Dear Senator Daines..

I am writing you, this morning, in hopes that you will support and promulgate impeachment proceedings against our current President, Donald Trump. After the past two months it is, quite frankly, the very least you can do to make amends.

You carry significant, invisible burdens sir, of that I am well aware. Not only do you currently sit in Tom Walsh’s seat, Lee Metcalf’s seat, Max Baucus’ seat, you used to sit in Jeannette Rankin’s seat. Your place in history has largely taken from you the opportunity to come close to your predecessors in accomplishment. Instead, your career in congress seems likely to fall in line with those of your party colleagues Rick Hill, Conrad Burns, and Denny Rehberg, who if remembered with any specificity will be recalled for their graft and mediocrity. Demographics, and the cultural changes which accompany them, have placed mountain states in a subservient and defensive role. Guarding federal subsidies and rural culture is not illustrious work, something which surely at least partially excuses your thin record of legislative achievement over the past 7 years.

Your first senate election was a gimme, in light of Mr. Walsh’s resignation, after his plagiarism scandal. And it was presumably out of fear that, around a year ago, you hitched your wagon to the presidents. This worked, and it is my hope that the enhanced legitimacy which must come with having defeated a formidable opponent by a surprisingly large margin will allow you to act more freely as a senator.

Montana is at a crucial place as a state; moving towards securing a second congressperson, as well as an economic future which is beyond both extractive industry and tourism, and which preserves both the physical and mental landscape that makes it unique and desirable. While your public land bonafides are inconsistent, I take it at face value from your ads that you know how to shoot a rifle, and have abundant first hand evidence that big wild places are the most valuable and fragile material capitol that Montana will ever have. Preserving this, for my kids and your grandkids, amidst the crux of accelerating population growth, is a task the equal of Senator Walsh’s antitrust work, and of Senator Metcalf’s public lands work.

Which brings us to impeachment. I think it obvious to say that the inevitable crystalized into the present yesterday; President Trump has never been a Republican, he has only ever been for himself, and has been singularly ruthless (by any past standard in American politics) in choosing vehicles to further himself. This is anathema in a republic, precisely because the most democratic aspects tend to encourage immoderation and blatant myopia. Trumpism, as a nostalgic embodiment our the national id, will endure irrespective of what happens in the next several weeks. It is your responsibility, as an elected member of the explicitly less democratic branch of the legislature, to safeguard the future of America and facilitate the quickest and most definitive death for Trumpism that circumstances and history will allow. Baring the President from holding future elective office is the best way to do this. In a democracy the people are allowed to make poor choices, one of which may well prove to be electing you, if you continue to play the dangerous sycophant. In a republic elected representatives are allowed, and are indeed supposed to, steer the ship of state with an eye towards the horizon.

It is time sir, to grab the wheel. This window will not long remain open.

7 Comments

  1. Dave,
    Awesome letter you always have a great way with words. I am a true 5th generation Montanan and I am very proud of my heritage. To see our representative through his actions help incite an armed insurrection against America was deplorable and made me hang my head in shame to be a Montanan. The only course of action he has to save face would be as you outlined.

  2. My wife and children wept at the sight. We have already sent a similar message to each representative at the federal level. Shame continues to be a theme here.

    https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/meet-the-press-host-chuck-todd-grills-gop-sen-ron-johnson-over-election-fraud/vi-BB1css1F

    Meet the press interview less than a week ago.

    Nice job David. If we just sit back and shout at the screen, we will see no justice. We must hold them accountable. Thanks again for everything.

  3. While I love everything about the letter, and love that you’re willing to take a position, my view point is far more pessimistic.

    The unfortunate truth is that after four years of his bullshit, hatred, racism, self promulgation, selfishness, and incompetency, 74 million people (what is that 1/5th of the population?) still found it acceptable to vote for him. While I find everything about him utterly depressing, it’s harder still to realize there is a fundamental ethos in America that aligns with what he embodies. He is undoubtedly a problem, but so is a large part of our population. We can pussy foot around this, as so may are wont to do, talking about the “forgotten”, the “scared”, the “ignorant”, but the truth is that those who sustain hate must ultimately face their role in it. When we excuse anyone who voted for him, I feel like we are approaching the frightening illogic of trying to justify the actions of slave owners by saying they were just worried about being able to provide for their families, a position that is clearly absurd (and yet I find myself these days wondering how many Trump supporters might pause to actually consider if it somehow has validity).

    I also had the sad opportunity to watch various bits of national news last night while at work, where I watched shameless Republican politicians denounce this activity and Trump’s actions…after fostering and supporting the very same for years now. And as icing on the cake, they will do nothing to stop it going forward. It’s borders on the truly incomprehensible that such lip service is so common place and accepted, but it is perhaps the defining feature of our politics these days.

    None of this is to say I think your letter is wrong. It is exactly what needs to be done, even if it proves futile. Without hope, nothing changes…and we’ll need a lot of it to destroy the iceberg of which Trump is only the visible tip.

  4. FWIW I got a boilerplate reply from the Senator yesterday. Not surprising, but not impressive either. Congressfolks using email bots to which their constituents cannot directly reply is a pet peeve.

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