Montana Conservatives Not Sold on Rick Hill


Establishment Republicans Hill and Conrad Burns

While it appears GOP Gubernatorial candidate  Rick Hill has the reluctant? support of the typical establishment Republicans in Montana, the new breed of Montana conservative isn’t so sure.  While I love a guy with confidence- anyone with confidence for that matter- there is a fine line between that and arrogance.  If a candidate is going to mention, in a newspaper interview; that he was part of the TEA party before it was cool, he better have the voting record to back up such claims.  In the case of Rick Hill, he clearly does not.    This morning, a prominent Montana conservative forwarded me the following email thread which was sent to a list of other prominent liberty-minded Montana Republicans:

Hello everyone,

I went to the JBS web site and looked up the old Freedom Indexes for when Rick Hill served in Congress 1996-2000.  Can you say RINO?  I have attached them if you are interested.

105th Congress:  Aug ’97   –   60%

Jan ’98 –      40%      July ’98 –     70%

Oct ’98   –    39%  (yes, that’s what it was)

106th Congress:  Aug ’99    –   80%     Jan ’00   –     65%

July ’00  –     65%          Nov ’00   –    65%

And a reply from another prominent Republican:

Good job XXXXXXXXXX!
These are the real issues of this man who calls himself a Republican but does not pay much attention to the Republican platform, not to mention the Constitution. He is a pretty polished and experienced showman, but what about the heart of the man? Shouldn’t that be what matters? He is a politician. Is that what we need? NO!!! We need statesmen who revere the Constitution and the Republican platform. Lipservice Republicans are repulsive and devastating to our state and nation. This is what has put us in the shape we are in!
People, DO NOT fall for this empty show biz!
I took the liberty to put labels on his unconstitutional and socialist votes.
Take a look for yourself. I don’t think we want this man at the helm in our state.
Congress 105-1
1. Extension of  rural multifamily rental housing loans, guarenteed by the taxpayer.Please show me where this is listed in the enumerated powers of the Constitution. Either amend the constituion or abide in it, we can not continue to ignore it. HR 28
2. Build more prisons. HR 30. We need to use capitol punsihment or other deterances to keep people out of prison. We don’t have enough money to educate our kids, but we choose to lock people up to the tune of $100,000 per year. If a body can not control the disease within it, it will die.
3. $20 billion spending for socialist programs. HR5
4. Auto pilot federal spending. HR 1469
5. He opposes withdrawl from UN. HR 1757
6. Spending. FEMA, Peace keeping in Bosnia. Disaster relief. HR 1871
7. Most favored nation trading status for China. HJ 79
Congress 105-2
1. Opposed constitutional disclosure of intelegence spending. HR 1775
2. For Federal block grants. HR 1818. Where is in the enumerated powers? Either amend the constituion or abide in it, we can not continue to ignore it.
3. He opposed eliminating the national endowment for humanities. HR 2107
4. Opposed eliminating sugar loan subsidies. HR 2160. The Constituion does not allow for charity. Either amend the constituion or abide in it, we can not continue to ignore it.
5. Opposed eliminating of market access programs. Subsidising overseas advertising for big corporations. HR 2160
6. Opposed eliminating export subsidies. HR 2159
7. Opposed eliminating population controls and foreign aide. HR 2159
Congress 105-3
1. He favored VA/HUD appropriations. HR 2158 The constitution provides no provision for charity. People are to give freely if they choose. Government has nothing to give unless it takes it from someone first.
2. For foreign aide. HR 2159
3. For a global crime court. H.Con res 137
4. For dismissing Dornan election fraud. HR 355
5. For IMF Bailout. HR 3579
6. Dissanster assistance to Bosnia. HR 3579. If people or organizations choose to be charitable, great. Government has no provision for charity. Either amend the constituion or abide in it, we can not continue to ignore it.
7. For more federal involvement in public schools, stealing the local schools autonomy.HR 6
Congress 105-4
1. For super pork. HR 2400
2. Monkeying around with the 1st amendment. HJR 78
3. For food stamps etc. S 1150
4. Against 150 billion in tax cuts. HJR 284
5. Opposed Elimination of corporate welfare. HR 4101
6. For Agriculture subsidies. HR 4101
7. For funding welfare for women, infants and children (WIC). HR 3874 Again, no charity. Either amend the constituion or abide in it, we can not continue to ignore it.
8. For taxpayers subsidizing trade with China. HJR 121
Have ya had enough? There is more
Congress 106-1
1. Voted against Clinton impeachment article. HR 611
2. Voted for wild and scenic rivers land grabs. HR 193
3. For more AG subsidies. HR 1906
Congress 106-2
1. More support for China. HJR57
2. Opposed slight farm aide cut. HR 2606
3. Supported corporate welfare. HR 2606
4. Supported more foreign aide. HR 2606
5. Opposed transparency in campaign dislcosure in Doolittle campaign finance legislation.
6. Supported assult on 1st amendment and free speech. HR 417
7. Supported more Ag subsidies. HR 1906
8. More Federal Education subsidies, removing local autonomy. HR2
9. For Federal Education grants. HR 2
10. For labor/ HHS / Education spending. Where is does the Constituion address education? Either amend the constituion or abide in it, we can not continue to ignore it. HR 3064
Congress 106-3
1. For small business admin. corporate welfare. HR 3843
2. Opposed 2001 budget by conservative action team. This bill wanted $270 Billion in tax cuts.
3. Supported HUD expansion. HR 1776
4. Supported providing TV for “underserved areas. HR 3615
5. Supported funding for disabilities education. HR 4055. Note: Veterans need to be taken care of under the well funded department of defense.
6. Supported monies for more land grabs by Feds. HR 701
7. Supported permanent normal trade status with China. HR 4444
Congress 106-4
1. Automatic funding of the welfare state. HR 853
2. Opposed disclosure of intelegence spending to Congress. HR 4392
3. Supported the welfare state mother load. > 7% spending increase. HR 4577
4. Assault on the seconf amendment. June 21, 2000, Roll call 308.
5. More Ag subsidies. HR 4461
6. Foreign aide giveaways. HR 4461
7. More normal trade relations with communists. HJ 103
And another reply:
Let’s nip this one in the Bud. We don’t need another fake Republican!!
It appears the establishment Republicans would like us to believe that Rick Hill has this locked up.  AJ Otjen, who along with Mark French lost to Denny Rehberg in the 2010 GOP primary race for US Congress, has expressed her support for Hill publicly.  Otjen claimed her  reasons for supporting Rick Hill were the same reasons she supports Barack Obama.  Does Rick Hill share her Keynesian belief of spending our way out of crises? Sources close to Hill say he told them that even Montana Democrats were urging him to run because he was the most moderate in the race.  That doesn’t sound very “tea party” to me nor does his voting record.  If these rumors are true, Steve Daines who is hoping to unseat Senator Jon Tester may be wise to distance himself from Rick Hill.

Last week, my grandmother received a polling call asking if she intended to vote for Steve Bullock or Rick Hill for Governor in 2012.  She refused to answer.   The 2012 elections are nearly 2 entire years away and my grandmother is hopeful that there will be a clearer choice after primaries as she is tired of voting for the lesser of two evils.  I sure hope so too.

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11 thoughts on “Montana Conservatives Not Sold on Rick Hill

  1. And the “prominent Montana conservative” would be whom? Anyone with a dog in the race already? Like Ken Miller? Whose immature temper tantrum following his thumping in 2004 contributed to the successful election of Brian Schweitzer? I know from your previous posts that you support him, but you have to know that he really “messed in his nest” after that race and will be hard pressed to get the broad base of support it will take to overcome the bad taste he left after that. It tends to drown the impact of your passion when you quote an anonymous source without at least divulging any conflicts of interest. Same goes for the other “prominent Republican”. Given that list, your source seems to be somewhere to the right of Attila the Hun, or at least bedfellows with Ron Paul. A very passionate faction of the populace. Also a very small fraction.

    • What have I EVER said to lead you to believe I support Ken Miller? Just because I am not a big fan of Rick Hill? I know all about what happened in 2004, just because I’m new to blogging does not mean I am new to politics. I agree with you that the impact of my passion would be drowned if there was a conflict of interest that I didn’t divulge. That isn’t the case. Not one of the people in that thread is involved in anyone’s campaign for governor. As far as I know, none of them have expressed any support for any of the candidates. The thread is what it is…. I am not the only one to receive it. I simply passed along the info. Take it however you wish. The prominent conservatives in the thread do not have a “dog in the race already”, rest assured.

      • I think Aunt Lib is assuming that your anit-Hill rhetoric is an endorsement of Mr. Miller(Ken). One could assume that. It could also be an endorsement of Stapelton.

        At this point Montanafesto’s writings only indicated a dislike of Hill. Not an endorsement of Ken or Corey. A pattern may eventually emerge in her/his writings.

        There may also be a level of assumption that this blog is connected to a tea party member. Several Billing’s Tea Party members have expressed support for Ken.

        I think Auntie Lib(is it for Liberal of Liberty?) maybe connecting dots that are not there-yet.

        My statements are all assumptions as well… Isn’t this fun!

        • Emma, your assessment is correct. None of the assumptions that have been made have validity. If I was a Ken Miller or Corey Stapleton supporter, why on earth wouldn’t I just say so? I’ve said that I support Steve Daines, so it isn’t like I won’t make endorsements. I don’t necessarily dislike Hill either, but I find it interesting that his supporters are so quick to blame an email thread on one of the other candidates (which is ABSOLUTELY NOT TRUE) or my bias. I’d accept such criticism graciously if it had merit or if it actually addressed the actual issues. You better believe that if I had JBS scores on Corey or Ken, I’d be publishing them too. My “anti-Hill rhetoric” isn’t necessarily anti-Hill either- I simply posted an email thread. Fortunately for us and maybe unfortunately for Mr Hill, we can find information about him easier than the others. Provide me some dirt on Corey and Ken and I will address it. So far, I’ve heard that Stapleton uttered the words “Negro Caucus” and that Miller “messed in his nest”. If any of you have any earth-shattering information on these two candidates, by all means share it with me and I will be sure to publicize it. I’m not going to be the Montana Cowgirl of the right. My purpose is not to subtly feed readers any particular candidates and nobody is holding my puppet strings. As I support candidates, I will voice that support. Eventually my identity will likely be known and I hope by that time, Schweitzer and his goon brother are gone and I don’t have to worry about my safety.

          As for my connection to the tea party, there isn’t one. I’m not a member of any political party either. It is obvious that I lean right and often hard right but I have yet to make up my mind on this race. We have some time though fortunately. Also, I am a “her”.

          I find it rather disturbing that the Helena insiders are trying to force feed us Rick Hill- as if he is the foregone conclusion as the GOP nominee simply because he has name recognition and was a US house rep over a decade ago. What has he been doing since then- besides getting his faux law degree (which had to have been challenging to do online while battling blindness) and being a lobbyist, that is? I’m not sure blindly following the old establishment player is necessarily wise as I think this race may really surprise a lot of people. But that is just a hunch…..

  2. This race is going to be very interesting. I can say this. Ken, Rick, Corey, and any-other interested Republicans better build themselves up. Not tear others down.

    Candidates may have supported Brown in “04, but some supporters were nasty. Organizing to defeat him–regardless of their candidates endorsement for the General.

    • I still have my red and white “Bob Brown for Governor” shirt. My heart wasn’t in it, but after the primary, he was our guy. What can you do? I didn’t vote for him in the primary obviously but I did in the general and I helped with his campaign. I pray that this time around everyone can play nice- after all, we can’t all win. Although many are simply assuming Hill is our guy this time, perhaps he won’t be….. and will be play nice if that is the case? His blowhard comments about how he knows how to work a room, he’s a “fixer”, and that he was part of the TEA party before it was cool, are as convincing to me as a pitch from the POTUS (whose narcissism would provide Hill some competition) on the recession being over or how we will all grow to love Obamacare. I also think cheaters tend to be liars. Enough said.

  3. I supported Bob Brown, primary and general. He was a great choice; he had humility and thoughtfulness and character. He was saddled with Gov. Martz’s publicity negatives and the far right’s disappointment in not getting Miller through the primary. The party did NOT unite behind Brown. Instead, of a humble and thoughtful governor, we allowed a self absorbed amoral bully to be elected.

    Then Republicans refused to vote for Conrad Burns (had Burns gotten Rehberg’s votes in Gallatin alone, for example) and we ended up losing the Senate and having ObamaCare shoved down our throats. Another huge loss, whose effects will be severe and nation wide, because Montana Republicans turned on their own.

    Remains to be seen whether Rs in this legislature, now in control, will get things done for Montana, or once again their infighting will continue to have negative effects on our state.

  4. I owe Montanafesto an apology: I did jump to the conclusion that you were supporting Ken Miller based on the release of the text of the email from Mark French and his correspondent “Linda J”. I stand corrected and hope you will accept my apology. I was out of line and will try very hard to avoid such knee=jerk reactions in the future. In my defense, may I offer that I was still steamed by the write-in campaign by Lisa Murkowski in Alaska. I am deeply offended when the loser won’t give up and get behind the “will of the majority”. Just my thing, I guess. Again – I apologize.

    On the other hand, sorry Ken, but I was very active with the Brown campaign and firmly believe that your “support” for Bob contributed to the eventual result. I object to my opinion being categorized as a “lie”, however. It is an accurate and truthful communication of my perception of the actions demonstrated by your supporters, if not you personally. But I will make you a deal: If you win the primary, I will support you to the same level that you supported Bob.

    • Apology accepted. It didn’t offend me, I suppose it is natural to defend your chosen candidate when you feel someone is unfairly picking on your boy. What I find odd is that nobody defends Rick Hill- they just point fingers at others. I am anxious to see a forum with the three candidates. I know it is early, but I really just can’t wait.

  5. Point taken. So let me offer this tidbit for now in defense of Rick:

    There are dozens of different scorecards ranking members of Congress – everything from the ACLU to the John Birch Society (which is the sponsor of the Freedom Index quoted by Mark French above). It doesn’t take too much effort to find some organization that will portray the candidate in whatever light you choose to shine on him. For example the American Conservative Union gave Rick a score of 88% as compared to Ron Paul’s score of 82.4%

    The really important point, for me at least, is to talk to the candidate myself – ask the questions that are important to me and then evaluate those answers according to my own priorities.

    I’ve known Rick and Betti since before he ever ran for Congress the first time. I know where he’s coming from, and I trust him – because I do know his background, and his political philosophy. Rick has owned and run a successful business and is a very, very intelligent and astute businessman. He also has a tremendous grasp of health care and understands government budgeting issues as well as anybody I’ve ever met – except for possibly Dave Lewis. Do I agree with Rick on every issue? No, absolutely not! Do I think he has the “right stuff” to be the CEO of Montana? You bet your bippy!!!!

    And if you think Rick is a RINO – I want to know which one of you wants to kick me out of the Republican Party – because I’m more liberal on most social issues than Rick would ever be.

    Rick Hill is the best candidate in the race so far – and I don’t know of anyone more qualified who is considering throwing a hat in the ring. So Rick’s my guy – and I’ll be happy to defend him – anywhere, anytime.

    Thanks for accepting my apology, MT. I do tend to go on rants when I’m passionate about something :-P.

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