©2015 Concerned Citizens of Western Montana

larry moeA stooge is defined as:  a person who serves merely to support or assist others, particularly in doing unpleasant work.

That definition fits the leadership of our state like a glove.  They clearly have become stooges for the federal government and the advancement of the CSKT water compact.  Our republican Attorney General and Senator from Libby, along with many others, have served the governor’s agenda well.

After all, who needs a republican legislature when the governor has pet RINO’s to assist his efforts?

The 2015 legislative session was a fine example of how to circumvent legal and political protocol, including legislative rules, in order to advance a democrat political agenda in a “republican majority” legislature.  It spite of all that, there is a still chance that compact language itself will hoist our resident stooges on their own petard for their insistence that immunity language in the compact not be changed.  They must have felt that there are plenty of attorneys, including the state Attorney General, that will find a way to look the other way make it work with the requirements of the Montana Constitution.

While water users in western Montana anxiously await a decision on the validity of the compact vote in the legislature, supporters of the compact need not worry.  After all, Montana is proceeding with its implementation anyway, flaunting their arrogance and making way for $3 million in expenditures taken from the governor’s “slush fund” to begin reallocating measuring irrigator’s water.

It matters not to them that the compact has not been ratified by the United States or tribes.  After all, Senator Vincent made sure the compact was given an immediate “effective date”, specifically for the purpose of making it state law well ahead of any finalization of the agreement, and before other water rights in western Montana, including the irrigators, have been “adjudicated.”

To add insult to injury, the CSKT brag that they expect the compact to pass in the next “lame duck” session.  If the compact is as good as the state keeps telling us, why would it have to be entered into Congress in a lame duck session?

So what’s really going on here?  Why is Montana leadership more than happy to give the federal government ownership and control of their valuable water resources?  Why did they willingly try to throw 360,000 Montanans under the bus, and set precedent that will devastate all Montanans and have severe negative impacts on other western states?

Threats by the feds? Special deals? Money? Power or position? Willful Ignorance? Only their hairdressers know for sure.  And for Chas, we may never know.

And what about the blatant violation of the oaths of office by those legislators who voted for the compact?  Is it possible that the compact violates the Montana and United States Constitutions so egregiously that revised printings of these documents should be printed on toilet paper?

During the Senate hearings for the compact bill, SB262, we recall Senator Vincent proudly explaining that he has read all of the “jurisprudence” related to the water compact issue and that the compact is not a violation of the laws and constitution of the state of Montana.  He went on to say that people who criticize the compact are not attorneys, and therefore could not have opinions as to its legality or constitutionality.

Senator Vincent must not be as “learn-ed” as he thinks.  If he were, he would know that the constitution was written for the average citizen to read and understand.  This was so we would know when our rights are being violated.  It doesn’t take a constitutional attorney to tell us that a violation has occurred.  We know.  And Senator Vincent simply refuses to understand that he couldn’t possibly know it all.

If we didn’t know better, we would think that Montana leadership has been consulting with our country’s top “constitutional expert and attorney”, Barack Obama on just how to subjugate Montana to the federal government’s wishes.  Oh wait, that would be a conflict of interest.  After all the federal government is a party to this so called agreement.

Perhaps they should find an expert who might be inclined to look at the constitution through the lens of protecting property, equal protection for all of its citizens and due process of law instead of trying to find ways to violate them.

And just in case someone is interested in reading these constitutions, here they are:

US Constitution
Montana Constitution

As for Montana’s version of the three stooges, they will not stop causing harm to Montanans property and constitutional rights until they are stopped by the courts.  Or by the voters of the state of Montana.