.
If the media wants me to believe that there is not the tiniest bit concern of another flare up and shutdown, it is an insult to my intelligence.
—Marsha Graham, Kalispell
Assault on democracy
A March 28 headline in The Epoch Times reads: “River of Doubt Runs Through Mail Voting in Montana.”
In the pandemic summer of 2020, Gov. Steve Bullock permitted counties in Montana to conduct the 2020 election fully by mail, and a court struck down Montana’s law limiting ballot harvesting. In November, Rep. Brad Tschida hired attorney Quentin Rhoades to conduct an audit of Missoula County ballot envelopes, which was done in January. The results:
• 4,592 of 72,491 (6.3%) of mail-in ballots lacked an envelope, 55 lacked a postmark and 53 didn’t have a signature check, so 7% had unexplained irregularities that made them illegal to count.
• Dozens of envelopes had similar distinctive handwriting, suggesting one person may have illegally submitted multiple ballots.
• 28 ballots harvested from a nursing home had the same stylistic handwriting.
Bradley Seaman, Missoula County Elections Administrator, refused to provide video footage of vote-counting or allow pictures of the suspicious signatures, and had no explanations for the defective ballots which could easily affect close legislative and statewide races.
Democrats in the U.S. House passed HR-1, the For the People Act” and sent it to the Senate. Their bill:
• Eliminates any requirement for voter ID
• Allows non-citizens to vote
• Mandates mail-in ballots applications be sent to all people of voting age
• Prohibits dropping voters (including dead people) from voter rolls
• Allows unlimited ballot harvesting
In other words, this bill destroys the integrity of our elections and virtually guarantees fraud. The US Senate is now considering this bill. Please contact Senator Jon Tester and ask him to oppose this assault on our democracy.
—Phil Barney, Polson
Our GOP Montana Legislature is hopelessly mired in cutting taxes, cutting programs and cutting away the rights of anyone that disagrees with their ideology. They are voting down every useful bill brought forward by Democrats. Montanans have to live through our crises even if the Montana GOP doesn’t believe they exist and won’t even work to solve them — like climate change, the pandemic or homelessness.
Thank goodness for the “big government.” I am ecstatic that Democrats got the COVID relief package passed, over the stonewalling of Republicans. I am happy for the people (not me) who got stimulus money to spend in our economy and for the small businesses, the unemployed or at risk families, and the local governments that need the money badly to stay solvent for their communities. I am pleased as punch that the money will help solve this pandemic that used to be a “Democratic hoax” but actually interferes with our lives and our economy until it’s under control.
I am happy as a clam that Biden’s next big work is infrastructure — infrastructure that Montana badly needs like roads and bridges, railroads and broadband, and water projects. Yippee for infrastructure that actually responds to the crisis of climate change like electric car charging stations and investments in renewable energy production. Infrastructure used to be a bipartisan desire, but we have more Republican stonewalling. We have historical proof infrastructure investment builds jobs out from depression, supports business functioning, and grows the economy. I am glad the bill includes some roll back on the ridiculous GOP tax cuts. Corporations certainly use infrastructure to their benefits and they should pay their share.
If being excited about big actions for our big crises from our Democratic government is “deranged collectivism” then I guess I am all in.
—Jennifer Allen, Kalispell