Some crumpets with that tea, Steve?

by Pete Talbot

When Montana Rep. Steve Daines votes to the right of Wisconsin Rep. Paul Ryan on a budget bill, well, that says it all.

Please keep in mind that Ryan was selected as Mitt Romney’s vice-presidential candidate in 2012, basically to placate the Republican fringe because Romney was too “moderate.”

The budget bill, hammered out by Ryan and Democratic Sen. Patty Murray of Washington, is a deal designed to avoid future government shutdowns.  To say that it’s moderate legislation would be an overstatement.  There are curbs on federal workers’ pensions; there are no tax increases for anyone or extensions of benefits for 1.3 million unemployed, or relief for kids on the WIC program or families on food stamps or … but it’s probably the best we’ll get out of this congress.

The final tally was 332-94 in favor of the compromise bill.  Daines voted “no” with just 62 of the most far-right members of the U.S. House.

If Ryan is a tea party darling, what does that make Daines?


  1. d.g.

    yawn…………..daines is a measly sucker in a pool of piranha; shall we analyze dick cheney next? frankly, i think john engen is more insidiously malevolent in his masquerade as a progressive; at least daines is a known entity and largely outnumbered. let’s move on.

    • Pete Talbot

      “let’s move on,” says d.g. Excellent advice. Time for you to move on from your fixation on Engen and the Missoula ballpark fiasco. Yes, the ballpark was a bad idea, and Engen could be more progressive. Get over it. Comparing Engen to Daines is just plain stupid.

      • d.g.

        mmmm Peter pulls of the gloves. Actually “Pete”, in the realm of political efficacy and how the poor are treated under paid politicos, your repeated-and-repeated-and-repeated “quips to the choir” (the seven-member attendance at 4 & 20) are like tapioca tabloids. Where’s your take, Pete, on this Monday’s move by city council to allow all downtown businesses to have two sandwich signs blocking the sidewalk while simultaneously moving “aggressive panhandler” transients 20 feet further toward the curb? Oh, I forget, local politics are not cache’. (And the parents might disapprove.) So yea, let’s roast idiot Daines again and again and again. There’s nothing as phony as someone who doesn’t have to go to work on Monday morning and pretends otherwise.

        • d.g.

          hmmm…..pete out raking the lawn where the deer used to bed? I heard in a dream that pete once gave 4 dollars to a homeless guy outside albertsons and then went back 3 hours later and asked if he (the freezing-sorta-guy) thought that Daines would run for mt senate.

          • Pete Talbot

            Jeez, I wish the deer didn’t bed down on my lawn; I trip over them in the morning when I go and get my paper. Seriously, I have to fence everything I plant. I’m hoping they reintroduce wolves into the Rattlesnake to cull most of the deer from the ‘hood.

            Anyway, I know who you are, d.g.; a confused, lonely soul. May the holidays bring you some relief from your tortured life.

  2. A Schmuck?

  3. lizard19

    take a trip down memory lane, back to February, when the Missoulian editorial board applauded how Daines brings common sense to Congress.

    • I like this kernal they give us:

      “Specifically, they were cheering for Daines’s statement that members of Congress should not be able to collect a paycheck until they reach an agreement on the federal budget.”

      It does go on to say this:

      “Now, all three of Montana’s congressional delegates can get back to the critical work of creating a balanced budget and a plan to reduce the federal debt.”

      Well, for the first time in years we have a budget, doesn’t make everyone happy, but wow, a budget…almost forgot what that was!

      • d.g.

        The Missoulian Editorial Board is reminiscent of Christie’s “And Then There Were None”, don’t you think? As corporate Lee Enterprises prolapses cash at record rates, the squeeze shoot is heavy on rural cash cows like The Missoulian (gods bless Denny and the Reserve-Street Big Boxes) to produce gallons of gold each week. Every credible journalist (save the folksy Kim Briggeman and the gutsy Betsy Cohen) bailed ship over a year ago. So now the nuggets from the “editorial board” are rather like the results of loading the blender in the dark at a tequila party. Somewhere between Mr. Rogers and Pee Wee’s Playhouse lies this sad affair. With the divinely dichotomous Ms. Devlin writing lines like “putting a heart-shaped welcome mat” at the door of the Missoula Merchantile to greet the new (oops! they’re selling out and the window aren’t washed) investors, we never know what to believe and, in fact, it’s all rather incredulous. To “site” the Missoulian on anything of late means, does it not, that Perez Hilton will soon be marrying the widow Mandela?

        • Yeah, I guess if they’ve got a $171 million loss this quarter ($101 million after taxes), coming out of a 2012 bankruptcy that saw them with $847 million in debt then they probably have other things on their mind.

          Guess those print ads aren’t working out too well. Personally I don’t go to that site for their ads, I go to it for their content – seems like a failed business model to me.

          • d.g.

            There’s a human side, too, Greg. Years ago (when flush…or so they thought) Lee Enterprises bought up their rural competition. They bought the local “Auto-Finder”. They bought the Bitterroot local newspaper “The Ravalli Republic”. Now they squeeze (and compromise as necessary) these once-locally-owned enterprises to pay off their expotentially-exploding debts. And the true truth in reporting of issues degrades like single-ply toilet tissue.

            • Thanks for the info, wasn’t aware of it at all.

              • d.g.

                …..and I have this from a young reporter for the Ravalli Republic. Not making it up…. Imagine the income generated by: Target; Home Depot; Lowe’s.; Best Buy: Cine 10; etc. etc. etc. etc. Now put yourself in Editor Sherry Devlin of the Missoulian’s position and imagine publishing a piece “anti-business” (be it from environmental or humanitarian or financial angles). Quite simply: It ain’t gonna happen! So, call me a fool, but when Peter Talbot and his far-flung pals of liberalism type here late at night (but NEVER appear in person at our city council on behalf of the really poor), I get mean-seeming and judgmental; who the hell cares about Daines when our much-loved mayor is putting the poor in an early grave and Pete and Mione are building “luxury townhouses”???

  4. http://www.theguardian.com/world/2013/dec/11/bipartisan-budget-act-winners-losers

    Just another puppet. But, unlike Sen. Murray, in this instance, at least, he’s not a Pentagon patsy.

  5. Big Swede

    Paul Ryan a TP? Really? The TP’s #1 concern is govt. spending. This proposal is full steam ahead.

    “The Republican party has given up. They’ve spotted the iceberg, but the Captain and crew refuse to turn the ship around, and everybody else is partying because they think its unsinkable. Republicans are, metaphorically, dressing like women and children to make sure they get a spot on one of the lifeboats.” -V the K

    Daines doesn’t cross dress.

    • Steve W

      Gosh, where were all these Tea Party kids when bush was putting Iraq and Afghanistan on the credit card?

      Maybe they weren’t old enough to vote back then?

      Or is their burning concern with government spending a new found fetish? Cross dressing indeed, Swede.

      • Big Swede

        Because of the curvature of the earth the $24T iceberg didn’t seem so large.

        By the way if we’re generous the wars cost $1T. The debt with this new deal still will be $24T when King Putt leaves office. Along with $90T of unfunded liabilities.

      • d.g.

        well over a million orphans sleep tonight on the streets in Iraq….and dick and geo w. curl in the fetal swastika position on 2000-thread-count sheets. and humble cindy sheehan was the only person who would stand at g-dub’s “ranch” gates and ask “why???”

        • Big Swede

          Daily death tallies and Cindy. Sure do miss them.

          I suppose they’ll all be back in 2016. That and drones will replace the nerf rockets with sidewinders.

  6. Matthew Koehler

    And yet, the Montana Wilderness Association uses nearly $1 million they have gotten to serve as an “independent contractor” for the out-of-state Pew Foundation in an all out PR blitz to try and convince Montanan’s that Rep Daines is some great bi-partisan who is open to public lands and Wilderness protection.

    Fact is, Sen Tester’s mandated logging bill is bad enough and contains enough terrible precedents on its own. The price for getting Daines on board with Tester’s mandated logging bill will only result in a bad bill with terrible precedents getting that much more watered down.

    Q: Just how low is the Montana Wilderness Association willing to go?

    • d.g.

      An odd “aside” perhaps, but I highly recommend Dyana Furmansky’s “Rosalie Edge—Hawk of Mercy: Saving Nature from the Conservationists”. It’s important to see how the elitist Audubon Society once sold hunting rights on its estuaries to the highest (white, male) bidder. Egret for supper, anyone?

  7. Pete Talbot

    Some comments on your comments:

    I realize that attacking Daines voting record is low-hanging fruit but I’m thinking that even Denny Rehberg would have voted for the compromise bill. Daines is on the fringe.

    I see your point, Steve Kelly, about Murray’s defense spending (Boeing is a major employer in her state) but Ryan is no dove.

    Swede, you should be happy with this bill; no tax increases, it cuts the deficit by $56 billion over the next two years and still gives defense about a half a trillion annually. And those deadbeat poor people and their kids won’t have any increases in SNAP or WIC (they’ll probably see more cuts).

    • d.g.

      So, like, we’re comparing rotten apples to rotten apples in the hopes of producing an appreciative tasting clientele who, like, know the difference (at the metaphysical level) between diarrhea and dysentery?

    • Big Swede

      My biggest disagreement with the bill was in the fine print section.

      “Senate Republicans scrubbing the Ryan-Murray budget deal have come across a little-noticed provision that will limit the GOP’s ability to block tax increases in future years.

      The bill includes language from the Senate Democrats’ budget that voids senators’ ability to raise a budget “point of order” against replacing the sequester cuts with tax increases.

      The process is quite complicated, but in practice it grants Harry Reid the authority to send tax increases to the House with a bare majority, rather than the 60-vote threshold that would be required under a point of order.”-NR

  8. lizard19

    our local media assists this continued shift to the right. I don’t even think our media covered this story. so Daines keeps getting a pass, extreme tea party politics continues to get normalized, and progressives will keep losing ground.

    • d.g.

      Can we define “local media” without snorting nine-dollar wine out our noses? Someone needs to call Rick Bass and give him a black collar and some frankincense to lay the “Independent” (snort wine) to rest. Dear gods: Remember when the Independent meant something??? If it were not for the “Public Notices” announcing the sale of personal property by those bankrupted by cancer, this “Calendar of Caligula” would have lined its last parakeet cage seven years ago. God bless Erica Frederickson and the real-writers-left but this masquearade of malfeasance needs to go away. Simply.

  9. Craig Moore

    If voting against the budget means that the voter right of Ryan, what does that make 32 Democrats? http://www.politico.com/story/2013/12/house-democrats-budget-deal-congress-32-dems-refuse-to-swallow-budget-101112.html

    • lizard19

      that’s kinda boring, they had the “flexibility” to vote their discontent because, I’m assuming, it will help future reelection campaigns.

  10. Pete Talbot

    First, Craig, no tax increases to help balance the budget? Even Wyoming conservative ex-Senator Alan Simpson (Simpson-Bowles Plan) thought there should be increases to help offset the deficit. So, in my humble opinion, it wasn’t that great a compromise. Democrats should have held out for a better deal but they’re just as influenced by public opinion (the lowest congressional poll ratings ever) as Ryan and co.

    And, if you’re thinking that the 32 Democrats were irresponsible in their vote, well, they were outnumbered big time by the 62 Republicans who also voted against the bill.

    • Craig Moore

      Pete, don’t project. My question is straight forward and simple. If voting against the budget makes the voter right of Ryan, then what does that make the 32 Democrats that voted with Daines? Lizard completely ignored the gang of 32.

      • Pete Talbot

        Here’s the “straight forward and simple” answer, Craig: the 32 Democrats voted their progressive conscience (they didn’t vote with Daines!). Just like the 62 Republicans voted for their tea party principles — that’s the whole point of the post — Daines is far-right tea party.

        • So do the majority of Montanans applaud his vote yesterday or condemn it? I think most would support it, unfortunately.

          • Pete Talbot

            I’d like to think they’d condemn it, Greg.

        • Craig Moore

          Pete, they did vote with Daines although their reasons varied for doing so. As to voting conscience, Daines said, “While I’m encouraged by ongoing efforts to develop bipartisan proposals and commend Chairman Ryan and Chairman Murray for their work to find agreement, I am concerned that this budget proposal does not provide Montanans with a much-needed solution to our debt crisis… Rather than taking serious and needed steps to address Washington’s spending addiction and growing debt, this budget relies largely on spending cuts many years from now to offset immediate spending increases.”

          • Pete Talbot

            Daines may be a freshman but he seems to be mastering politispeak.

  11. Craig Moore

    correction: strike Lizard. Pete, I was referring to you. My mistake.




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