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)

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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.

Lindeen, Laslovich Shock Montanans w/ Skyrocketing Premiums

Shocked” – That’s how Monica Lindeen responded when she announced she would be imposing massive premium increases on Montanans next year.

She’s right – Montanans should be shocked that both her and her No. 2 Jesse Laslovich continue to bring us double digit premium increases year after year and still won’t back down in their support for Obamacare. These surging premiums are hitting our families and taking more money out of our pockets– impacting nearly 80,000 Montanans:

  • BlueCross BlueShield premium increases range from 40–108%; with the average premium increasing 62%
  • PacificSource premium increases range from 13.7–25.3%; with the average premium increasing 19.8%
  • Montana Health CO-OP premium increases range from 14–38%; with the average premium increasing 22%

It’s worth noting that these double digit premium increases are in addition to the 20-45% premium increases Montanans had to pay last year.

This financial strain on our wallets comes after both Lindeen and Laslovich made false promises to Montanans that they wouldn’t see “dramatic price increases” and that “people will have lower premiums.”

Their statements couldn’t be further from the truth and just goes to show how all-in they are for protecting Obamacare– not Montana families struggling under these skyrocketing premium increases.

Obamacare has been nothing short of a disaster for Montanans, and this financial burden is just unimaginable. Montanans were promised over and over again by Democrats that Obamacare would reduce premiums but that just hasn’t been the case.

It’s long past time we do away with Obamacare and bring Montanans health care reform that actually lowers health care premiums, improves quality, and expands coverage.

Obamacare Premium Increases Come to Montana

As open enrollment on the Obamacare exchange begins, headlines from across the nation read, “Premiums for Health Insurance Bought on Exchanges to Climb in 2016.”

Nowhere is this truer than in Montana where premiums will increase 20-45%.

Health care experts predicted Obamacare would not reduce premiums but President Obama and Democrats refused to listen. Despite President Obama’s broken promise that premiums would go down the reality is our families are going to spend more money from their paycheck for their government-approved health care plans.

As premiums continue to rise, Montana Democrats are not fighting to protect our health care. In fact, Montana Democrats just show blind allegiance to the liberal cause and refuse to stand with the 56% of Montanans who oppose Obamacare:

  • Governor Bullock admits our “small businesses and families pay too much” for health care but he’s too busy promoting the liberal agenda to stand against Obamacare.
  • Senator Tester won’t show a backbone to President Obama as he continues to defend this health care law he helped pass.
  • Monica Lindeen, the Democrat State Auditor, recently approved these double-digit premium hikes.
  • Jesse Laslovich, a Montana Democrat who’s running to succeed Lindeen in 2016, has spread misleading claims that Obamacare would reduce our health care costs and will simply follow in Lindeen’s footsteps of approving premium increases if elected.

Montana Democrats continue to press forward with their staunch defense and support for Obamacare despite the devastating harm these premium increases will have on tens of thousands of Montana families. Our families should not be burden with these premium increases. Our families deserve health care reform that will expand access and ensure affordable, high-quality care that won’t take more money from our paycheck each year.

It Only Goes Up, Up, Up #Obamacare

Around 40,000 Montanans will see premium increases between 20-45% next year because of Obamacare. Bottom line:The rates for 2016 are going up – a lot.”

Montana Obamacare Premium Increases:

Montana Health CO-OP: 30-40%

PacificSource: 30%

Blue Cross Blue Shield: 18-25%

When President Obama promised Obamacare would reduce premiums by $2,500 it was more than just a broken promise, premiums have actually increased by nearly $2,500 for Montanans because of Obamacare.

Working-class Montanans actually pay an extra $189 every month for their health care plans because of Obamacare– taking $2,300 from our paycheck every year.

And, more money will now be taken from our paycheck with this recent 20-45% premium increase.

You can’t count on Montana Democrats to fight back against Obamacare or protect us from this financial hardship because they don’t stand with the 56% of Montanans who oppose Obamacare.

Democrat State Auditor Monica Lindeen– who currently regulates the insurance marketplace– said, “She was pleasantly surprised to see rumors of dramatic price increases under the Affordable Care Act are not happening in Montana.” Not true.

Democrat Jesse Laslovich– who’s running to replace Lindeen as State Auditor– supports Obamacare and said, “People will have lower premiums.” Again, not true.

Senator Tester continues to support Obamacare, well, because he’s always willing to do Obama’s bidding.

As for Governor Bullock, when given the opportunity to protect working-class Montana families from Obamacare refused to join a lawsuit challenging Obamacare.

Bullock’s loyalty to President Obama and the Democrat Party has been rewarded. The Democratic Governors Association (DGA)– which Bullock now runs and raises millions in dark money– wired nearly $3 million to a group who ran political ads supporting Bullock’s 2012 run for governor.

One of the political ads touted Bullock’s efforts defending and protecting Obamacare.

Will more money be funneled into Montana from the DGA because Bullock supports Obamacare? Time will tell …

Most disturbing of all, Bullock has amassed a $3 million dark money war-chest (and counting) for his work at the DGA, and it’s only a matter of time before Bullock’s dark money floods the state to support his re-election campaign.