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Barack Obama
"Lincoln Sells Out Slaves"
by: Rob Kailey - Sep 13
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If You Haven't Seen This
by: Rob Kailey - Apr 28
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Impeach the President?
by: Rob Kailey - Mar 16
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It's the system, stupid!
by: Jay Stevens - Oct 24
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Rob Kailey is a working schmuck with no ties or affiliations to any governmental or political organizations, save those of sympathy.

Rehberg's Dirty Dozen: Orange hunting vests? So last week. The suit to have is the orange jumpsuit

by: Montana Cowgirl

Sat Mar 20, 2010 at 14:29:57 PM MST


Montanans have gotten pretty good at recognizing a shady character when we see one. But recently it's gotten a whole lot easier:  He's probably the guy wearing the "Denny Rehberg" button, staff badge, or t-shirt.  

Check out the Rehberg Dirty Dozen below the fold.

Is character still important to Montana voters? Is it still important to elect leaders that value character? Even George W. Bush said "A leader must surround himself with honorable people."

When you see who Rehberg chooses as his associates, staff, and advisors, what does it tell you about his judgment? What does it say when he selects people like this to advise him on matters that are so important?

This is a story that definitely speaks for itself.  

Montana Cowgirl :: Rehberg's Dirty Dozen: Orange hunting vests? So last week. The suit to have is the orange jumpsuit
1-Pat Davison. This is the con man who funneled Rehberg thousands from fake companies that Davison set up as part of his multi-million dollar securities fraud scam.  Davison's current address is federal prison.

2-Greg Barkus. Who hasn't heard of Rehberg's friend and northwest Montana Republican Senator and liason currently charged with three felonies.   I'm talking about how he and Rehberg got wasted, Rehberg let a him drive drunk, and ran up an estimated $1.5 million tab for health care and work comp claims for himself and his staff.  In Nevada where I went to college we had a program called Operation Dry Water-cash rewards for turning in drunk boaters.  That may have had no effect on this case however as Rehberg is one of the richest members of congress already.

3- Randy Vogel. Poacher and Rehberg state director, Randy Vogel is actually the fourth high ranking Montana Republican to be busted for poaching recently, not the third as I recently posted.  I forgot about Shawn Vassell.

4-Mike Waite The second Rehberg staffer on the Vogel poaching trip. So I guess he's the fifth.

5-Todd Shriber. Don't forget about the man who became an Internet joke when he tried to hire computer hackers to boost his college transcript then was unmasked as a top aide to Rehberg, his Communications Director no less: Todd Shriber, now 33.  An Internet blogger revealed his identity and he was forced to confess.

6-Leo Giaccometto. You all remember Leo Giaccometto. He really merits his own post.   He's the same Leo Giaccometto that was Conrad Burn's Chief of Staff turned lobbyist (and current employer).

But what you may not recall is that he's also great friends with Montana's Republican Congressman, Dennis Rehberg.

In 2003, Giaccometto's Gage network helped organize a Capitol Hill panel discussion about technology issues in Asia. In 2004, it arranged a trip to Kazakhstan. Rehberg, Giaccometto and lobbyists attended, among others. Leo Giacometto's US-Asia Network trip to Kazakhstan was instant lore in Montana politics. Upon return to the US, a diplomat was so shocked by what happened that the details were emailed to Roll Call, and soon became national news.

7-Kevin Ring, a "Team Abramoff" member who pled the Fifth Amendment before the U.S. Senate committee investigating Abramoff has connections to Rehberg. Rehberg recommended Carter County Montana hire Ring and Abramoff's firm to lobby for transportation funding. Carter County officials said Rehberg recommended Ring "because he knew him" and even after the abuses of "Team Abramoff" lobbying practices were exposed Rehberg's spokesman said he couldn't think of anyone better. Ring, who brought in nearly $100,000 in lobbying for Carter County contributed to both Burns and Rehberg.

8-Jack Abramoff.  After Rehberg accepted $20,000 in contributions from convicted lobbyist Jack Abramoff and his clients, he tried to cover his trail by voting to kill the investigation into Abromoff. (H Res 746, House Vote 76, 3/30/06; H Res 762, House Vote 87, 4/5/06)

9 and 10-Erik Iverson, Rehberg's former top advisor and Erik Iverson's wife. A legislative audit investigation into the Montana university system and its "contracts" revealed that something didn't smell right. The Inland Northwest Space Alliance (INSA) had significant connections to Sen. Conrad Burns and Rep. Denny Rehberg. Both Rehberg and Burns helped bring millions of dollars in federal aid to the INSA. It was revealed that Iverson's wife worked for INSA, paid for by a contract gotten by Rehberg, when New West reported that "the wife of Rehberg's chief of staff Erik Iverson was also listed as an associate on the INSA's web site."  INSA brought no space contracts to MT, in case you didn't notice...

11 and 12-VECO executives Bill J. Allen and Richard L. Smith.  Rehberg took at least $1,700 dollars from two men- former VECO Corp. CEO Bill Allen and former lobbyist Jim Clark- who were found guilty of corruption in the scandal that shook the Alaska political world and secured multiple convictions of local, statewide and national figures.  Allen and Clark have pleaded guilty to various felony corruption charges including bribery, fraud, and conspiracy; last week Allen was sentenced to three years in prison and fined $750,000. [ Anchorage Daily News, 10/28/2009]
 
Rehberg has held onto his tainted VECO campaign cash for years, even as his colleagues have returned theirs. VECO executives are going to federal prison for bribery and Rep. Rehberg should do the honorable thing and give back the dirty money.
 
Republicans who previously divested themselves of Stevens/VECO Corp. campaign cash include GOP Sens. John McCain (R-Ariz.), Elizabeth Dole (R-N.C.), Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) and Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.), and Rep. Jon Porter (R-Nev.).
 
A spokesperson for the Alaska Republican Party said of returning their campaign cash in 2008, "It's the right thing to do in our eyes.  We don't want to be associated with these allegations." [McClatchy Newspapers, 7/31/2008]

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Ne'er Do Wells (0.00 / 0)
As my Mother used to say, "You're known by the company you keep." Thanks for the great reporting, Montana Cowgirl. I'm keeping this list handy to share with friends who may not realize the extent of Rehberg's ties to and hires of ne'er-do-wells.

This is quite the list, but you forgot Bill Martel. (0.00 / 0)
He was the Rehberg friend and donor turned John stung in a Bozeman prostitution scandal. I think I remember this blog having something about that.  

Thank you, I did forget Bill Martel. (0.00 / 0)
This list isn't likely to be complete. It's just the shady characters I could think of off the top of my head.  Please let me know others you know about.  This is one list that (sadly for Montana) will probably continue to grow.

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Purely Hypothetical, of course, but - The best candidate for the Republicans for US Senate is:
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