Add Melissa Romano to List of MTDEMS Dodging Debates

Another candidate forum, another Montana Democrat not showing up …

Melissa Romano, the liberal candidate running to be the next State Superintendent, declined an invitation to show up at a candidate forum later today in Seeley Lake.

Yet, another staunch liberal who can’t handle the public scrutiny of their record.

Let’s begin with Romano’s involvement with a national Common Core working group, where she gave full authority to un-elected bureaucrats and special interest groups in Washington D.C. to write our kids’ curriculum and to decide how and what subjects should be taught in our schools.

Romano even goes so far as to describe herself as a ‘huge Common Core advocate.’ [5:55]

She speaks ‘enthusiastically’ about Common Core and its top-down approach – taking away local control to give more control to DC bureaucrats and the special interests.

Romano fundamentally opposes local control in our education system saying she ‘disagreed with the idea that school districts need more local control.’

Her belief system tells her that Washington D.C. bureaucrats and special interest groups know what’s best for our kids – not Montana parents, teachers, and schools.

These D.C. special interests dictating our Montana education standards are spending six figures to prop up Melissa Romano’s “Made-In Washington D.C.” campaign.

To top it all off, she has promised to continue current State Superintendent Denise Juneau’s legacy. Well, given that over half our students are NOT proficient in math and English that’s not a legacy anyone should be proud of.

Melissa Romano can’t put Montana students first when she’s a cheerleader for Common Core, opposes local control, believes a top-down approach is the solution to our education challenges, and is funded by D.C. special interest groups.  

Melissa Romano now joins Monica Lindeen to the list of Montana Democrats who won’t show up to debate their Republican counterparts, and, don’t forget that Governor Bullock decided NOT to participate in gubernatorial debates in Eastern Montana and the Flathead. These Montana Democrats are dodging debates because they don’t want to be held accountable for their failed record and for their refusal to fight for Montanans.

Helena IR: Monica Lindeen’s No Show At Candidate Forum ‘Disrespectful’

The Helena IR did not have kind words for Monica Lindeen today saying it was ‘disrespectful’ of her to not show up at a candidate forum after confirming she would be there. The editorial board noted that Monica Lindeen didn’t even bother to give much of an explanation and her handling of all of this ‘didn’t do much to engender the public’s trust.’

Monica Lindeen made the wrong call when she went back on her word and bailed on the candidate forum just like she made the wrong call when she said our health care premium increases were ‘too low’ and demanded the insurance companies go back and ‘raise their rates.’

Perhaps that explains why Monica Lindeen bailed on the candidate forum … She didn’t want to face the public scrutiny for the skyrocketing premiums she’s pushing onto us: The average premium increase next year for BlueCross BlueShield: 58.4%; Montana Health CO-OP: 30.7%; PacificSource: 27.6%.

An IR View:
Skipping candidate forum (09/23/2016)

Thumbs down

After confirming she would participate in Monday’s public forum in Seeley Lake, Montana Secretary of State candidate Monica Lindeen failed to show up.

This was supposed to be the first time the Democratic candidate and her Republican challenger Corey Stapleton would publicly face off. But partway through the forum, which also included a hodgepodge of candidates for several other offices, we received word that Lindeen couldn’t make it without much further explanation.

Admittedly, part of our frustration is personal, as one of our reporters made the 200-mile trip from Helena to Seeley Lake and back specifically to write about Lindeen and Stapleton, only to come back empty-handed. But we believe this was also disrespectful to the people of the Seeley Lake area who took the time to plan and attend the event, as well as all Montanans who were expecting to see news coverage about what she had to say.

Some scheduling changes are unavoidable, and Lindeen may have had a very good reason to skip the forum at the last minute.

Still, the way this was handled didn’t do much to engender the public’s trust.

Lindeen No Show At Debate After Calling Premium Increases ‘Too Low’

Monica Lindeen exercised bad judgement when she was a no-show at Seeley Lake this past Monday despite agreeing to face off against Corey Stapleton in a candidate forum on the Secretary of State’s race.

Her abrupt decision to cancel on this debate comes days after she called Montana’s health care premium increases ‘too low.’ Coincidence?

Too low says Monica Lindeen when the average health insurance premium increase for Montana Health CO-OP is 30.7%! For Pacific Source it’s 27.6%!

Here’s what happened: When Montana Health CO-OP and Pacific Source originally submitted lower premium rates, Monica Lindeen rejected their rates saying she ‘found their rates to be too low.’ She wanted higher rates for their health care plans and ordered them ‘to raise their rates.’

Talk about bad judgment: Pushing higher premium rates onto Montana families.

It’s not just that Monica Lindeen pushed for higher premiums this year – For the second year in a row now she has given Montanans double digit premium hikes!

These skyrocketing premium increases year after year come even after she gave her word that Obamacare would not bring ‘dramatic price increases.’

Monica Lindeen misled Montanans about Obamacare and the false promise of lower premiums, and she stands by Obamacare with unwavering support as Montana families are left struggling with their ever increasing premiums.

Montanans are the ones paying the price for Monica Lindeen’s bad judgement. Let’s retire her in November.

Jesse’s Pay for Play: “Not Picky” Where Money Comes From, Premiums Hiked

Jesse Laslovich has taken somewhere between $30,000 – $40,000 from the lobbyists, insurance, and financial industries he’s supposed to be regulating.

Conflict of interest? Well, Jesse doesn’t see anything wrong with this pay for play.

Listen to his own words: He’s “not picky” where his money comes from.

Click HERE to Watch

Jesse Laslovich takes campaign donations from the health insurance companies he helps regulate and then authorizes higher health care premiums, meaning the insurance companies take more of our money while we’re left on the hook to pay for these higher premiums.

It’s a win for Jesse Laslovich. It’s a win for the health insurance companies. It’s NOT a win for the tens of thousands of Montana families who now have to pay these higher health care premiums.

Next year’s premiums have now been finalized and are even higher than what was originally announced: Montanans will face premium increases between 27% to 58%.

Have a BlueCross BlueShield policy? Your average rate increase will be a staggering 58%!

So, when Jesse Laslovich is asked: “How can you be an advocate for Montanans when BlueCross BlueShield is giving you campaign donations?

The answer: He can’t. Jesse Laslovich is bought and paid for by the insurance industry.

Jesse Laslovich is too busy cozying up to the insurance companies so he’s fighting for their interests – not your interests. Jesse is no advocate for Montanans and electing him as our next State Auditor means more premium increases and more financial hardship for Montana families.

FACT CHECK: Bullock’s Lies Come in Five

Can you believe how dishonest Governor Bullock’s new ad is?

(1) Bullock falsely casts himself as a believer in “fiscal discipline and accountability.

  • Under Bullock, government spending has increased by over 25 percent – $800 million – while the gross state product grew by only 9 percent.
  • Clearly, Bullock forgot about his administration’s $1 billion accounting error last summer – and how no one was held accountable or lost their job because of it.
  • Don’t forget how the company that employs the wife of Bullock’s budget director secured a $23 million government leasing contract without a competitive bidding process or looking at alternative sites.

(2) Next, Bullock beats his chest for working to “balance the budget every year.” 

  • Governor – It’s a constitutional requirement and it’s carried out by the Montana Legislature!
  • Thank goodness we do have a balanced budget requirement because without it he’d never balance the budget!

(3) Bullock then makes outrageous claims about Montana’s “$300 million rainy day fund.”

  • There’s no $300 million rainy day fund in Montana. It’s all but gone – reduced to maybe $100 million – and with Montana’s negative economic growth since the end of last year and declining tax revenues, it’s entirely possible that we will run a deficit next year.

(4) Bullock also goes on to praise himself for “no new taxes.” 

  • Well, Bullock VETOED tax relief bill after tax relief bill that would have returned money to Montana families – he kept your hard-earned money so he could increase government spending and bring more government into our lives.
  • One of the bills Bullock VETOED would have lowered tax rates for ALL Montanans by eliminating special interest tax credits for his fringe environmental cronies – who coincidentally are now funding his campaign.

(5) Finally, Bullock’s living in a liberal’s state of denial when he says he “cracked down” on wasteful spending.

  • Under Bullock, state spending has increased a whopping $800 million over the last 4 years!
  • Yes – $800 million! Proving he is no responsible steward of Montana’s fiscal health.

Those are all of Bullock’s five 5 outrageous lies in just one TV commercial!

Montanans deserve better. VOTE Greg Gianforte for Governor. Greg’s proven record of success and creating Montana jobs will bring real leadership to the Governor’s office.

Bullock, Hillary No Friend to Gun Owners

The outcome of this election will truly define what happens to our Second Amendment Rights.

Hillary Clinton supports Obama’s gun-control regulations, said a nationwide firearm ban would be worth considering, and believes the Supreme Court is wrong on the Second Amendment.

Hillary’s views aren’t just her own; they are shared by the Democrat Party.

Here in Montana, Governor Bullock is neither the strong leader you can trust on the Second Amendment nor will he protect and defend our right to keep and bear arms.

At every turn, Bullock proudly stands with Hillary Clinton and the Democrats’ gun control agenda – not with Montanans and our Second Amendment Rights:

  • Bullock received a “C” rating from the NRAa “C” rating!
  • Bullock and Bloomberg’s anti-Second Amendment groups are working together in Montana to advance their gun control agenda and take away our firearms.
  • Bullock VETOED several common sense gun rights bills over the last 4 years.

Most disturbing of all, Bullock VETOED a bill that guaranteed under the 10th Amendment that Montana would never have to enforce a federal firearm or ammo ban.

Bullock VETOED this bill not once but twice – and called it “completely unnecessary.”

When you VETO a bill that protects our Second Amendment Rights and call it “completely unnecessary,” that really says all you need to know about where you stand on this issue.

Let’s show Bullock where Montana stands on the Second Amendment this November.

Remember to VOTE for Greg Gianforte as Governor, he is endorsed by and received an “A” rating from the NRA and Greg is someone Montanans can always trust to fight for our Second Amendment Rights.

Jesse Laslovich Calls for Single Payer Health Care

In a recent interview on Face the State, Jesse Laslovich, the Democrat (and socialist) candidate for State Auditor, announced support for a single payer health care system.

There’s going to have to be a candid discussion about single payer. It just is a broken system. If I’m the Auditor I want to be part of that conversation.”

Jesse Laslovich Calls for Single Payer Health Care System

Click here to watch.

Jesse Laslvoich’s calls for a single payer health care system comes even after he admits that Obamacare is a “broken system.”

Obamacare has brought Montanans double digit premiums increases year after year so for Jesse Laslovich to believe that complete government control is the answer to our health care problems shows just how out of touch and radical his agenda would be if elected as the next State Auditor.

Let’s look at the harm Obamacare is doing to our families …

Next year, Montanans will see average premium increases between 20% to 62%.

That’s just the average premium increase. If you have a BlueCross BlueShield plan you could see your premiums increase as high as 108%!

Just this past year, Montanans saw premium increases between 20% to 45%.

Obamacare has financially devastated our families. Frankly, it’s unimaginable that Jesse Laslovich believes a single payer health care system will fix this problem.

Montanans need Matt Rosendale for State Auditor because he will fight for policies that actually lower our health care premiums, bring price transparency to the marketplace, and improve the quality of care we receive.

MTGOP Chairman Asks Montana Supreme Court to Enforce Campaign Laws

Helena, MT – Chairman of the Montana Republican Party Jeff Essmann today requested the Montana Supreme Court to direct Secretary of State Linda McCulloch and Commissioner of Political Practices Jonathan Motl to perform their duties as required by law and remove Roger Roots, a Libertarian party candidate for the position of Montana Secretary of State, from Montana’s 2016 general election ballot after he failed to file his business disclosure report and properly file campaign finance reports as required by law.

The Supreme Court needs to uphold the integrity of the vote and Montana’s campaign finance laws, and enforce the law if these two officials will not,” said Chairman Jeff Essmann. “Whatever the reason for their failure to comply with the law and ensure that all the business disclosure forms and campaign finance reports were properly filed, the Secretary of State and the Commissioner of Political Practices have permitted a name to appear on the ballot when the law was not followed.

Roger Roots failed to file his business disclosure report and failed to timely file his campaign finance reports as required by the Commissioner of Political Practices (COPP). On the matter of his business disclosure report, Montana law 13-37-126 (1) states: The name of a candidate may not appear on the official ballot for an election if the candidate or a treasurer for a candidate fails to file any statement or report as required by 2-2-106 or this chapter. Regarding his campaign finance reports, Roger Roots was contacted multiple times by the COPP to correct this issue but still failed to file timely reports. Despite being in violation of the law, both the Commissioner of Political Practices and the Secretary of State’s office approved Roger Roots for inclusion on the ballot.

While Commissioner Motl says the COPP received Roger Roots’ filed business disclosure form in March 2016, it has been unable to publicly produce this document. Instead, COPP admits they solicited, received, and posted Roger Roots’ business disclosure form dated September 6, 2016. However, this is past the March 2016 statutory deadline to qualify for the ballot.

On September 1, 2016, the General Counsel for the Montana Republican Party notified Secretary of State Linda McCulloch in writing that Roger Roots was unlawfully certified for the 2016 ballot and asked McCulloch to notify all county election administrators of this violation and to order them to desist in their efforts in preparing and printing ballots. McCulloch has not responded to Essmann’s request since the letter was submitted.

Essmann asks the Supreme Court to take both immediate injunctive action by issuing a temporary restraining order (TRO) and by ordering Linda McCulloch and Jonathan Motl to perform their duties mandated by law.  Lastly, Essmann requests the case be given the highest urgency, with local election administrators set to print ballots in the coming days and weeks and with overseas military ballots required to be sent out no later than September 23, 2016.

Zinke Proven Leader for Montana

Helena, MT – Chairman Jeff Essmann released the following statement tonight after the Congressional debate between Congressman Zinke and Denise Juneau in Billings:

“Congressman Zinke proved he has the leadership and experience to best represent Montanans. He sets aside politics to do what’s right for Montana and that makes him the strong and courageous leader we expect in our elected officials. Whether serving as our Congressman or as a former U.S. Navy SEAL, Congressman Zinke will always protect, defend, and fight for our Montana way of life.”

“Denise Juneau showed she would rather stand by her liberal values than do what’s right for Montana: Denise Juneau brought us Common Core – with results showing that fewer than half of Montana students are proficient in reading, writing and math – she voted against creating thousands of high-paying Montana jobs, and she believes in restricting our constitutional right to keep and bear arms. The only thing Denise Juneau proved tonight is that she doesn’t represent our Montana values.”


Bullock’s Actions Far Worse Than Hillary’s: Deleted ALL Emails

It has now been revealed that Governor Bullock destroyed all his official state emails while serving as Attorney General similar to how Hillary Clinton deleted her emails while serving as U.S. Secretary of State.

Actually, Bullock’s actions are far worse than what Hillary Clinton did. She erased some of her emails. Bullock erased all of them.

They no longer exist” – That’s the official word from the Governor’s office when a freedom of information request was filed asking for Bullock’s email communications.

By deliberately engaging in the destruction of every last one of his public documents, Bullock violated the Montana Constitution and his oath of office:

The Montana Constitution clearly states, “No person shall be deprived of the right to examine documents or to observe the deliberations of all public bodies or agencies of state government and its subdivisions, except in cases in which the demand of individual privacy clearly exceeds the merits of public disclosure.”

This raises some very important questions: What’s Bullock’s motivation behind deleting all his emails? What’s he trying to hide or cover up?

In May, it was reported that Bullock and his staff “were using personal email accounts to conduct state business” a la the Hillary Clinton way.

Using a private email account, Bullock was able to conceal official state business from the public that would otherwise be subject to an information request if it had been communicated from his government email account.

Deleted emails …. Private email accounts … Bullock and Hillary’s actions run counter to the honesty and trust we expect from our elected officials.