Archive for April 23rd, 2008

by Pete Talbot

Erik Iverson, Rep. Denny Rehberg’s hatchet man and chairman of Montana’s Republican Party, has a guest column in today’s Missoulian.

In Montana, there probably isn’t a more divisive subject than guns and Iverson uses this wedge issue to attack Barack Obama.

” … Obama has shown that if elected president he will try to take away many of the freedoms we hold dear … ,” Iverson writes.

That’s rather a sweeping statement. So is the line that Obama will ” … arm the criminals and prevent law-abiding citizens from defending themselves.”

Looks like Iverson is taking a page out of the Karl Rove play book on smear tactics.

Obama has already stated that he’s a defender of the Second Amendment. And even if he has some concerns about concealed weapons, he’s not going to start chipping away at gun rights when he gets in office. He has a few other issues on his plate, thanks to the current administration: things like Iraq and Afghanistan, health care, and a recession.

I’ve haven’t seen any platform coming out of Obama’s campaign that would suggest an anti-gun stance. And also keep in mind that there are a few checks and balances in place. We have a Supreme Court that just ruled against the Washington, D.C., gun ban. There’s also a Congress that is loathe to advance any gun control legislation (the Assault Weapons Ban and Law Enforcement Protection Act of 2007, which would re-up the expired 1994 assault weapon ban, is still languishing in Congress).

So why would Iverson hint that Obama wants to take away your guns? Because it’s a hot-button issue, like gay marriage or flag burning, that’s meant to distract voters from the lousy record that Republicans (i.e. Rehberg) have on the pressing issues of the day.

And why would getting rid of Rehberg help stem this flow of political sleaze? Because as Rehberg’s Chief of Staff, Iverson’s paycheck comes from Rehberg’s office (well, actually, the taxpayers).

Dump Denny and you shut down Iverson and his brand of gutter sniping, at least for awhile.

Mission accomplished.

by Pete Talbot

It takes a professional writer with some personal experience with Bill Nooney to really do justice to the representative from H.D. 100.

Bill Vaughn over at Dark Acres gives an excellent synopsis of Nooney’s infamous first term in the Montana House of Representatives.

My only complaint with the piece is this line: “Although I haven’t been in a voting booth in years, I’m going to enjoy casting a ballot again,” Vaughn writes. Sometimes it takes a horrendously bad candidate to get someone active in politics but still, shame on you Mr. Vaughn.

(Incidentally, on June 3, there will be a Democratic primary in House District 100 between Gary G. Brown and E. Willis Curdy. I couldn’t find a website for either candidate but 4&20 will keep you posted.)

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