About the time you’re reading this, the newly appointed US Senator from Montana, John Walsh, should be arriving in DC. He’ll be toting some bags for sure but he’ll also be toting a lot more “baggage”.
In case you’ve missed the story, soon-to-be Senator John Walsh has been the pivot player in a Barack Obama and Harry Reid political ploy no more transparent than the air in Los Angeles on a “Smog Red Alert” day. The crux of the story can be found in Dem Candidate for Senate Abused National Guard Position and the follow-up, John Walsh: Democrat Darling has Disappeared.
If the story stopped there, it would still be egregious enough, but there’s even more contributing to the baggage John Walsh is bringing to Capitol Hill.
While the aforementioned articles address Walsh’s abuse of position and power as the Adjutant General of the Montana National Guard, it has also been reported (initially in 2011 but, like much of Walsh’s past, kept quiet) that Walsh was at the center of fiscal malfeasance within the Montana Department of Military Affairs.
The Montana Department of Military Affairs does a poor job of managing the federal money it receives and couldn’t even accurately report the number of active contracts it had with vendors, according to a pair of new audits.
Montana National Guard Brig. Gen. John Walsh said he was disappointed in the results and is taking the issue seriously, promising changes to correct all of the problems. In all cases, the agency agreed with the auditors’ recommendations.
In November of last year, Harry Reid called Walsh’s newly announced challenger for the Democratic nomination, former Montana Lt. Governor John Bohlinger, and told him not to run.
Former Montana Lt. Gov. John Bohlinger said U.S. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev) told him not to run for the U.S. Senate next year, saying he didn’t want to see a Democratic primary in the race for the seat being vacated by Max Baucus (D-MT).
Bohlinger, now a Democrat after previously holding state office as a Republican, said that on November 6th, the day after he announced his candidacy, he received a phone call from Reid, saying current Lt. Gov. John Walsh was his choice for the ticket.
There was nothing nebulous about who Reid’s hand-picked candidate to combat Rep. Steve Daines in 2014 was, and Reid was not interested in anybody upsetting his apple cart. Now this can be written off to politicking, and again if the story stopped there maybe Walsh wouldn’t require a team of Sherpas to tote his baggage back East today.
Abuse of power, inability to oversee responsible fiscal management and the nefarious scheme orchestrated by Obama and Reid; but again the story does not stop there.
Last year the next US Senator from Montana was named as a defendant in a sex-based favoritism lawsuit filed against the Montana Department Of Disaster And Emergency Services.
Court documents state that Lay is claiming wrongful discharge, actual malice and bad faith action by defendants for terminating her employment and refusing to hire her for other positions after nearly 22 years of employment.
Now-Lieutenant Governor John Walsh, is included as a defendant with Erv Kent for their official capacities with the State Montana Military Affairs Department.
Given the sheer tonnage of Walsh’s baggage and his penchant for avoiding the spotlight, obviously for good reason, it’s no shock that the National Republican Senatorial Committee has released a video highlighting the history of this soon-to-be Senator.
The NRSC is not alone in shining the spotlight on the newest member of the US Senate as American Crossroads has made a six-digit ad buy attacking Walsh this week. Lest you think that all of this is a DC centric writer; a Republican campaign organization; and a GOP aligned super PAC down on a guy they don’t care for consider the words of a Montanan in today’s Missoulian.
I am far from the only Montanan who is troubled by the manner in which Democrat Gov. Steve Bullock addressed the issue of Max Baucus’ replacement in the U.S. Senate. Bullock prevaricated for months, refusing to acknowledge that he would appoint Lt. Gov. John Walsh to the seat when Baucus was confirmed as Obama’s ambassador to China.
Yet, to no one’s surprise, that’s just what Bullock did Friday, the day after Baucus was confirmed by the Senate.
The problem is rather simple – Montanans know virtually nothing about Walsh except that he spent 33 years in the National Guard prior to becoming Bullock’s lieutenant governor. Not to diminish his experience with the Guard, but it has very little to do with the broad-spectrum of day-to-day policy challenges facing both the state and the nation.
If this is the end of the story is hard to say. Given Walsh’s checkered past it’s impossible to know what else may surface.
What can be said with certainty is that President Obama and Senate Leader Reid are so paranoid about the loss of the upper chamber majority in November, they are prepared to do anything, including shipping Max Baucus off to China and sliding their hand-picked candidate in as an incumbent. I wonder if they’ll be helping John Walsh lug his baggage to town as well.