Here's a sampling of releases to The Courier on the appointment of former Lt. Gov. John Walsh to replace Max Baucus, the new ambassador to China, in the U.S. Senate.
Sen. John Walsh
I’ve answered many calls in my life and today I proudly answer one more.
In 2004, I was asked to lead more than 700 of Montana’s finest men and women into combat in Iraq as the Commander of the 1-163rd Infantry Battalion. It was a tremendous responsibility.
It took incredible courage for those men and women to do what our nation asked of them. They put service before self and took responsibility for their work. They did it well and with honor.
What those Montana soldiers did in Iraq was inspiring. I rely on that inspiration every single day.
Today, I’ve been asked to serve our state in a new role: to represent all Montanans as our next United States Senator.
It’s an enormous responsibility. But I accept that responsibility because we have so much to do in the months ahead.
I will serve you well – with the same courage I saw in the men and women from Montana I went into combat – with the courage to do what’s right for Montana regardless of the consequences.
In the meantime, our campaign continues. Special interests will try to buy and take away this seat with their dark money. But they don’t know me and they don’t know you.
I don’t back down.
This boy from Butte, turned soldier, is heading to Washington to fight for you.
I hope you’ll continue to be at my side, fighting with me.
Sen. Michael Bennet, Chairman,
Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee
“While he may not agree with the party on every single issue, John Walsh has the selflessness and courage to always do what he thinks is right for Montana, and I look forward to working with him in the Senate. Senator Walsh has spent his life serving his state and his country, and I am confident he will continue to serve Montana and our nation honorably as the newest U.S. Senator from Montana.”
Montana Republican Party Chairman
"The Big Sky Buy-Off is complete, and Governor Bullock has sent Montanans a clear message that he would rather take marching orders from Barack Obama and Harry Reid than listen to the people of Montana. Instead of handling this process openly and honestly, Governor Bullock has chosen to embrace back room deals from Washington and put politics ahead of what's right for Montana."
The Montana Republican Party also emailed out editorials from the Missoulian and The Billings Gazette that were critical of Bullock appointing Walsh.
Missoulian: “Gov. Steve Bullock should not have appointed his lieutenant governor, John Walsh, to the Senate seat vacated by Max Baucus last week. That he did so without even an attempt at transparency – without even the barest explanation of his reasoning to the people of Montana – is appalling … Bullock should have chosen someone who isn’t going to spend his short time in the Senate running for election. Someone who has at least a little legislative experience … what else can Montanans conclude but that he made a politically expedient decision to help boost Senate Democrats.”
Gazette: “... Bullock’s secrecy on the process might be politics of the worst kind … It’s not clear how Bullock made his choice. Right now, it appears as if he simply selected his political buddy."
Democratic U.S. Senate primary candidate
“Montanans don’t like political cronyism. The appointment represents a top down approach to politics that doesn't work any better for the country than trickle down economics.”
Sen. Jon Tester
“Senator Baucus left big shoes to fill, but I am confident John Walsh is up to the task of finding common ground to lead our nation and put Montana first. John has spent his career serving the people of Montana as an officer in the National Guard, and his courage and sound judgment will be welcome additions to the United States Senate.”
The Democratic Tester and Republican U.S. Rep. Steve Daines also sent out releases that said they invited Walsh to join them at weekly "Montana Coffee" discussions in Washington.
MEA-MFT (Montana Education
Association–Montana Federation of Teachers)
“MEA-MFT is proud to welcome Sen. John Walsh as our newest advocate for Montana in Washington,” said MEA-MFT President Eric Feaver. “Sen. Walsh is dedicated to strong public programs and services, public education, and a robust middle class in Montana. Montana’s students, schools, educators, and public employees are in good hands with Sen. Walsh."
MEA-MFT’s members know that he will continue fighting for Montana’s dedicated public sector employees in the U.S. Senate ...
“It is worth noting that John’s wife of 29 years, Janet, has been a paraeducator in Helena public schools for 17 years.”