Did Dems Pick a Senate Candidate Way Too Liberal for Montana?
Name recognition and campaign cash also issues for woman replacing Walsh on the ballot.
August 25, 2014 - 9:31 pm
Amanda Curtis will be running for Senate in Montana as a Sen. Elizabeth Warren-style, progressive Democrat who says the race is not about Democrats versus Republicans.
Curtis believes the race that could help decide which party controls the Senate is about “millionaires versus the middle class.”
“This is the fundamental difference between Steve Daines and me. He seems like a nice guy with a wonderful family but I am pretty sure he doesn’t understand what life is like for most of us,” Curtis said in her nomination acceptance speech.
“America is breaking its promises,” Curtis said. “The cost of college is going through the roof. You can’t work your way through college these days so you take out loans, more every year, and the interest rates are going up and up and up.”
Montana Democrats chose Curtis to replace Sen. John Walsh (D-Mont.) in the race against Rep. Steve Daines (R-Mont.) after failing to convince former Gov. Brian Schweitzer or actor Jeff Bridges to run for Senate. Bridges told Sirius XM shock jock Howard Stern his wife wouldn’t let him run. Schweitzer posted a Facebook message that said pretty much the same thing, noting that he had better things to do.
Walsh dropped out of the race Aug. 7 because of a plagiarism scandal involving his U.S. Army War College master’s thesis.
Schweitzer endorsed Curtis after her nomination and promised to campaign for her. But some of his Facebook followers were less than enthusiastic.
One wrote: “I like you Gov Brian Schweitzer…but Amanda Curtis is a leftist nutjob. Her attacks on the Bible and the family are inexcusable. Any good Democrat would know that her San Francisco values do not play in Montana. I will not be voting for her.”
Another of Schweitzer’s Facebook followers wrote the most important question of the campaign: “Who is Amanda Curtis?”
Democrats don’t have a “big name” with star power.
But they do have a union-card-carrying high school math teacher who loves to hunt, fish, ride ATVs, dirt bikes and mountain bikes – everything expected of a woman who lives in Big Sky Country.
Curtis picked up the endorsement of the Montana AFL-CIO two days before the special nominating convention.
Al Ekblad, executive secretary for the state chapter, said its board unanimously endorsed the 34-year-old Curtis because she is a union member and can attract female and young voters.
“I’m going to be telling people this candidate appeals to young voters, she appeals to women, she’s charismatic,” he said. “And she carries a union card.”
Curtis also has some political experience after serving nearly a full term in the Montana State Legislature.
But that’s about it.