A little less than a year ago, I put together a list of the best reasons Montana voters should reject Dennis Rehberg as he challenges Senator Tester. In the intervening year, little has changed—except that Representative Rehberg has become worse, authoring legislation and writing budgets that would do serious damage to Montana.
The list of reasons Rehberg doesn’t deserve to win another election in Montana is certainly reason enough reason to vote for his opponent Jon Tester, but one other piece of information bears repeating. All of these reasons to reject Rehberg are balanced by a record of no achievement. In over a decade as our Representative, Rehberg has no legislative achievement to speak of. It’s hard not to remember that his spokesman Erik Iverson, often called the incredibly insulting “Rehberg’s brain,” could only point to naming post offices when asked what Rehberg had done.
All of these reasons to reject Rehberg come from the last two years, since his last election. They don’t even touch his disrespect for Montana Indians, his calls to privatize Social Security, or even his penchant for travel misadventure, ranging from homophobic pranks to drunken horse riding.
This is the record of Representative Rehberg in just the past two years—a clear measure of a man who clearly lacks the resume, temperament, and judgment to be a U.S. Senator.
Tomorrow—why Montanans should enthusiastically support Jon Tester. Today, a litany of reasons why anyone but Dennis Rehberg should represent us.
MONTANA SPECIFIC ISSUES
- He voted against FEMA disaster relief funds just as Montana farmers and communities were facing devastating flooding across the Eastern part of the state.
- Rehberg has repeatedly questioned the work ethic of Montana farmers and ranchers.
- He voted to undermine the Clean Water Act while the Yellowstone River was filling with oil from a ruptured pipeline.
- He has refused to work on a bipartisan solution to the Post Office mess, despite having been a part of the Republican Congress which created a big part of the problem.
- He voted against helping the people of Libby who have suffered for decades from asbestos-related illnesses.
- He failed to persuade his own party leadership to hold a vote on the critically important Farm Bill, leaving on vacation after “writing a letter” about the issue.
ENVIROMENT, HUNTING AND FISHING
- He’s claimed that public land belongs to him, restricting access to hunters.
- He worked against Senator Tester’s Forest Jobs and Recreation Bill, not for any policy reasons, but to advance his own political agenda. Rehberg still has not proposed his own legislation on the matter.
- He pushed a provision which will double the amount of coal particulate in the environment.
- He voted to gut Social Security and Medicare.
- He wrote an ill-conceived amendment which would have ended Medicare Advantage.
- He wrote a budget that would cost Social Security $6 billion dollars a year.
- He supported a Balanced Budget Amendment which would have eviscerated the safety net for Montana’s seniors.