McDonald Continues Hammering Rehberg

By Beacon Staff

Another week, another press release from Montana Democratic Party Chairman Dennis McDonald lambasting U.S Rep. Denny Rehberg, R-Mont. Today’s release, titled, “Rehberg’s Vote Against the Jobs Stimulus: A Selfish Refusal to Clean Up the Mess He Helped Create,” attacks Rehberg for his vote yesterday opposing the economic stimulus plan in the House, which passed despite opposition from all Republicans and 11 Democrats.

“Someone needs to tell Dennis Rehberg that it’s time to lead, follow, or get out of the way,” McDonald said in the release. “Dennis Rehberg’s vote against the stimulus package was disappointing. Not only was it a vote against job creation legislation, it was a vote against Montana.”

McDonald went on to point out that Rehberg is the 11th wealthiest member of Congress, and is “oblivious to what the jobs and recovery package will mean to Montanans.”

This comes on the heels of a Jan. 21 press release from McDonald ridiculing Rehberg for being lazy in a way that seems somewhat out of proportion to the joking comment Montana’s lone Congressman made to the Great Falls Tribune about riding a horse in President Barack Obama’s inaugural parade, when he said he “ran for office so I didn’t have to be on a horse, working.”

McDonald responded this way:

“Rehberg’s work ethic in congress shows his comment is no joke,” said McDonald. “It’s probably better if Rehberg stays of a horse, given what happened the last time he rode one.”

Congressman Rehberg’s most infamous horse riding experience occurred in 2004, when it was reported that Rehberg took several/many shots of vodka, stole a horse, fell off it, got trampled, broke some ribs, and (separately) called the locals “coneheads.”

That these e-mails are coming in the midst of a relatively nonpartisan Legislative session (so far) and during a relative lull in national partisanship after one of the longest and most grueling elections in history, only feeds speculation that McDonald is stoking the fires for a run to challenge Rehberg in 2010. That seems to be the gossip in Helena, anyway, judging by Great Falls Tribune Capitol Bureau Chief John S. Adams, who first opined last week on what could be behind McDonald’s aggressive e-mails.

What strikes me about McDonald’s press releases is how out of place they feel two months after a major election. From September through Election Day, we received at least 10 such e-mails a day from both political parties at both the state and national level, attacking opponents for one misstep or another. But those have stopped almost completely since the election, save for McDonald’s blasts. Either he’s running for office, or just trying to keep from getting rusty when election season comes around again…

Today’s full press release from McDonald below:

(Melville, MT) At a time when Montanans are looking for principled leadership in Washington to help address the nation’s growing economic crisis, Montana’s lone Congressman yesterday gave Big Sky Country the cold shoulder – voting solely along party lines against a historic job creation and economic stimulus package.

“Someone needs to tell Dennis Rehberg that it’s time to lead, follow, or get out of the way,” Montana Democratic Party Chairman Dennis McDonald said. “Dennis Rehberg’s vote against the stimulus package was disappointing. Not only was it a vote against job creation legislation, it was a vote against Montana.”

McDonald said that while the economic crisis is deepening and unemployment is on the rise, ordinary Montanans and citizens across the country need help.

He said Rehberg, the 11th wealthiest member of Congress, is oblivious to what the jobs and recovery package will mean to Montanans. “Montanans have learned not to expect much from Dennis Rehberg,” said McDonald, “But we do expect him to understand that Montana needs the jobs this package will bring.”

“Rehberg’s vote is a poke in the eye to all Montana working families,” said McDonald.
This proposed recovery plan provides much needed funds for education and health care. It also provides funding for infrastructure, such as kick-starting the Great Falls-Calgary transmission line, which will provide opportunities for wind farms along the corridor, generation of alternative energy, and good paying jobs. In addition, the recovery legislation provides for $275 billion in tax cuts for working families.

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