That’s what it will come down to in Helena on Tuesday. We’ll lose at least eight votes to the Birchers, and for every one over eight we’ll need a Democrat. Politics is arithmetic; it’s not rocket science. If we lose 15 Republicans we’ll need seven Democrats. We should get Zac Perry of Hungry Horse. For him it’s not only a good vote; it’s a smart vote. There must be other Zac Perrys, who would be helping themselves politically with this vote. I don’t know if we can count on Ellie Hill and Andrew Person. They’re from Missoula, where a no vote might not hurt them, and their yeas in Judiciary don’t guarantee one on the floor.
Actually, I am counting on Ellie Hill. I don’t think her vote in Judiciary was cast lightly. She knew exactly what she was doing. Among other things, she was sticking it to the John Birch Society, a plague on the politics of Montana. I bet that vote felt good. I remember making a few like that.
If you’re a Montana Democrat like Ellie Hill, what do you think of the John Birch Society, in purely political terms? They’re such crackpots they give the Republican Party a bad name, which may help Democrats. But purging their influence from the Republican Party moves it toward the center, making it easier for Democrats to find common ground.
This is stretching it a bit, but the Birchers are to the Republicans what the Communists were to the Democrats. Not just an embarrassment, but a very bad influence.
I never ran into a communist in my political career. If I had, I wouldn’t have laid off him because he was bad for the Democrats. Democrats are Americans.
Communists are not.