Montana Governor Schweitzer Doesn’t Think Much of his Constituents
August 8, 2012 - 12:53 pm
Montana Democratic Governor Brian Schweitzer has been known to stick his foot in his mouth. In April, he hinted that Mitt Romney approved of polygamy when he made note of Romneys father being born into a polygamous commune in Mexico.
“I am not alleging by any stretch that Romney is a polygamist and approves of (the) polygamy lifestyle, but his father was born into (a) polygamy commune in Mexico,” Schweitzer said.
Schweitzer sought to add fuel to the so-called Republican War on Women. He commented that women are generally uncomfortable with polygamy, and Romney is a byproduct of the practice.
The governor never walked back his remarks, instead doubling down in a subsequent interview with CNN’s Anderson Cooper.
Schweitzer never suffered for making the smear. But such might not be the case when Montanans hear what their esteemed governor had to say about them at the annual dinner for the Ohio Democratic Party:
Through his 30-minute speech to Ohio Democrats, Schweitzer repeatedly boasted of his gubernatorial achievements, putting special emphasis on the Indian Education for All project. Schweitzer spearheaded the program, which requires Montana school children to learn both American-Indian and U.S. history.
Why did Schweitzer shepherd the innovative and groundbreaking program? Well, because Montanans are a bunch of white, racist rednecks – the governor’s words.
“All over Montana, you can walk into a bar, a café or even a school or a courthouse and just listen for a while as people talk to each other,” Schweitzer explained, shortly after noting 93 percent of his state’s population is classified as Caucasian. “And you will hear somebody, before very long, say something outrageously racist about the people who’ve lived in Montana for 10,000 years.”
The governor delivered the program to sway the minds and hearts of Treasure State youngsters. “So, I decided, I can’t turn the heart of a 45-year-old redneck,” Schweitzer said.
What kind of a governor makes such an outrageous statement about his own constituents? No doubt there are racists in Montana, as there are everywhere in America. But the “rednecks” who live in Montana no doubt gave Schweitzer the lion’s share of their votes, seeing as the governor actively courted their support. He ran as an outdoorsy, regular guy who likes to hunt and fish And now he uses the pejorative “redneck” in front of a bunch of white hankie easterners to describe his base of support?
By feeding Ohioans prejudices against westerners by stereotyping Montanans as a bunch of white, redneck racists, Schweitzer should be in hot water back home. The temptation to ingratiate oneself with an eastern audience eager to believe the worst of conservative westerners is no doubt great, but the governor should have resisted the urge and kept his mouth shut.