I met Pam Bucy for the first time at a women’s meeting in Missoula. She spoke about seeking to become attorney general at November’s election. She impressed me as being the most intelligent woman I have ever met, and when she talked about the law, it was obvious she had so much experience in the field already. If the attorney general is Montana’s top cop and top lawyer, Pam is the woman for the job. She has already been there, working in the Attorney General’s office. I like to listen to people speak. I love politicians who can get me to cheer, but Pam, I just stood back in awe. As she spoke about the position, I had to admire her sheer knowledge of the field. Only experience can speak that way. She won my confidence, my respect, and admiration that day, and in November she has already won my vote.
Marilyn J. Ellis
Last Updated on Thursday, 11 October 2012 10:54
I am compelled to write as we approach the most critical election in this nation’s history since World War II.
In light of the uprisings and Embassy attacks in the Middle East since 9-11-12, the “blame” game has continued by the current administration. They blamed it on an obscure YouTube short video. They could have easily blamed Obama since his speech in Cairo in 2009, promising to close Gitmo in January 2010. Heck, he ordered it closed with his own words to us, “Gitmo will be closed,” and noting happened. His first presidential verbal order and it fell flat. Leadership ’09?.
The polls show that Obama’s approval ratings on foreign policy dropped after 9-11-12. Right now U.S. Navy Seals are dropping like flies too: Three since Osama Bin Laden was taken out about a year ago.
The Democratic National Convention omitted “God” and “Jerusalem” from their platform and stumbled badly after they somewhat voted to replace them.
They honored U.S. veterans with pictures of Russian naval warships on their big screen TV behind those honored vets. Worst DNC convention ever. Mistake or insult?
Obama would rather go on David Letterman and meet with the president of Egypt than to meet with the PM of Israel and mingle with Beyonce. He’ll probably be the first U.S. president never to visit Israel while he holds this office.
If you want all liberal U.S. Supreme Court justices, then Obama’s your choice. You are going to be shocked when you see who Obama is going to pardon when he leaves office too. It’s a coin toss if our troops will have their votes counted this time, but the Department of Defense isn’t making it easy for them to vote this time, either.
If you don’t give Romney-Ryan a chance, it’s going to be your fault this time. The fate of our county is in your hands, too. There might not be another one anytime later.
Last Updated on Thursday, 04 October 2012 22:07
It is clear by now that the federal Environmental Protection Agency intends to destroy the U.S. coal industry.
This summer, the EPA moved towards restricting coal train traffic and now there is the pending 2015 shutdown of the coal-fired PPL Montana Corette Power Plant here in Billings.
As voters we have a responsibility. EPA is a federal agency that reports to, and works at, the direction of the Executive Branch (U.S. president). Either make a change there or make the change in the legislative branch (Congress), which funds the agency. Either approach works.
James E. Reno
Yellowstone County commissioner
Last Updated on Saturday, 29 September 2012 20:10
It is important that we elect Kirk Bushman to the Public Service Commission. Kirk graduated from Billings Central High School, has an engineering degree from Montana State University Bozeman and for many years has worked on team projects locally, across the U.S. and throughout the world.
Kirk’s dad, the late Don Bushman, was a career employee at the Cenex refinery in Laurel. Kirk also worked at the refinery every summer during his college years. His education and background provide a balanced approach to the work of the PSC.
I served eight years on the Billings City Council with his opponent, Mayor Chuck Tooley, and found Chuck to be polite, cordial and easy to work with. However, my experience with our mayor and council was generally limited to watching a group trying to find ways to increase revenue for Billings rather than finding ways to reduce the budget. Looking for ways to increase revenue for the government without regard for the taxpayer is not the experience I want for our commissioner.
In addition, Chuck’s degree is in theater arts, and his energy/environmental work involved former Vice President Gore’s programs. I don’t believe that his education and background would give District 2 consumers the same balanced approach Kirk would provide.
If you elect Kirk Bushman to the Montana PSC, you will have a elected a commissioner who understands the needs of the consumer, has a rational approach to energy development and knows what is needed to protect the environment.
Shirley Girard McDermott
Last Updated on Saturday, 29 September 2012 20:08
If Steve Bullock wins the race for governor, it won’t be long until we will wish we had Brian Schweitzer back in the governor’s chair. At least with Brian, you knew every policy revolved around his own self interests regardless of party philosophy.
But Bullock is a liberal’s liberal. He has always supported bigger government since that’s the only job he has ever known. Bullock votes in lockstep with job-killing radical environmentalists and that means no support for oil, gas, coal and all the tax revenues they bring to our state. He fully supports the government takeover of our health care.
My vote will go to Rick Hill, an experienced small businessman and fiscal conservative. He has the ideas we need to get government out of the way so small businesses and entrepreneurs can take our great state in the right direction.
If you want bigger government, higher taxes, more regulations and increased unemployment, Steve Bullock is your man. If you want smaller, more efficient government, lower taxes, less burdensome regulations and more good paying jobs, the only choice in this race is Rick Hill.
Last Updated on Saturday, 29 September 2012 20:06
I write to address the vacuous and condescending assertions about voter ID laws made by Attorney General Eric Holder in his recent speech to the NAACP convention and by Cokie and Steve Roberts in a guest editorial published in the Gazette.
They allege that laws requiring voters to show photo identification at the polls on Election Day constitute a “poll tax” and disenfranchise elderly, young, poor and minority voters because members of those groups are less likely to have an acceptable form of identification. They go on to accuse those who support such a law of racism and attempting to suppress the vote.
As former chief elections officer of Montana, I reject these baseless claims. Those who make them have proclaimed themselves the chosen occupiers of the moral high ground while simultaneously engaging in the bigotry of lowered expectations. The absurd accusations of premeditated voter suppression and discrimination are demeaning to the very people these liberal elites supposedly seek to protect.
Mr. Holder and the Roberts paint every elderly, young, poor and minority voter with the same broad brush. In fact, they would have us believe that every member of these demographic groups is fundamentally incapable of meeting even basic societal responsibilities and requirements. The height of their collective arrogance is truly stunning.
Additionally, these three clearly consider themselves much brighter than the vast majority of Americans, given the fact that 72 percent of respondents in a recent Rasmussen poll support having to show photo ID at the polls. And, 73 percent of those polled remain unconvinced that these laws are either a “poll tax” or discriminatory in nature.
The Supreme Court of the United States also agrees with the unwashed masses rather than with our elitist friends. Recently, the court upheld Indiana’s photo ID law in a 6-3 decision. In his opinion for the majority, the liberal Justice John Paul Stevens wrote that requiring photo identification at the polls “does not qualify as a substantial burden on most voters’ right to vote, or represent a significant increase over the usual burdens of voting.”
In addition, those opposing these laws conveniently ignore their provisions to assist voters who do not have the proper form of identification. The statutes in question all recognize driver’s licenses, passports, military identification cards, and other forms of government-issued ID as acceptable proof of identity. If a voter does not have an acceptable form of ID, the state will provide one free of charge.
Citizen concern is on the rise over increasing incidents of voter fraud coming to light across the country. It is time that we take a prudent and commonsense approach to preserving and enhancing the integrity of Montana’s elections. Montanans take the threat of election fraud very seriously. Our policy makers should do the same.
The goal of these laws is not to suppress the vote or to disenfranchise voters. The goal is to maintain, at the highest level possible, the faith and confidence the voters have in the outcome of our elections. Clearly, that confidence has been shaken when 64 percent of likely voters in the above mentioned Rasmussen poll believe that voter fraud is a serious or somewhat serious problem. The desire to provide Montanans a greater level of assurance that our elections are fair and secure is neither racist nor partisan. It is reasonable, rational and the right thing to do.
Last Updated on Saturday, 29 September 2012 20:05