Are Montana Democrats Still Paying The Price For Their DNC Corruption?

by William Skink

The Democratic apparatus in Montana got their asses handed to them last night. Maybe Monica Tranel will eek out a victory at the PSC, but beyond her race (which got a boost from the Missoulian’s endorsement/retraction of Jennifer Fielder) there isn’t much for Democrats in Montana to be happy about.

Democrats in this state have never quite rebounded after providing money laundering services to the Hillary Clinton campaign during the last presidential cycle. Montana was one of 33 states involved in the Victory Fund scam. From the link:

In August 2015, at the Democratic Party convention in Minneapolis, 33 democratic state parties made deals with the Hillary Clinton campaign and a joint fundraising entity called The Hillary Victory Fund. The deal allowed many of her core billionaire and inner circle individual donors to run the maximum amounts of money allowed through those state parties to the Hillary Victory Fund in New York and the DNC in Washington.

The idea was to increase how much one could personally donate to Hillary by taking advantage of the Supreme Court ruling 2014, McCutcheon v FEC, that knocked down a cap on aggregate limits as to how much a donor could give to a federal campaign in a year. It thus eliminated the ceiling on amounts spent by a single donor to a presidential candidate.

In other words, a single donor, by giving $10,000 a year to each signatory state could legally give an extra $330,000 a year for two years to the Hillary Victory Fund.  For each donor, this raised their individual legal cap on the Presidential campaign to $660,000 if given in both 2015 and 2016. And to one million, three hundred and 20 thousand dollars if an equal amount were also donated in their spouse’s name.

Democrats notoriously failed to do any honest reflection after losing to Trump in 2016. Instead they doubled down on identity politics, launched Russiagate, attempted impeachment, and used seemingly every method to depose Trump from office.

In Montana, these efforts have moved the electorate away from Democratic support, and last night highlighted that movement. It doesn’t help that Montana Democrats have been absolutely terrible at developing fresh talent in this state.

So now we have Governor Gianforte, Senator Daines, Congressman Rosendale, SoS Jacobsen, AG Knudsen and Auditor Downing.

I don’t expect Democrats to engage in any honest reflection about their massive failures in this state. It was much more important for them to spend the last four years in open insurrection against the elected president instead of articulating a positive alternative to Trump’s rule.

If Democrats ever want to win a major political office in Montana again, a lot is going to have to change for that to happen.

About Travis Mateer

I'm an artist and citizen journalist living and writing in Montana. You can contact me here: willskink at yahoo dot com
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8 Responses to Are Montana Democrats Still Paying The Price For Their DNC Corruption?

  1. Big Swede says:

    One observation about last night in MT.

    If you have a “D” of “F” rating from the NRA you lose.

  2. Greg Strandberg says:

    Who’s in charge of the Montana Democratic Party? It’s a good question after last night. Bullock certainly is not, if he ever was. So that leaves us Tester and Sandra Luckey, and she’s so new I don’t think she controls anything.

    This is important, because who gets on the ballot? We think that anyone can run, and while this appears true, it’s not. The Dem Party and the elite that control it will make sure their favored candidate wins in the primary. We saw this clearly with newbie Graybill defeating experienced legislator Dudik. Dudik was the better candidate, but Dems didn’t like her, so primaried her.

    Same with the 2016 Victory Fund scam. That was all Dem Party HQ’s idea, with probably Tester signing off on it. They did this because of their desperate need for money.

    When I last looked at the MT Dem Party’s finances in June, they’d taken in $80,000 for the month but had spent $92,000. They had 23 people pulling down a paycheck ahead of the primary, and while I’m sure campaign workers are needed, do we need the top dogs that keep making bank?

    The only ‘old dogs’ still in the kennel are Nick Lockridge and Trent Bolger, who make $3,922 and $5,039 a month, respectively. Even the head of the outfit – Sandra Luckey – isn’t pulling in as much as Trent. She makes $4,536 a month.

    For years the Dems have paid those people huge sums…and for what – every statewide race lost?

    You’d think Dem voters – especially the committee chairmen in the various counties – would grow sick of this and complain and make it change.

    But they don’t. They’re too timid and afraid of upsetting someone. They’d rather lose each year than stand up to the real problem in their party, the leeches that pull away all the fundraising dollars for their high pay, eating out, and travel.

    The Dems in Parrty HQ are winning each year even if the people on the ballot lose. I’ve been saying this for years, but Dems are too proud to listen. Will this be the year they finally take the hard look at themselves that they need?

    I wouldn’t count on it. As we’ve seen repeatedly, anyone who offers any kind of feedback or constructive criticism of Dems is met with swift rebukes, backlash, shaming, and ultimately shunning.

    That’s the ‘party of the people’ for you.

  3. Tim A says:

    Your analysis is correct. Democrats had a historic opportunity to right the ship, but they are in a terrible position where they must play openly to their rabid base which expects nothing less than Republican heads on pykes, but also regular people who expect steady, thoughtful governance.
    Lee speaks to no one now. Gwen Florio publicly resigned over nothing. If anything, who the Missoulian endorsed was a great way to know who would lose!
    Republicans should be careful to not misunderstand their mandate. The best way to stay in power is to govern well. If they go too far down this right wing path, they’ll lose again. But as long as they look sane compared to the dialogues and screeching the Democrats have adopted as their primary method of discourse, they will stay in power.

  4. JC says:

    Unfortunately, I think the dem’s election loss in Montana has little to do with dems or the dem party. When you look at the 5+2 win (statewide and fed offices), you’ll see people reflective of Montanans. For many of us, that is a pretty ugly face that the state is publicly wearing now: creationists, religious zealots, people who don’t believe in the job they’ve been elected to do (or believe their duty is to dismantle the office), violent, ignorant, corrupt, etc.

    But when you watch the antics of all the white nationalists parading around the state, and all the idiotic right wing drivel blasted across social media, and the inability of people to reason or think independently, well then it makes sense. Montana’s leading politicians are now truly reflective of the voting majority, as ugly as they are.

    Makes it a lot easier to understand and deal with Montana politics when you realize that it just reflects voting Montanans. And it won’t change until Montanans change, or demographics change. No amount of party reform, or rising populist/charismatic politicians will change that.

    But I’m sure the dem circular firing squad in the state will find many victims… in all the wrong places.

  5. Eric says:

    You are way overthinking it – the Democrat candidates were all strictly second string.

    And Steve Bullock was a joke.

    He spent a year in Iowa, trying to get interest from the Dems in the presidential race, and Iowa sent him packing with less than 1%.

    Then the BIG question, would he run against Daines or not… and they brought out two Dems to try to ‘persuade’ him to run, Chuck Schumer, and Barack Hussein Obama, who both are unpopular here. What brainiac came up with that one?

  6. TC says:

    This is the thing! In the day Demos were about the working class – blue collar men and women that went to work and were content in their lives. But in 1992 Clinton changed all that – all of a sudden Demos turned white collar. Years went forward and Demos decided that if you didnt have a BA you were worthless and a hick. Years went forward and Demos decided that if you didnt identify non white and non- hetero you were worthless.
    Missoula Dems falsely believe that the world exists as their bubble – they believe that Missoula (and MT Dems) are Coastal Elites. Lord are they wrong!!
    Repubs win cause they can point to Msla Dems and say “Look”! Msla was all Demo all day on Tues. Was that MT – nope.
    As long ad Missoula represents the Demo party Repubs will win statewide.
    Or enough Blues can flee here and then (through amnesia) remake their former shithole

  7. TC says:

    Buddy, im ona roll now!!
    I grew up in a MT mill town. All our dads worked there and were Union. Because of that we were provided for and our Moms were at home. Everyone in the community with a blue collar and dirty, calloused hands were US.
    But then Demos (Clinton) decided he would woo the White collar ( kind of racist since most BOC are blue). That made all of us feel unimportant. All of a sudden Church, the Flag, hunting and Friday night football meant we were rednecks, uneducated, racists, anti bullshit Trans. Thats where MT Demos lost Montanans.
    We are not Repubs. But we are not getting talked down to by a recent Seattle relocator. We are not about being a Sanctuary City. And we are not about being “Hip”, “ Woke”, “Intersectional”, “Lit”,”Clapped” or any other bullshit social media cool thing.
    The next time Dems will matter in MT is the first time Dems in Msla arent the piece of rotten shit that is John Engen!

  8. Eric says:

    But how do you REALLY feel TC? 🙂

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