Intelligent Discontent

Terrible D.C. Journalism and Anonymous Sources Attack Governor Schweitzer


By the time you read this, you will have no doubt read the truly terrible piece in Politico by Manu Raju, which suggests that Governor’s Schweitzer will struggle to win over Democrats in Montana because of his personality and failure to support Democratic candidates.

It’s the epitome of lazy Beltway journalism, laden with anonymous sources and a clear misunderstanding of Montana.  It takes a journalist based in D.C. to write that Butte is a “copper mining town” or that Governor Schweitzer was somehow motivated by the ass-kicking he gave Roy Brown to campaign against him in a subsequent Senate race. It also takes a D.C. “journalist” to title his piece “Brian Schweitzer’s challenge: Montana Democrats” without mentioning that the last polling showed Governor Schweitzer has an 86% favorability rating in his own party. There aren’t too many politicians in the country who can claim those kind of numbers.

It wouldn’t surprise me if there are people in Montana who’ve had their feelings hurt by the Governor. People who tell the truth, bluntly and without hedging, often do hurt people’s feelings.  But to imagine that Democrats won’t wholeheartedly support Schweitzer in a race against the likes of Steve Daines is nothing more than Republican fantasy.

And the truth is, I want a candidate who will lose his temper when Republicans want to strip abortion rights from women across the country, when they obstruct healthcare for every American, and when they commit to enriching an already engorged class at the expensive of the majority of working men and women living in this country. A candidate who doesn’t get pissed off about that isn’t the candidate for me.

American politics could use a lot fewer blow-dried, message-tested ideologues who talk all the time without saying anything substantive. What we need are the kind of people who will speak their minds, sometimes bluntly.

This Democrat absolutely wants to see Schweitzer run in 2014—and I’m sure that I’m not alone, despite some anonymous sources in a piece from a journalist who probably couldn’t find his Butte on a map.

As a final note to the Democratic sources who found it necessary to run to a  D.C. journalist to tear down Schweitzer, why not have the courage of your convictions and give your names? It seems an awful lot like “bullying” to me to anonymously attack someone online.  Democrats certainly don’t have to like Governor Schweitzer, but they also don’t need to be doing dirty campaigning for Republicans.

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Don Pogreba

Don Pogreba is a sixteen year teacher of English, former debate coach, and loyal, if often sad, fan of the San Diego Padres and Portland Timbers. He spends far too many hours of his life working at school and on his small business, Big Sky Debate. In the past few years, travel has become a priority, whether it's a road trip to some little town in Montana or a museum of culture in Ísafjörður, Iceland.

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