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View Diary: Rick Perry opposes direct election of United States senators (191 comments)

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  •  The 17th was an anti-corruption measure... (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    JC from IA, drmah, ROGNM, Railfan

    prompted by a scandal in Montana.  Plutocrat copper barons William A. Clark and Marcus Daly hated each other with a passion, and fought each other tooth and nail over just about everything.  Clark was elected to the Senate by the legislature, but Daly and his muck-raking papers documented how he bought scores of legislators.  Clark finally resigned, but only when the governor was out-of-state.  The Lieutenant Governor then appointed Clark to the seat, as the legislature was out of session.  he never took the seat.  Daly died a year later, and Clark was re-elected to "his" vacant seat.  The 17th was passed in response in part to this blatant corruption.

    Today, in the rotunda of the state capitol building in Helena, there are two plaques on two sides of a projecting corner.  One celebrates the life of William A. Clark, and describes him as elected Senator twice.  The other, around the corner (so the plaques don't face each other) is to the memory of the publisher of the Montana Standard (Daly's paper), for exposing Clark's corruption.  By standing away from the corner at the right location, you can get a picture of both plaques.

    So the upshot is that Rick Perry and the Tea Baggers want to go back to a system where corporate interests could buy off their legislators and own their own Senator.  Shades of Citizen's United.

    The Scout Law (trustworthy, loyal, helpful...) is a GREAT liberal manifesto.

    by DaytonMike on Fri Aug 12, 2011 at 09:08:02 AM PDT

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