The Flathead Valley’s Leading Independent Journal of Observation, Analysis, & Opinion. © James R. Conner.


4 June 2012

Rob Stutz Will Help Democrats Win in November


By Rob Stutz, Democratic candidate for U.S. House

(Note. This column is a companion to a guest column Stutz wrote for the Montana Cowgirl Blog,“How Democrats Will Win the US House Race in November.”)

The top story in Montana politics is Montana’s stand against the corrupting power of money in politics. This might not be obvious in the traditional political reporting about “who raised more money.” What voters really need to know is which candidates put people first.

Jon Tester supports amending the United States Constitution to overturn the Citizens United decision. Steve Bullock fights in court to protect Montana’s Corrupt Practices Act. The Montana Constitution protects “against harmful and unfair practices by either foreign or domestic corporations.”

The common message: Montanans stand up to special interest influence.

In the race for Montana’s open congressional seat, I champion both Montana’s stand against special interest influence and the values in the Montana Constitution. I do not take special interest money. I do not sign special interest pledges. My approach is simple: stand up to the special interest groups and stand up for the people of Montana. If it doesn’t breathe, I don’t take its money.

Montana’s history is rife with tales of Copper Kings and others trying to buy political influence. Fast forward from Montana’s 1912 Corrupt Practices Act through a century of anti-corruption efforts and the national press now recognizes that Montana [is] the best chance of saving US democracy from “Citizens United.” Should we fail, as Governor Schweitzer noted in his recent New York Times column, “the Washington model of corruption — where corporations legally bribe members of Congress by bankrolling their campaigns with so-called independent expenditures, and get whatever they need in return — will have infected Montana.”

Montana is at the forefront of leading the United States away from money-dominated politics. You have the power to stand up to the special interest influence. You can say “Enough!” Montanans will get exactly the representation that we elect, and we can say “No!” to the special interests.

If I am elected in the June 5 primary, the Democratic Party — the party of the people — will have a unified message: work for the people of Montana and our values, not the special interest groups. All Democratic candidates — indeed, all Montanans — will benefit from a united stand against corruption.

Here is what you can do. Tell your friends and family about Stutz for Congress. This is how grassroots politics works. You have a voice and you do not have to spend a penny to use it. Phone calls and e-mail, Facebook or face-to-face, Twitter or hand-written notes: speaking up now and voting in the June 5 primary will make a difference.

Remember: money does not win elections, votes do. Ask Conrad Burns.