consultants are sandburs



Monday, May 22, 2017

While awaiting the Montana vote this Thursday, the rally Tom Perez neglected to attend. Biden too.

Start at min 40 for the tail end of the Elizabeth Warren intro by the union official who served as the Sanders Massachusetts campaign head in 2016. Before that much of the video touches local issues.

Somewhere in there once Warren has begun and progressed in talking, the future of the nation's young being the future of the nation seeps through so inescapably that Perez, had he been there, would have had an epiphany as if on the road to Damascus. But he was not and it is likely his eyes remain closed and his mood beholden. Yet presume he has a learning curve of some degree and that it presently hovers at a point aware that the real and cognizant grassroots are known as necessary for the Democratic Party to have a moral future. Or any future whatsoever.

You Don't Need an Oracle to Know Which Way the Wind Blows

No balloon drop. No Podesta participation. Back in his counting house or wherever. Write off Podesta and the lobbyists and beltway elites and do hope that Perez is not, ultimately, a Podesta at heart.

Putting faces and names into play helps. Which way does Ossoff face? After Montana, that will be the question.

____________UPDATE____________
There is unneeded confusion of where Elizabeth Warren is on healthcare, is she a Single Payer advocate, coverage for all as a right, or less? This undated item suggests a hedge. This is important because she's a potential 2020 presidential candidate, and would be a good one.

This video is interesting. In a townhall reported end of March, this year; i.e., prior to the Our Revolution rally noted as the primary focus of this post Warren said, "Yes," and explained the political reality of what Obama put together and got passed without saying it was all that was feasible with Dem majorities in both houses and Obama in the White House because of Dem foot-dragging because too many of the corporatist Dems were bought and owned by Big Pharma and Big Insurance. A majority of seats did not mean a majority to fix a crazy-bad system where special interests in the best reform would be rendered less special.

Watch that last linked video, and Warren is clear as to if the Republicans put it all on the table by being Paul Ryan clones up and down the line, then it's time to push single payer. This other short video buttresses the Warren position. It's time to move on it now, Paul Ryan handed over the chance to go the full hundred yards and score a touchdown. No better opportunity in the future is likely.

And this is why Jon Ossoff should not be allowed to do a straddle. On board or otherwise, but declare.

One thing the insurance discussion ignores, they get healthcare coming and going. Besides being temple gatekeepers at present, they also insure malpractice, and suck profits from both ends of things.

Without knowing the Canadian system on the malpractice question, a guess would be something similar to workman's comp exists to prevent the money waste from that end of things too.

That and a stronger way of pulling licenses to practice would be needed when bad actors now get priced out of practice by the insurers, so that there is no actual and effective public mechanism to police. Something sucking fewer dollars from the system would be needed to replace trial lawyer skill being the determinant of who continues in medicine and who is riffed.

Warren doing the Our Revolution rally in her home state with Bernie pretty much seals her as a supporter of Single Payer. Whether as a practical matter she'd go with improvements to the status quo short of that, if feasible, is a hypothetical so long as it seems the Democratic Party might be cajoled and primaried into no other policy posture, or not, for the 2018 elections. If the DC Dems believe they can dance "Trump's a disaster, our turn" and win without guts to go Single Payer, they will be gutless and stay bought since the present DC Dem view seems to define a viable candidate as one who can raise big money traditionally, not as Bernie and Quist have done, grassroots vs. big donor.

If Quist wins the Montana seat, and Ossoff declares strong on Single Payer and wins, the die may be cast. If Ossoff keeps a waffle stance and loses, will that trigger any unanimity? That's murky.

Last, what in the hell is Tom Perez up to? He's painfully clear on refusing to commit to single payer; and his DNC mandate is to take corporate money, so, what's his story and why is he not being pressed by the press to clarify? Why is he being cut so much slack?

Does any reader know, is Jon Ossoff's LSE Masters Thesis "on trade relations between the United States and China" online anywhere?

The thesis is mentioned online multiple places, e.g.,Wikipedia's Jon Ossoff entry.

Nobody seems to care enough about what the thesis said to have put it online, or am I wrong and it is online?

Perhaps Ossoff should post the document as a pdf on his campaign page. That would help inform the nation and the world on who he is, where he's been.

It appears a book review written and published online by LSE is his sole writing online. It is interesting as it stands with readers urged to follow this link. It appears he made no effort at publishing his thesis as a book; while being critical of the book he reviews as banal in part, better in other parts. Trade policy being a key issue, a hope would be some clarity. His issues page is what might be called circumspect.

He's a waffle on Single Payer at a time when waffleship on that defining issue may be unhelpful. In facing the runoff he has an opportunity to sharpen his positions. With national Dem money flowing in before the runoff to the tune of around eight million dollars, there must be something there the donors like, but it is difficult to discren beyond a hope at capturing a Congressional seat previously held by a Republican.

______________UPDATE______________
Not wanting to leave a suggestion that too many of Ossoff's policy positions are equivocal, it is important to flag what is not:

Jon will introduce legislation to reform campaign finance laws and reduce the toxic and corrupt impact of money in politics. He is opposed to the Citizens United decision allowing unchecked, anonymous money in politics.

While there is some suggestion that a Constitutional amendment may be necessary, legislation can constrain the reach of a bad thing. The unequivocal commitment is good. Also -

Jon will defend women’s access to contraception and a woman’s right to choose and fight any legislation or executive action that would allow insurance companies to discriminate against women.

Planned Parenthood provides essential preventative and reproductive health care services like cancer screenings, STD testing and low-cost birth control to millions of American women. Jon will defend Planned Parenthood in Congress.

Phrases missing from his issues page: "two states" and "wall street" which seem omissions of intent and not neglect.

He articulates no tax reform intent. The word "income" is used only once, the word "disparity" is absent, and "income" is mentioned apart from any disparity considerations. Those are disturbing things to see.

Then on the plus side:

Jon will oppose legislation or executive action that undermines Americans’ access to private communications and strong encryption.

A strong position on net neutrality would be welcome, but is absent at present. He posts:

Jon’s mother is an immigrant who became a small business owner, an American citizen, and a champion for women’s rights. America needs a strong border policy that protects American citizens and American jobs. We should welcome those strivers who, like our own forebears, seek the opportunity to work hard, play by the rules, and build better lives in America.

Jon believes it is a violation of core American principles to slander entire religious groups and that it’s unconstitutional to ban anyone from entering our country on religious grounds.

That is a clear stance on immigration, but it could be less circumspectly worded.

OpenSecrets info on PAC spending in Georgia's CD6 was not found per a cursory search. Interesting OpenSecrets pages:

Here, re Ossoff and others.

Here, re "Health Care Overhaul." Impediments to progress can be identified, top of list downward. Following the money is maddening, with McConnell and Hatch deserving "For Sale" tattoos on the forehead. Schumer and Wyden being high on the list is informative. Bipartisanship?

___________FURTHER UPDATE___________
Super waffle:

Jon will oppose unnecessary military intervention overseas and will only support the use of force where US national security is at stake.

From that you'd also expect wife beaters and child molesters would be disapproved; since "unnecessary" is as much a weasel word in that context as any, but he's compelled to want to please everybody by fudging to indeterminate obfuscation.

Does he favor goosing up the military-industrial budget, or lowering it? That statement is about as bad as it gets. It is an entirely content-challenged thing that might as well have been omitted. It is gratuitous and offensively so.

Vote Goat.

An earlier post asked, this YouTube answers.

Team Quist has a series of new short "ads" you can view on YouTube. GOTV.

GOTV

(Does that stand for Goats Ought To Vote?)

Sunday, May 21, 2017

One of the Quist - Sanders rally events is on YouTube, starting at about 18:00 into the post, Bonnie Quist addressing the event. [UPDATED]

This link.

And if you want a follow-up more good persons, Nina Turner in California speaking in favor of the California Single Payer effort. [UPDATE: And she does a shout out acknowledgement of the nurses. The nurses rock.]

Good persons want to do good things, and have hope for good results from other good persons taking the time to vote.

Go ROB. Go Single Payer, California.

_____________UPDATE_____________
Having posted for readers before watching, so everybody could watch, a screencapture from within the event as it streamed here at home:

Win or lose, this is important to Quist and his team, and to the nation. Grassroots support allows it, while the Republicans are shipping in boxcars of money to undo righteousness; and may they fail decisively.

___________FURTHER UPDATE_____________
Bernie's part of the rally brings to mind the Truman story. Somebody at a speech yelled, "Give 'em Hell, Harry." Truman looked back and replied, "I am only telling the truth, but they think it is Hell." Bernie speaks the truth, and it is clear why the corporate interests in the media and the Democratic Party wanted to marginalize and silence his message.

Quist needs to win, everyone in the nation needs it, leading into 2018 and reform then and after once the Congressional elections in that year are held and won by progressive candidates wherever they run.

_____________FURTHER UPDATE_____________
A screencapture of the rally's opening speaker, Bonnie Quist, talking heritage and hope:

A woman's place is on the podium speaking truth.

Seeing her passion and eloquence and care, I have to ask, when Donald Jr. and Pence were in town touting Gianforte, was Susan Gianforte any part of things?

Was she even there? Does anyone know what she looks like? Or what if anything she might have to say for herself or the family? Or was it just the boys on the bandstand? Greg and guests having a say, Susan irrelevant to a state's political processes? Any reader who saw that stuff, what happened? Also, the post below this, do note no live rally highlight mentioned, instead the bolded text of a Gianforte email exhortation to his loyalists, "If I'm not on the airwaves until Election Day, my opponent will win!" Any bets that "on the airwaves" will be anything but continual unremitting unrelenting mud-slinging because positives about Gianforte are few and far between?

Watch and see. Or don't bother, just vote Quist.

________________FURTHER UPDATE_______________
The Bernie part of the rally is separately posted, but if you only watch that you are shortchanging yourself of a fuller understanding of the Montana election, and only seeing part of the story. No full session post without sandwiched commentary was found, the one above, again, at about minute 18 into it is where Bonnie Quist leads off the rally speakers. For those with the shortest of attention spans, a 90 sec. excerpt of Bernie's speech.

The Young Turks noting the obvious, but worth watching, YouTube, here.

______________FURTHER UPDATE______________
In comparing Quist and Gianforte healthcare policy, to the extent Gianforte says anything in Montana you can trust as opposed to being truthful in calling money sources back east, bear this in mind from Minnesota's largest circulation daily newspaper, Strib, online here:

UnitedHealth Group is once again at the top of the list in the Star Tribune’s annual survey of largest publicly traded companies in Minnesota. The company’s 2016 revenue of $184.8 billion represented an increase of nearly 18 percent over the previous year, while annual profit of $7 billion was up nearly 21 percent.

UnitedHealth’s health insurance division, UnitedHealthcare, competed on exchanges in 34 states during 2016 and posted $850 million in losses. It was the second year of significant red ink.

It is difficult to not recognize that record earnings and record profits is not hurting. They want more. Merit and need are irrelevant, they want more. They oppose the exchanges arrangement because it cuts against record profits, the record could be higher, and the healthcare needs of people can be damned as far as they care. They love Paul Ryan because his Gestalt is theirs, theirs is his, and they share a symbiotic symmetry made in Hell.

______________FURTHER UPDATE______________
Guardian US-news homepage, feature item, the Quist Montana rally. The mood of positive message and policy, not sitting and saying "referendum on Trump" will be tested. The notion of sit and diddle and let Trump be Trump did not come out well Nov. 2016. People care for more than a balloon drop. People can be sensible in aggregate, sometimes. Hope this time. Guardian noted Republicans "on the airwaves" because in person, what?


Ending item paragraphs:

Quist faces an uphill fight. His opponent, Gianforte, has built a significant advantage on the airwaves with nearly $5m in outside money. National Democrats were slow to take the race seriously and have only become involved in recent days.

The question is whether Quist and his supporters can take advantage of discontent with Republican healthcare reform as well as Trump’s falling approval ratings. If they can, there could yet be an upset in Big Sky Country.

[link in original] The final paragraph, yes the Ryancare obscenity is coarse, but Trump was seldom if ever mentioned. It's positive policy that carried the day's discussions. Running against a ghost living at all via outside money, little to no national Democratic Party presence, Quist has an agenda parallel to Bernie's which did carry the Montana Democrats' primary in 2016 when Bernie, getting no media attention, ran against the balloon drop millionaire-career-politicians spousal pair with the foundation and speech fees. And superdelegate rigging.

_____________FURTHER UPDATE_______________
Rob Quist's complete rally speech has been posted separately on YouTube, this link.

____________FURTHER UPDATE______________
Forbes, dated May 21, "Paul Ryan Could Lose A Key Trumpcare Vote In Montana Special Election," actually talks about the two special election seats, in ending paragraphs.

Strib local reporting dated May 21, "Minneapolis Fed begins exploration of inequality issues with two-day conference --
Dozens of leading researchers are in Minneapolis to identify ways the central bank can assist their work. By Evan Ramstad Star Tribune." Early paragraphs:

Starting Monday, dozens of the nation’s top economists and researchers on poverty and inequality will participate in a two-day conference at the Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis to explore that paradox — and whether the nation’s central bank can do anything about it.

The conference is the first public event of the Opportunity and Inclusive Growth Institute formed late last year at the Minneapolis Fed. The bank’s president, Neel Kashkari, had encountered the poverty paradox as a politician in California and an official in the U.S. Treasury Department.

“I’m really having trouble reconciling what seems to be progress on the ground at a micro level and seemingly a total lack of progress at the national level,” he said in an interview last week.

Berniecrats know the problem is one of legislative capture by wealth, at the federal level, and the cure is new personnel in both houses of Congress. The Fed is run by bankers, and that's a big part of the problem.

Not Montana specifically, but generic.

Having put myself on the Gianforte emailing list, for the quaint purpose of seeing how much and varied BS can be put between click boxes for donating in different amounts, there is a striking generic similarity party-to-party.

Latest, Greg, writes me, as "Friend," saying [contribution boxes omitted]:

My opponent and his Washington allies just placed a $1 MILLION advertising buy for the last six days of this election! The Left knows exactly how important this race is and will stop at nothing to shut down the conservative movement coming out of Montana!

This election has just days left and we can't keep this seat and add to our conservative majority in the House without you!

Our nation's future is resting in the balance based on what happens in Montana. If the Democrats are able to pull off a win in this race, it will fuel their efforts to win many more races moving forward.

Friend, I know that I have asked you for your support before, and I can't tell you how much I appreciate all the support you have given me until now, but we're running up against a major deadline.

If I'm not on the airwaves until Election Day, my opponent will win!

[bolding in original] Now, knowing Greg can cut another million buck loan to his effort any time he damn well pleases, the likelihood of Montanans being bombarded by his stuff "on the airwaves" during TV watching is 100% regardless of whoever is chump enough to give free money to a multimillionaire.

What amazes, is they are out there. They are being shorn of money that could go to family needs. Money diverted from family needs for a multimillionaire who supports throwing folks off of health coverage and calls back east to lobbyists with the message, great the healthcare thing has been pitched over the transom to the other house of congress because now you can hone in on cutting my taxes which is what in a nutshell I am about.

Not only that. I got a same-day email purported to be from Trey Gowdy, calling me "Friend" and stating in part:

I know I reached out to you last week about this race in Montana – but things have escalated and I need your attention once more please.

Democrats in Montana and across the country have not only increased their focus on Montana, but their fundraising efforts as well.

With only days left until voters hit the polls in Montana (Thursday, May 25th), every action we take now to help Greg Gianforte defeat liberal Democrat Rob Quist will make a difference.

Your donation – no matter the size – will make an impact and could be what pushes Greg to victory.

This election is going to come down to the wire. Please Friend, let's make history together and help Greg cross the victory line.

[bolding in original] Well, I choose friends carefully, and beyond that, a Republican elected to replace another Republican who has been given a cabinet appointment by a third Republican is not actual "history" to me, but then after watching some of the Clinton-email hearings it's clear already Trey is a bit loose with truth.

Puzzling, Trey's message has the footer, "Paid for by Greg for Montana." There are ways that can be interpreted, but the guess is the Greg thing did not actually pay Trey a bribe to send an email, and while it says it's from Trey, I suspicion somebody else actually sent that email. And lo, using a Gmail detail button, this:


It is confusing that Trey would be checking in with his friends, using an info@gregformontana.com generic email address. Even Podesta was more careful in his emailings. Perhaps there is some mendacity afoot and Trey did not really email me.

That leads to further inquiry, results of which I am sad to report. Earlier -


Ted, how did you get my email address? Oh, right, it's that info@ guy at work again, so Ted's likely not really my "Friend."

How much that saddens me, only the angels can know.

Now what baffles me most, in this emailing which I now suspect as all being from info@gregformontana.com and all "paid for" accordingly per footers: WHERE IS NANCY PELOSI? She is not mentioned. I have been led to believe Greg is running against Nancy Pelosi, his ads on YouTube say so all the time, and it baffles me why his emailings and surrogate things are loath to mention his obvious real opponent.

Nancy is getting a free ride and Greg's friends in emailing should really touch base with the campaign staff to learn they should be bashing Nancy Pelosi in order to have paycheck-to-paycheck minions so fearful that they'd give their grocery money to a multimillionaire who on drop of a [cowboy] hat can lend himself another million of his wealth, allowing supporters to buy food for their families.

Now since readers expect me to be truthful, neither Ted, Trey, nor Greg are friends of mine, and with Greg running against Nancy Pelosi she'd get my lesser evil vote; but if Greg were running against a true progressive valuing serving the people of Montana more than lowering a millionaire's taxes, somebody like Rob Quist, then I'd be more enthusiastic about the Dem offering.

Nancy's not my friend either, since she's another multimillionair from being in politics, similar to the Clintons, and happily I see she's being primaried. But I digress -

Aside from that WIN ROB, WIN! That about sums up days between now and Thursday, May 25, with an afterthought,

  GOTV ROB, GOTV! 

All for now. And in all honesty, ROB is not a "friend." The truth is I have never met the guy, all I did was contribute money to help his campaign, as others should, and I expect ROB, instead, picks his friends carefully.

___________UPDATE___________
This is a "for whoever cares" addition to things. The emails detail boxes screencaptured above were

"mailed-by: returnpath@bluehornet.com"

which inspired this websearch, leading to this webpage, this A rating with the BBB, and a whois. So Greg's right in there with Kentucky Fried Chicken using an email marketing service in San Diego. Neither Trey, Ted, nor even info@ were actually mailing me Greg-stuff. A marketing operation in San Diego was. Am I saddened? Wouldn't you be?

A screencapture from here


..................................

So if a voting Monanan [which I am not] and not voting Rob, my vote would be to write in: bluehornet

They've the imagination and moxie Greg as a person lacks. On their big top page screaming banner, "INTUITIVE, POWERFUL TOOLS" Greg lacks the intuitive part, while pursuing "110:1 ROI ON EMAIL SPEND." That 110:1 is something a monied portfolio geek can relate to, even with Russian holdings and cement company holdings not quite up to that ROI.

Saturday, May 20, 2017

MONTANA MUSINGS: Not a million reasons behind Gianforte's run to repeal Obamacare. Just short of 800,000 in fact, each a dollar.

$756,813 is the actual calculation. If Greg Gianforte were to dedicate that tax break, no strings attached, to battered women shelters and other protections, making it a tax wash, he'd have grounds to be taken seriously on his pledge to serve Montanans banter. So far, not so. And that pledge about taking corporate PAC money? How, really, is suggesting in his lobbyist call that such money be directed to his benefit different from taking it, for his candidacy, not into his pocket which was never the issue. That tax break is not chump change, and Gianforte in his call to the east coast was supportive of moving the healthcare repeal onward, but his focus WAS taxes. That's in the transcripts online, multiple places.

This opening HuffPo screencapture.


In fairness to Gianforte, running for Governor and spending more of his own cash there than in this contest suggests tax lowering may be a secondary aim, the thing being an ego trip since he's got all the money anyway. Either way, the vote Thursday will decide whatever the strategic aim, does he go or does he stay? Flip side, eight hundred grand is a mighty big secondary aim, if not primary. Quist is free of any such pecuniary stake in the outcome. Which is in his favor, given the tax cut dimension of the call Gianforte made to money lobbyists back east. One question is did he put the million dollar loan to his campaign into place after that call, or before, and did the call actually get more cash into his campaign or into a PAC he'd touted as an alternate GOTV outlet? The Montana press should be able to get answers on that follow the money line of inquiry, since it is always relevant.

UPDATE: The linked HuffPo item indicates:

Shane Scanlon, a spokesman for Gianforte’s campaign, did not respond to a request for comment on the law’s financial benefits for the GOP candidate.

Why is that? It is not a beating-your-wife kind of gotcha question. It is something most voters should know and should want to know. Silence in that situation properly leads to a conclusion that following the money is not liked in the Gianforte camp, for some undisclosed reason.

FURTHER: The remainder of the HuffPo article describes the phone call facts and implications, and ends on this positive Quist GOTV outcome:

Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), whom Quist backed in the 2016 presidential primary, is speaking at events for Quist in Missoula, Butte and Billings on Saturday and in Bozeman on Sunday. Quist’s campaign had to move the Missoula rally to the 7,500-capacity Adams Center arena because of the high level of interest in attending.

If anybody knows what having to move a session to a larger venue means, it is a musician who has toured. Quist is experienced. Bernie also is experienced in filling venues and overflow crowds. Bless them both.

(that quoted pararagraph has a link to here)

UNDER THE RADAR RAMSEY NEWS: Former town official moved from Wayazata to Maple Grove in 2015.

Strib reporting on a Wayazata growth project nearing completion mentioned:

The Promenade of Wayzata replaces Bay Center Mall, a 1960s-era shopping center with sprawling parking lots. The largest redevelopment project for the city in scale, size and investment, it was controversial when a divided City Council approved it in 2008.

Some residents opposed it for its size and scale. But city officials said it would create a mass of retail, address housing needs and provide a walkable area that one said would become “the most lavish pedestrian environment in all the Twin Cities.”

“It was a blighted property [that was] underutilized,” City Manager Jeff Dahl said.

Construction stalled for two years during the tail end of the Great Recession, starting in 2012. Now public sentiment may have shifted, said Steve Bohl, the developer of the hotel and a condo building called the Regatta.

“Now that we’re here, a majority of the people have accepted it and most are delighted and excited,” he said.

The five blocks include 326 units of senior housing — from apartments to assisted living, memory care and nursing home units — 88 condos and 26 apartments, 119,000-square-feet of retail, and parking.

Nelson during Wayazata tenure.
"City Manager Jeff Dahl" rang a wait-a-minute bell. Heidi Nelson had moved from Ramsey to become city manager in Wayazata, so a where now question was in mind. Websearch reached a LinkedIn page and reporting here, here, and here (source of the image).

Ramsey residents may recall Nelson's time working with Darren Lazan of Landform on the failed Town Center project in Ramsey during the real estate downturn times of 2007, and onward; when the McDonald's promise of a Town Center site was spawned but never, since, materialzed. There was council turnover.

MONTANA SPECIAL ELECTION: Marijuana - desperate candidate reaches for non-issue?

A NORML post led to this websearch. What is interesting (in stuff about what should in all good sense be decriminalized nationwide as Washington and Colorado have done), is that truly damning evidence is among the returns:


Because Missoulian headlining spanned two issues the damning notice about Gianforte's wanting government overreach and intrusion, his way, got in the search retrun list. Absent running two issues together, the GG policy offensiveness, given the search terms, would have not been returned in the search. However, women's health assistance is not something the government should have its nose into, beyond funding it as a public good, and another thing the public is coming around to realize from experience and thought, is that marijuana use is private and should properly be fully removed from government interference.

The Republicans are troglodytes and should be scorned for it. Ask Rand Pual. He scorns the intrusion of criminalizing marijuana. As a doctor and as one concerned with personal privacy and -

- smoked weed the man did -
What Ginaforte idiot thinks this will be a last moment decisive issue? Ask Norm Coleman, (the chair of the PAC running the hate-Quist advertisements Montanans suffer), whether he in his pre-GOP college bullhorn-agitator days ever tasted the weed. Don't expect a straight answer, but ask.

Gianforte is two-faced on the Republican effort to wreck healthcare from where it is when sanity is single payer; and gee Greg, Rob has used weed? Who are these people? What they are is no mystery. A clear and present danger, but who, besides Greg, the Trump kid, and Pence trying to get their leaky balloon airborne? You'd think they'd have the hot air, but they're grounded.

Quist is such a better choice the surprise is that he's not seventeen percentage points ahead.

Job outsourcing facilitation for big money, and the litigation of Gianforte to impede public access to a stream matter. Weed should not. From NORML's item cited in opening:


It seems a bottom line that Ginaforte has no real respect for privacy or needs of others, wanting big government but in his preferred ways, while wanting to go to DC to cut his taxes and be closer to the lobbyists he now phones. His phone call, basically stripped to its nub, great that healthcare stuff's been moved, now let's get to important stuff, cut my taxes.

MONTANA SPECIAL ELECTION: In reporting the Quist campaign's raising five million dollars, The Hill pointed out Ossoff raised more for the Georgia special election.

This link, closing two paragraphs:

According to Federal Election Commission reports, Gianforte has raised more than $3.3 million from late January to early May.

Quist’s $5 million haul is a large sum for a House candidate but is shy of Georgia Democratic nominee Jon Ossoff’s unprecedented $8.3 million, though he has raised more since his pre-primary fundraising report. Ossoff looks to deliver an upset against GOP nominee Karen Handel in Georgia’s special election.

Item second paragraph:

Quist’s eye-popping fundraising haul includes more than 200,000 individual contributions the campaign said was raised in 85 days.

No breakdown of contributor numbers was given for either Gianforte in Montana, or Issoff in Georgia.

_____________UPDATE_____________
The cited amount Gianforte "raised" appears to include a million bucks he "loaned" his campaign; this link.

At a bet, many Montanans would think, if I had a discretionary million bucks, I might ego trip as a candidate for something. Or even spend it wisely. Charity for the destitute and homeless, or such.

___________FURTHER UPDATE___________
Behind and shamefully so with regard to "unity" tours or theme songs, talk being cheap, etc., this 5/18/2017 HuffPo link, this excerpt:

Still, the GOP is leaving little to chance as Trump’s popularity sinks lower every week. The top three outside spenders in the election — the Congressional Leadership Fund, the National Republican Congressional Committee and the Republican National Committee — had collectively shelled out more than $4.7 million in independent expenditures as of May 17 to oppose Quist and advocate for Gianforte.

The Congressional Leadership Fund, a super PAC, has led the spending with outlays of nearly $2.3 million. Some of the group’s most generous contributions in the last month, according to FEC data, have come from the American Action Network, a politically active nonprofit that doesn’t have to disclose its donors; RAI Services Co., a subsidiary of tobacco conglomerate Reynolds American; and Steven A. Cohen, the founder of Point72 Asset Management. Together they’ve given the super PAC almost $3 million in contributions.

Groups backing Quist have spent a fraction in comparison; the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee has outspent the others at $340,000. Other PACs on Quist’s side are the Progressive Turnout Project and the Planned Parenthood Action Fund, which had made independent expenditures totaling just under $200,000 and about $120,000, respectively, through May 15.

Of the two candidates, Quist has been the more successful fundraiser — though not at first.

[links in original omitted]. The national Dem money machine pumped up Ossoff in Georgia, but is primarily MIA in Montana. Ossoff is a former congressional staffer, establishment type that way, and Quist backed Bernie in 2016.

Unity? Well, Ossoff has his funding sources, and the hope is he prevails in his runoff election. But with a progressive candidate being wholly ignored in Kansas and now largely so in Montana, by national money, progressives have to be careful in how limited stagnant-wage family resources are spent. Without in any way finding fault with Ossoff, he has his funding and no need for my contributing beyond an 'atta boy' for the effort and for gaining a substantial plurality in the first round but not the majority needed to avoid a runoff. While sincerely hoping he wins the runoff and adds a non-Republican vote in House organizing, it is a separate candidacy from democratic-socialism progressive orientation, by its own choice, and Clinton fundraising in 2016 proves corporatist money abounds.

DCCC in Montana did produce one voiceover negative TV ad against the Gianforte candidacy. https://youtu.be/VktOQQgXpmg

Coordinating between a PAC and a campaign is supposed to have a Chinese Wall and no comingling, so the Quist campaign had no connection to the item's production or content. While not appearing untrue, it is not affirmatively boosting Quist as a candidate of vision and merit, but rather is aimed otherwise. The ending footer of the item on YouTube, as run on TV by DCCC, strictly disavows any tie between DCCC and the Quist campaign, via "solely responsible ..." language. That is proper form. The suggestion is not that the ending footer disclaimer language is abnormal or improper. Just that the Chinese Wall requirement exists and was honored.

Quist is a candidate of vision and merit.

Friday, May 19, 2017

Poll results from neutrally worded questions.

Results, here. Covering story, here.

“Declining to prosecute Secretary Clinton for recklessly mishandling and transmitting national security information will set a terrible precedent,” Mr Ryan thundered.

The headline is a mid-item sentence from The Economist, here.

Neat tweat. From a GOP fellow traveler [radio host]. We await Brunhilde's aria.

This link. Thread comments, as always, are ambiguous and divided. HuffPo linked there, from here, and in the latter item noted voter mood and fundraising reality (links are as embedded in original):

Gianforte waffled on his support for the health care bill that the House passed this month, telling wealthy donors he backed the deeply unpopular bill, then backtracking to voters who could lose their health insurance or be forced to pay higher premiums. Quist hammered Gianforte for flip-flopping and raised more than $550,000 from donors contributing on average $25 each over the course of just four days.

The links are each worth following, but lengthening the post by quoting is unnecessary. One point only, image from here,

Trump ties. Would a cowboy hat be expected here,
or might some hand-in-glove fellowship carry the day?

Actually, one quote, after his lobbyist money-shake conference call:

Gianforte told a local CBS affiliate in Montana that he would have voted against the bill, which allows states to waive rules protecting people with pre-existing conditions from being turned away or charged astronomical rates.

“I’ve been very clear, to repeal and replace ‘Obamacare’ we must have guarantees here in Montana that rates will go down, rural access will be preserved, and people with pre-existing conditions will be protected,” Gianforte told KPAX. “If I didn’t have that assurance I would have voted against it.”

Gianforte has accepted $2 million from the Congressional Leadership Fund, which only supports candidates who back the AHCA. His campaign did not immediately offer a comment Wednesday morning.

The personal histories of Gianforte and his opponent play handily into Democrats’ health care narrative. In 1991, Gianforte, a software entrepreneur, settled a lawsuit with a former employee who’d accused Gianforte of firing him for having multiple sclerosis. By contrast, Quist, a musician and son of ranchers whose wife is a real estate agent, spiraled into debt after undergoing a botched surgery that counted as a pre-existing condition, disqualifying him from health insurance. He was forced to sell off part of his family’s ranch and access Social Security early to afford follow-up surgeries and avoid bankruptcy.

[links omitted] The drift there, the cowboy hat would be absent from joining the pictured troika; the man rich from software enabling customers to outsource jobs, more likely from looking up from GOP back benching to the Ryan leadership, seeking membership where, the Financial Services Committee, portfolio concerns and all? (It's where dear Michele Bachmann finagled membership; and her sophistication is less than Gianforte's.)

___________UPDATE___________
Only a marginally related thought, related to portfolio holding and not presently trading, does Gianforte hold any Exxon stock, what with the Exxon headed State Department and sanctions against Russia presently standing between Exxon and a half-trillion dollar oil deal? Which would boost share price, presumably.

MONTANA: Quist could win. Gianforte could win. But Montana will not be anybody's referendum on Trump and the Russians. If anything beyond local and two people each with a different background, it would touch the Ryancare debacle, public land mistrusts, and Trump and his populist campaign rhetoric followed by a Cabinet of Dominionists and billionaires, (in the DeVos case, the most egregious, a foot in each such distasteful camp and aggresively so). It will be soon after a corporatist Dem presidential candidate showed insufficient rust belt traction and tune-time "Stronger Together" rang as false as Podesta brother lobbying and Robby Mook as a cracker jack consultant. Screw the balloon drops. Get to fixing the wealth/income distribution fairer and however needed, kill Citizens United.

A Gianforte loss would teach the Republicans the super-wealthy have to remain back pulling the puppet strings not running themselves so that Scott Walker grifter-conscience types remain their hope. It would teach the Dems too. There are people hungering for fairness and they will be a massive grassroots mechanism to wrest control, if there is to be one. Berniecrats and corporatists can watch; and a message about any unity tour in which the wrong group captured DNC leadership will be apparent. Expect Quist to at least do as well as the Kansas special election candidate the DC corporatist money managers hung out to dry, totally and to their detriment.

Keith Ellison likely is watching this election, although he has first and foremost duties remaining in the House, in session or out. Not that Minnesota's CD5 is insecure, but he has to keep his promises to serve the district well and fairly. Because he is a man of conscience.

UPDATE: The grassroots enthusiasm and contribution support for Quist will be the paradigm. Since the DNC was taken as it was apart from grssroot sentiment, the message is fund the candidacy that resonates with you as to message and the appearance of actual integrity; and let Hiam Saban fund his thing, Goldman Sachs funding theirs - both parties. Routing money through the DNC, after Debbie Wasserman Schultz and after what was done by the establishment to Ellison even with Schumer and Reid having endorsed Ellison is a lesson. They are allies on organizing, on gaining a majority, but not on reform, be it Single Payer or otherwise. Be sensible but open to reasonableness. Push but do not alienate. Show who belongs in the driver's seat, and wait for it to sink in. Public servant is a term insufficiently used or honored, but one with a message.

FURTHER: Let the Republicans give their money to Norm Coleman and Vin Weber. They have money to waste. We do not. We need care and discretion in spending, just as in buying groceries with stagnant-incomes the problem. If things can be done right, we may end up sending the plutocrats to Pluto.

And tell the Russians: We don't need any more Boris Yeltsins here. The ones we have we need to retire.

This is big. GRASSROOTS and not back east phoned up astroturf. Twenty-five bucks a pop on average x 200.000 = a paradigm.

From the Quist campaign website news; arrow added:



UPDATE: Much, much, much, very much more strength and impact on the healthcare issue; this Quist ad, vs. this one. The first is Quist making a promise you can trust, from the heart, from experience. It is worth watching twice.

____________UPDATE_____________
How much again did the Tom Perez DNC pony up grudgingly, to not look indiffent to grassroots zeal? There needs to be some soul-searching back among the DC corporatists; unity tour or not, unity is a two-way street and the whole world is watching.

The magnitude of the Quist grassroots popularity has to be viewed through a unity lens in Georgia.

Ossoff strength of character on issues, the party establishment, and grassroots would be needed to win there. The establishment has to learn how to appeal to a more than willing grassroots multitude.

It's the agenda, stupid.

What's the difference between a waffle and a clear disavowal, (besides butter and syrup)?

This item:

Gianforte has previously distanced himself from Wilson, telling The Huffington Post through a campaign spokesman last fall that he was “unfamiliar with Mr. Wilson’s writings outside of their mutual involvement” in the Christian school organization that reports more than 200 members.

Asked twice Wednesday if he would have contributed to Rose’s campaign if he had known as much about his views as he does now, Gianforte would not say, but did denounce racism and discrimination generally.

“I will say clearly that hatred is wrong and it has no place in politics or government. I completely reject it," he said.

Gianforte said his contribution to Rose’s campaign was simply one of several such donations to Republican races across the state. Since 2000, he and his wife have made more than 500 contributions in Montana elections. Of those, 134 were made to support 114 Republicans on the November 2016 ballot.

A $170 contribution from Gianforte and a matching one from his wife are among about a dozen such personal donations from Republican leaders or state legislators to Rose’s failed legislative bid. State campaign finance records show most of that money came to the Rose campaign after the Southern Poverty Law Center and Anti-Defamation League reports gained traction on social media in Montana.

___________UPDATE___________
Missoulian, "A closer look at Gianforte jobs claims":

Nevertheless, Gianforte dumped his vaunted company to his competitors, world giant Oracle, for $1.5 billion. Oracle merely bought one of their small-time competitors out here in Montana and folded them into the corporate stew of over 187 affiliated companies in its portfolio. Gianforte was only happy to walk away with the cash.

Shortly thereafter, Oracle moved over 100 of Bozeman’s RightNow Technologies' “high-wage” jobs to Texas — for cheaper labor. One RightNow employee described the debacle to the Bozeman Daily Chronicle this way: “As soon as we walked in, they told us to shut off our cell phones. None of our management was there. There were these three gentlemen in suits we had never seen before who had flown up from San Antonio.” So much for caring about the working class folks in Montana, Gianforte. You sold them out.

It gets worse. Oracle, according to www.glassdoor.com, created a workforce climate in Bozeman that was a “corporate hell.” More interesting, from a campaign point of view, is the claim that Gianforte is against gun registry. With a full measure of hypocrisy and irony, Oracle designs gun registry profiles embedded in its software and sells them to government agencies. Gianforte, meanwhile, still receives money from Oracle and numerous Oracle executives have contributed to Gianforte’s campaign — more hypocrisy.

Wasn't it a Dylan song, "You Don't Need an Oracle to Tell Which Way the Wind Blows?"

This is important. Not only for itself but as an example of what the future of the Democratic Party might be, if they'd pass up big money and merely accept and nurture what is there for the taking. It is their's by abdication of the other party toward Dominionism and nativist Angst.

This ABC News link. The Angst of the young will be more lasting, by way of the Reaper if nothing else. The 1% have no Angst. They've Greed alone, or with ingrained nastiness, Paul Ryan coming to mind.

_____________UPDATE______________
Worth a quote, that report, mid-item, states:

Despite its image among outsiders as solidly GOP territory, Montana has fiercely independent denizens who regularly elect Democrats to statewide races, although those Democrats usually pledge allegiance to the rural creed of supporting gun rights and being willing to buck the national party. While Donald Trump won the state by a 20 percent margin, Montana voters also re-elected their Democratic governor, Steve Bullock, who beat Gianforte by 4 percentage points.

Quist is running as a populist and political outsider who supports strengthening President Barack Obama's health care law, not repealing it. He backs abortion rights, same-sex marriage, pay equity for women and lower interest rates for college loans — themes that resonate with younger voters.

Earlier this month, Quist enlisted actress Alyssa Milano and a scene-stealing pet goat, both of whom were unleashed upon the grounds of one of the state's largest college campuses to help get out the vote. Milano, whose erstwhile TV show "Charmed" is a cult favorite among some college students, roamed dorm halls to register students for absentee ballots and shuttled some to the county elections office to cast ballots ahead of the special election.

In Gallatin County, home to Montana State University in Bozeman, elections officials reported long lines of mostly young people waiting to cast votes after Milano's visit.

When Bullock chose May 25 to hold the special election — the earliest date possible — he likely had the college vote in mind, so early absentee voting would overlap with the final weeks of the school year. That gave his fellow Democrat a window, albeit a narrow one, to rally college students before they dispersed into Montana's hinterlands for the summer.

"Democrats know they have to swing a lot of those middle or independent voters, so young voters are incredibly important. It should be a pretty coveted group of people because they aren't always decided," said Rachel Huff-Doria, executive director of Forward Montana, which helps get out the vote on college campuses across the state.

As he did in his bid for governor, Gianforte has largely ignored college campuses. His campaign has focused on rallying older, established voters to cast ballots.

So what about the goat? A word search got only the one hit. The St. Paul Saints independent league baseball team by tradition has a pig as a mascot, this year's pig being named "Alternative Fats." Somebody has to bring balls to the home plate umpire, and the mascot's been tasked.

But now, that said, what about the goat?

FURTHER: Perhaps the goat has some presence in the TV item Charmed, but it's likely a devil in some details since the IMDb page text is goatless.

It leads to an even bigger question for the less immediate future. Will the goat be going to Georgia, given this headline?

____________FURTHER UPDATE______________
While Quist is active toward the May 25 election deadline, including the May 20-21 sessions with Bernie [see link from top sidebar for detail], some criticize Ginaforte for no schedule no appearances. But it's not only hunker in the bunker, he's standing ready to sermonize.

____________FURTHER UPDATE______________
Dorm doorknocking. Great. Fine. BUT WHERE'S THE GOAT?

Thousand worder.

Among other media outlets, LA Times headline, "Trump lashes out, calls Russia investigation a 'witch hunt'." Not only that, but magnitude appears to matter to the man, opening paragraph of the item stating:

President Trump could contain his anger for only so long — about 14 hours — before lashing out on Twitter on Thursday to protest “the single greatest witch hunt of a politician in American history!”

The link there noting Salem, Mass. notwithstanding, the thousand word argument exists - and - the Russians, their cronies, the bugbear.

Thinking of the big picture.

Thinking of forming a "National Raffle Assoaition," so people will send me money by mistake. Earlier in the alphabetic listing, which for the people expected, might matter.

Breitbart indulges hyperbole. Which is not a good thing. It displays partisanship and encourages a warped perspective.

Headlined, "Donald Trump: ‘I Didn’t Get Elected to Serve the Washington Media’ by Charlie Spiering, 17 May 2017, the esteemed outlet's report goes on in the body of the item to this:

“Look at the way I’ve been treated lately especially by the media,” Trump said. “No politician in history, and I say this with great surety, has been treated worse or more unfairly.”

There are Kennedy, Lincoln and McKinley who come to mind. They each lacked a Mike Pence buffer. Nor was the media in any of the three instances to blame. Lincoln may have had the worse time with mixed reviews.

Two predecessors got impeached, neither discharged from duty. One left in shame, chip on shoulder toward the media too.

Caesar comes to mind, "in history." Two English Kings, one French, lost their heads. Obama got a fat book deal and speaking fee, so if Trump's notion of history is short term, he has an argument.

Thursday, May 18, 2017

MONTANA SPECIAL ELECTION: It's like one stop shopping.

A follow-up on the ethics-campaign finance rules breach allegation lodged by a third party against the Ginaforte campaign. See earlier post.

It is troubling that Gianforte was caught in awkwardly handling a straddle, but ultimately it will not be the decisive factor in the election outcome. It likely will be mainly unknown to the majority of voters.

 source

Click it to read, go to the source item for the complete story, reach the final screencapture paragrph and understand the headline.

This Roll Call screen capture explains the Gianforte straddle, its awkwardness, and presents a suggestion of disarray if in crisis. It being a minor thing, but wanting things two ways while having made a "no corporate PAC money" promise to voters does touch upon the character question. Showing a willingness to bend a pledge is not good form.

That said, again for a perspective, a personal one, I'd happily swap Mike Pence and Greg Gianforte in positions, Pence the candidate and Gianforte being the unfortunate choice as VP, even given that each appears to be a Dominionist.

Gianforte appears less a brick, less a stuffed shirt, and something other than a career politician of the theocratic bent. He's done other things (not as diverse as Quist and seeming less a humanist).

It is feeling so on a Pence-Gianforte swap even despite funding of the laughable museum. But surely not forgetting the laughable museum.

From a Berniecrat perspective Quist seems the better man. Being an independent because the Democratic party is too Clinton "Third Way" corporatist to embrace, I am not a centrist independent by any measure. I am an indepencent of the Bernie kind, he being willing to caucus with the Dems, but holding a distance from centrist/corporatist taint.

Gianforte stinking of money, and Quist having had to clear debts because he's of the people economically as well as philosophically is not the decisive part of my measure, the economic part of it alone, but "of the people" is strong and "of the 1%" determines it for me.

Send a 1%'er east, that's his constituency no matter how he says differently. Send one of the people back east, and that's his constituency. It comes down to that. Trust in background, with the character of neither candidate perfect nor defective, but surely Quist's being the more interesting. Putting trust in Quist's more varied background, the leavening it should add while being less dollars and cents oriented, is what, as a Montanan (which I am not), would set my vote.

May the best candidate win. Saying so but thinking Quist best.

Montana and nurses.

The Nurses Union was instrumental as a part of the Ellison DNC chairmanship effort; their position on single payer being unequivocal; e.g., this link.

Rob Quist has the AFL-CIO endorsement.

The Montana AFL-CIO website has a left sidebar link to the Montana Nurses Association website. They do not endorse in the Congressional Special Election. Perhaps they are 501(c)(3) and are constrained by that.

This item, published online within a news outlet's op-ed publishing and not the nurses, per se, and offered under signature of the executive director of the Nurses Association is unequivocal. Please read it. It is unclear whether it is a statement of an individual, with a title, or an authorized statement on behalf of an association, so presume the first because the latter would be expected to be explicitly stated.

The implication is that Montana nurses parallel the national organization in support of single payer.

Rob Quist is the candidate embracing that aim.

This is important in my view because the nurses, more than any other healthcare professionals, are in direct daily contact with patients and see their situations and needs face-to-face. They, as the professionals they are being dedicated to healing that way, are uniquely positioned to know, collectively, what would be best for patients, as a class.

And they back single payer. Unequivocally so.

They know what's best, and are reported as active in advancement of single payer at the state level in California, which has a population and economy equivalent to that of all of Canada.

The California Single Payer effort is of great national importance. While not posted of much here, expect it.

For now, the parallel in nurse recognition and support of single payer, and Quist support for the same, should carry much weight in thinking nationwide, and specifically in the next few days in Montana.

These professionals are without any ax to grind. They are not like a pharmaceuticals industry trade association. They have consciences. They are not a money-grubbing force caring primarily for their profits and pay and privilege. They face sacrifice and hard work daily, and are dedicated, it being a service of conscience and not a privilege.

PAY ATTENTION TO THE NURSES.

Robert Mueller

When they got rid of Nixon the first step was to replace Agnew.

Some parallels would be nice to see.

There is this websearch, and a particular item in the Mueller resume. Arguably there is a credibility dimension there that many ignore.

Another general is standing muster, Flynn this time. And it's not a paramour, but the Russians and Turks and money.

What did Mike Pence know and when did he know it. He told the world Flynn did not discuss sanctions pre-inauguration with the Russians. Did he lie about what he knew? Recall he pitched strongly, recently, the transparent lie about grounds for sacking Comey. Rosenstein had a hand in the transparency. He authored a three page memo used as an excuse. A figleaf. Now it appears he's cutting distance between himself and efforts. That entire theater act seems unseemly.

One has to have faith and hope that Mueller is smart enough and of sufficient integrity to lift every possible rock on Mike Pence because the last thing this nation needs is a rabid theocrat making national decisions as top dog in the White House.

I like Trump better there, Russians or not, over Pence.

A notion now that succession is Pence first, Ryan next, makes me want to vomit. The nation deserves better.

Opinions may differ. I may well be misjudging Pence as a man, but his online defense of the patent lie floated for sacking Comey is not a confidence builder. Nor his record.

To me the Agnew parallel has merit.

The fear, when Agnew was scrapped, Nelson Rockefeller was the brutal truth imposed on our nation.

Some parallels have little appeal.

Rockefeller and his "biographer" remain a memory.

Handling of Petraeus remains a memory. Of the "Who is Robert Mueller" nature.

......................................

There obviously is much reporting. RT links to an official DOJ page,

https://www.justice.gov/opa/pr/appointment-special-counsel

which allows a download of this order:


Click the image to read it. Mueller's title per the item is "Special Counsel for the Department of Justice." There is nothing in the single page order imposing a timeline or jurisdictional limit beyond where picking up the existing FBI investigation in his judgment leads him (unless the cited Title 28 CFR sections impose constraints). There is nothing in the order requiring any reporting to anyone in the Justice Department at any time, nor is there any budget specified nor requirements as to staffing the office. It looks as if Rosenstein cut a blank check and media reporting appears happy with the latitude.

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Uncertain and wondering. Montana on my mind.

Out of Montana, this report, where in some way or fashion a Chinese Wall is supposed to exist between a campaign war chest and its efforts, and a PAC and its efforts.

The report notes a Gianforte personal solicitation of money sources, like, route the cash through a PAC folks it ends up in the same place, as best as I read this:

The committee, called End Citizens United, is alleging Greg Gianforte could have used the Gianforte Victory Fund to circumvent federal contribution limits in a complaint it says was filed with the Federal Election Commission on Tuesday. The Gianforte campaign has not received notice that the complaint was filed.

[...] The complaint stems from a call May 4, first reported by the New York Times, in which Gianforte told potential donors "if someone wanted to support through a PAC, our victory fund allows that money to go to all the get-out-the-vote efforts."

The Gianforte Victory Fund is a a joint fundraising committee that includes Greg For Montana (the candidate's group), the Montana Republican State Central Committee and National Republican Congressional Committee.

Joint fundraising committees are a legal way to solicit money for multiple campaigns or committees at a time. [...]

[...] However, the Quist campaign is in the same boat. That campaign also has a joint fundraising committee, the Quist Victory Fund, of which the only members are the Quist campaign and the Montana Democratic Party. That means any contributions the Quist Victory Fund receives -- whether given directly to him or to the Montana Democratic Party -- would only benefit Quist since he's the party's only candidate on the ballot this May.

Gianforte's campaign strongly rebutted the complaint Tuesday.

"This group is a sham and the complaint is bogus. This is a 100 percent phony complaint filed by a shady partisan PAC that has endorsed, supports and is backing Rob Quist. This isn’t a valid complaint, it's laughable," said spokesman Brock Lowrance.

It's only fair to quote the rebuttal, and that's been done. What I do not see is any claim it is "perfectly legal" for a candidate - not a PAC itself acting independent of a candidate - to solicit trick routing; nor do I see any contention Rob Quest made any call doing what the report says Gianforte, personally, did.

Does that make a difference, legally? Ethically, there is a divide. But beyond that, I always envisioned GOTV being a grassroots volunteer thing, the enthusiasts phone bank and do GOTV including a willingness to drive people to a polling place, because they believe.

Is the story that Gianforte has no grassroots, or insufficient grassroots that he has to pay GOTV minions?

Am I wrong? Montana is a big state with lots of highway miles to travel, so buying grassroots GOTV may be a norm there, but to use the classic phrase it looks more like astroturf than grassroots when it's bought.

Add that to a candidate directly soliciting routing money through PACs, breaching any semblence of a Chinese Wall that way, and I wonder.

____________UPDATE_____________
The report is fresh from yesterday, May 16, and is the only online reporting of the campaign finance violation complaint found by web search. If the matter is fleshed out by further reporting which readers may see, please as a courtesy submit a comment with a link.

FURTHER: Additional websearch yields: End Citizens United has received mainstream media coverage and is legit; see, here and here; the latter item noting that just over a year ago the operation had raised over eleven million dollars.

Their website:

http://endcitizensunited.org/

at this link reports on its complaint against Gianforte and his campaign. Linking to a http://www.ktvq.com story

The Violation:

The amount of money a candidate may receive from one source is limited. To prevent circumvention of these limits, a person who contributes to a candidate cannot contribute to a political action committee that supports the candidate if the contributor knows a substantial portion will aid that candidate.

By telling his donors their contributions would be used for his “get out the vote” operation, which would solely benefit his own campaign, Gianforte may have triggered a violation. He also put his donors at risk of violation.

“It’s clear why Montanans can’t trust Greg Gianfote. He has a history of lying to voters, skirting campaign finance laws, and working against Montana values,” ECU President and Executive Director Tiffany Muller said. “After he was caught breaking his pledge to voters that he won’t take corporate PAC money, we dug deeper into the law and determined he may be breaking the rules. The FEC should immediately investigate the Gianforte campaign and take appropriate action.”

Gianforte’s solicitation was uncovered in reports of a recording of Gianforte on a call with donors, first obtained by CQ Roll Call. Despite a pledge to not accept corporate PAC money, Gianforte told his donors that he would take it into his victory fund.

Although the Gianforte campaign later said the candidate meant to direct the money into the Montana Republic Party, the same law applies.The amount of money a candidate may receive from one source is limited. To prevent circumvention of these limits, a person who contributes to a candidate cannot contribute to a political action committee that supports the candidate if the contributor knows a substantial portion will aid that candidate.

[link in original] The item gives this as a link to the text of the complaint, which downloads as a pdf document. It seems as if there's a bunch of tracking crap in their links and they should stop that. It offends.

That said, it appears the Chinese Wall business is at play, and while not experienced at all in campaign compliance I've seen enough of it before to suspicion that was the problem, where only an amateur or a desperate person would be expected to deliberately step on a body part that way; (GG is sophisticated in business but likely relying on consultants/advisors to navigate compliance shoals, and somebody may have let the boss down). Intent to violate campaign finance law seems to not be an element, so an inadvertent breach, as this case suggests, likely is nonetheless a violation. For a business person such as GG, it likely would not be a first to be hung out to dry by subordinate advice, were that the case. Yet it looks like a legit complaint, not something the GG campaign can properly dismiss as groundless. Claiming groundlessness is misstatement, or seems so, and it is a deliberately chosen tactic.

But what would you expect them to say? Do it now, however thin the ice is, and face consequences later.

Unsound? GG has more than enough wealth to pay any fine, true enough, but is that attitude and/or degree of respect for the rule of law that voters should send to Congress to represent Montana values?

FURTHER: It seems the young women writing at Independent Record slanted a story to mininimize or confuse, especially in saying the Ginaforte and Quist campaigns share a common joint fundraising structure while ignoring that the problem was a Gianforte direct on record solicitation in a way that Quist people have not done; yet we should presume they erred in understanding and not intent to confuse. My guess is they took a Gianforte staffer's commentary and wrote it up without attribution to the fudging around being so sourced. They could of course have erred entirely on their own, but the wording suggests a hand at play leading them down a primrose path. The Quist and Gianforte situations are entirely different.

Roll Call does a better job. It gets Gianforte meeting himself one way and another about the no PAC money pledge, and reports that. But a hat tip to the helenair.com item for catching the web indexing/search services attention. It was the first link found, and that led to the rest.

FURTHER: Here is a cut from the complaint filed with the FEC (the downloadable pdf item referenced earlier):


You be the judge.

It's that Gianforte portfolio. Again. How can you trust a portfolio keeping Russian holdings after a call out, and now owning a share of a firm Trump criticized pre-election. Montanans in days shall elect either a man, or a portfolio.

Diversifying from being too Oracle heavy, or was it an all cash sale, in any event, diversifying into European holdings, there always was Bayer or Siemens and safe and sound; but no, chasing whatever, it was the Russians and now HuffPo, dated May 17. stating in part, in opening:

Montana GOP Candidate Owns Stake In Company Accused Of Paying Off ISIS -- President Donald Trump attacked Hillary Clinton last year for accepting a donation to her foundation from the scandal-struck European firm. By Alexander C. Kaufman

Greg Gianforte, the millionaire GOP contender for Montana’s open seat in the House, reported owning $47,066 worth of shares in LafargeHolcim as recently as December. The shares are in an individual retirement account at TWP, a brokerage firm and private wealth manager, on which he and his wife, Susan Gianforte, are listed as trustees.

LafargeHolcim operated a factory in the north Syrian town of Kobane for three years after civil war broke out and most foreign companies fled. The company evacuated foreign employees in 2012, but kept the business going with local workers until ISIS fighters seized the factory two years later. Payments made to local armed groups to secure the factory may have unwittingly ended up in ISIS coffers, French newspaper Le Monde reported last year. CEO Eric Olsen resigned from the firm last month.

There's a place for political correctness, and a place for cautious common sense. Sometimes they are the same place, and sometimes clueless politicians miss the drift. What HuffPo means is the Russian stuff and this stuff was in the portfolio back during the contest for governor, and stayed. Chutzpah turmps good sense? What?

The matter cannot be dropped without quoting this paragraph pair, without links in the original, so go there and expand your personal understandings:

The revelation of Gianforte’s interest comes months after Republicans attacked 2016 Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton because the Clinton Foundation had accepted from a donation of between $50,000 and $100,000 from LafargeHolcim. In August, the campaign of then-GOP presidential candidate Donald Trump hammered its Democratic rival for her ties to the firm. Breitbart News, the conservative news site that Steve Bannon led until he became White House chief strategist, criticized Clinton for sitting on the board of directors for LafargeHolcim’s North American division 25 years ago.

“More than any major presidential nominee in modern history, Hillary Clinton is tied to brutal theocratic and Islamist regimes,” Stephen Miller, a senior Trump policy adviser, said at the time. “Now we learn she has accepted money from a company linked to ISIS.”

That's lean to the green Donald, saying no, no, no. Not some nattering cluck of the far left. THE DONALD! TOO RAW FOR THE DONALD!

One can wonder, was that French firm's US lobbyist in on the GG conference call? GG has not been prompt to disclose such stuff, so we are left guessing.

Breitbart, August of 2016. Having refused to vote Clinton last November, going ballot third candidacy, let the Brietbart criticism of the firm and the Clinton ties stand. Let GG differentiate his betting his money on the same racehorse. Tap dance expected? How many before the taps get sanded down to falling off the nails, from Gazprom, etc.?

_____________UPDATE_____________
LaFargeHolcim USA lobbies the state legislature in Minnesota. This link, for its lobbyist. The man has a ton of firms paying him to lobby.

This page from the past:

Minnesota revenue commissioner Ward Einess is leaving office on December 3 to start his own lobbying shop. Einess also served in Gov. Tim Pawlenty's administration as acting director of the Department of Employment and Economic Development and as a senior policy adviser.

Moving from an agency head's paycheck during the Tim Pawlenty [R] days in Minnesota into lobbying, the stench of Republican is unmistakable. Ward Einess might well have been a part of the Gianforte conference call. It's former Minnesota single-term Senator Norm Coleman's SuperPAC money in Montana, for Gianforte. Go figure.

The former high placed insider, he knows, he tells. An NYT image caption, "Benjamin Poehling, a former finance director for UnitedHealthcare Medicare and Retirement, in Minneapolis. 'They’ve set up a perfect scheme here,' 'he said of insurers. 'It was rigged so there was no way they could lose.' "

And when following the money, a former CFO as a whistleblower is not too bad as an informed instigator of litigation. First, an image of the company headquarters in Minnetonka, MN, published online in the highest circulation statewide daily, Strib, in its locally written item from yesterday, "Feds sue UnitedHealth alleging at least $1 billion in false claims - The government's complaint comes in a whistleblower case brought by a former employee in Minnesota." That online item is by Christopher Snowbeck, a staff writer specializing in healthcare coverage.

UnitedHealth headquarters. Imagining the sphere on the lawn art as the world,
there is the protuberance below, from the body of the sculpture

That locally written item, in short, notes:

The federal government sued UnitedHealth Group on Tuesday alleging the Minnetonka-based health care company wrongly received from Medicare at least $1 billion in “risk adjustment” payments based on inaccurate data submissions.

The government took issue with what it called “one-sided” chart reviews that focused on maximizing taxpayer dollars to the nation’s largest health insurer, but didn’t correct errors that allegedly inflated the company’s revenue, according to the lawsuit filed in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California.

Risk adjustment payments are made to private insurers that operate “Medicare Advantage” plans, which are an increasingly popular way for beneficiaries to obtain their government health insurance benefits. Tuesday marked the second time in a few weeks that the Justice Department filed a complaint against UnitedHealth over allegations of inflated risk adjustment payments.

After that opening there is more, with the item, as already noted, online here.

The NYT item noted in the headline, carried in a parallel Strib online item, opens by noting a past handoff by our illustrious Congress to hide a funding shortfall without any inclination to raise taxes which at fifteen years ago would have been at the tailend of Clinton-Gingrich days or early Bush II (i.e., substantially equivalent):

When Medicare was facing an impossible $13 trillion funding gap, Congress opted for a bold fix: It handed over part of the program to insurance companies, expecting them to provide better care at a lower cost. The new program was named Medicare Advantage.

Nearly 15 years later, a third of all Americans who receive some form of Medicare have chosen the insurer-provided version, which, by most accounts, has been a success.

But now a whistleblower, a former well-placed official at UnitedHealth Group, asserts that the big insurance companies have been systematically bilking Medicare Advantage for years, reaping billions of taxpayer dollars from the program by gaming the payment system.

The Justice Department takes the whistleblower’s claims so seriously that it has said it intends to sue the whistleblower’s former employer, UnitedHealth Group, even as it investigates other Medicare Advantage participants. The agency has until the end of Tuesday to take action against UnitedHealth.

In the first interview since his allegations were made public, the whistleblower, Benjamin Poehling of Bloomington described in detail how his company and others like it — in his view — gamed the system: Finance directors like him monitored projects that UnitedHealth had designed to make patients look sicker than they were, by scouring patients’ health records electronically and finding ways to goose the diagnosis codes.

The sicker the patient, the more UnitedHealth was paid by Medicare Advantage — and the bigger the bonuses people earned, including Poehling.

The clear drift, not one perp but several acting in concert, calling to mind the Sherman Act phrase for fault of a "contract, combination or conspiracy in restraint of trade." Textbook stuff, but there will be battling testimony and argument, with the adage "documents are fixed in time and cannot misrecollect." Get your popcorn and watch the movie.

After noting the action is against UnitedHealth AND 14 other firms, the NYT-based item continues:

“They’ve set up a perfect scheme here,” Poehling said in an interview. “It was rigged so there was no way they could lose.”

A spokesman for UnitedHealth, Matthew A. Burns, said the company rejected Poehling’s allegations and would contest them vigorously.

“We are confident our company and our employees complied with the government’s Medicare Advantage program rules, and we have been transparent with CMS about our approach under its murky policies,” he said, referring to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, which administers Medicare Advantage.

Burns also said Poehling’s complaints and similar ones held UnitedHealth and other Medicare Advantage participants to different standards than the ones used by the original Medicare program.

Poehling’s suit, filed under the False Claims Act, seeks to recover excess payments, plus big penalties, for the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. (Poehling would earn a percentage of any money recovered.) The amounts in question industrywide are mind-boggling: Some analysts estimate improper Medicare Advantage payments at $10 billion a year or more.

Under sharia hands would be cut off if allegations are found true in court, but expect a settlement for a specified cash amount without any admission of guilt by anyone; nobody going to the slammer. Expect that, unless Sessions proves better than predecessors in extracting vengeance on behalf of a protuberated public. Indeed, UnitedHealthcare operates worldwide, per their lawn art.