Skip to main content

I know my title sounds premature and I know there aren't any die hard supporters of Senator Max Baucus (D. MT) in this community (and you can count me as one of them) but I'm now starting to take interest in this race as one local Republican has expressed interest in challenging Baucus in 2014:

HELENA – State Rep. Champ Edmunds, R-Missoula, confirmed Tuesday he is considering running in 2014 for the U.S. Senate seat held by longtime Democratic Sen. Max Baucus.

He is the first Republican to publicly express interest in challenging Baucus, but a number of others are expected to surface.

Edmunds was elected in November to his second term in the Montana House.

“We’re doing some exploratory work, but right now, we need to focus on this session,” Edmunds said Tuesday. “We’re not running. We’re exploring.“

He has a campaign website under construction at and has printed envelopes to solicit donations for a U.S. Senate campaign. - The Missoulan, 1/8/13

It sounds like Edmunds is pretty serious about running for U.S. Senate:

Edmunds said he thinks it’s time for a change in Montana’s Senate seat.

“I think I’d be a fresh face over there,” he said. “Senator Baucus has been over there over 40 years. I think we need some new ideas and some fresh ideas. “

Baucus was elected to the U.S. House in 1974 and served there four years. He was elected to the U.S. Senate in 1978 and has served there since. Baucus ranks third in seniority in the 100-member Senate.

“Even with all that seniority, he doesn’t seem to be able to use the seniority to help Montana,” Edmunds said. - the Billings Gazette, 1/8/13

With that intimidating complexion and humorous name, I decided to look into Edmunds history.  Originally from South Carolina, Edmunds was a submariner in the U.S Navy from 1984 to 1995.  He moved to Montana in 1997 and is a mortgage banker for Wells Faro who received his bachelor’s degree in business administration and accounting and finance from the University of Montana.  In the State House, Edmunds sits on the House Appropriations Committee and its General Government Subcommittee and the House Rules Committee.  That's the basic stuff right there.  Now onto the bat shit crazy info you need to know about Edmunds.  First off, he thinks arming teachers in schools is a great way to prevent more tragedies like Sandy Hook from occurring:

Ultimately, we need to allow our teachers to have the ability to protect themselves and our kids.

I have several ideas how to do this safely, without compromising the classroom environment for teachers or students. First, teachers should be trained to use a taser and/or pepper spray, which would be securely placed in every classroom. Second, I suggest we put at least one firearm in every school, perhaps in the principal’s office, locked up of course, with several administrators having access and trained on how to use it. Finally, teachers who wish to use their concealed carry permits on school grounds should be allowed to do so, perhaps with additional training. Concealed carry – with a permit – should also be allowed on college campuses. - State Rep. Champ Edmunds (R. MT), Lewistown News-Argus, 1/7/13

Oh, and get a load of his views towards immigration:

When it comes to illegal immigration in Montana, state Rep. Champ Edmunds likes to use the analogy of a burglar breaking into someone's house while the homeowner opts to feed, clothe and provide for the intruder.

"Most people would say that's crazy," says the Missoula Republican. "But when somebody gets into our country or our state illegally, we somehow feel this obligation to provide services to them. That's crazy. We need to provide a ticket to them—a ticket back to wherever the heck they came from."

Next month, Montana voters get a chance to punch that ticket. Legislative Referendum 121 seeks to deny specific state services to people who are illegally residing in the state and establish stricter procedures to determine a person's citizenship status. The referendum appears on the Nov. 6 statewide ballot.

Edmunds, a Republican who seeks re-election this year against Democratic challenger Dave Andrews, says he agrees that there is not a substantial population of unlawful citizens in Montana right now. Nevertheless, the referendum would provide a safeguard against anybody who might enter the country illegally from Canada—a border Edmunds considers more vulnerable than the Mexican border. - Missoula Independent, 10/18/12

That's right, Edmunds fears Canadians coming over the border is a huge threat to our country.  As a comedy writer, this guys is pure comedic gold so already, I'm looking forward to this guys campaign.  But wait, there's more.  Edmunds is the guy who was trying to suppress the vote in Montana:

Edmunds has led many of the efforts to make voting harder for Montana students, seniors, veterans and Native Americans. Last session he introduced a bill that would end the ability to register and vote on the same day. If he were successful, he could have kept thousands of legally eligible Montanans from casting their votes.

Edmunds went even further when he accused University of Montana students of attempting to steal ballots to fraudulently cast votes. -, 12/31/12

Here's Edmunds in the state making his accusation:

But wait, there's even more crazy:

Edmunds also extended his absurdity beyond the access to the ballot, when he was one of the few legislators to vote against honoring Montana’s Vietnam War veterans and he also voted against naming a stretch of road after a fallen State Trooper, because it was a “slippery slope” towards naming all roads after people. -, 12/31/12
And what really makes ol' Champ even more entertaining is he's a nutso conspiracy theorist who believed that a federal probe of rape cases handled by the Missoula police was all just a political act for Vice President Biden to help gain support for the Violence Against Women Act:

Republican state lawmaker Champ Edmunds shared on social media a KGVO story questioning whether the probe is meant to highlight vice president Joe Biden’s Violence Against Women Act since it’s the first time the DOJ has probed a county attorney’s office.

“I don’t think that’s ever happened in the history of the Department of Justice,” said Edmunds, of Missoula. “I’m curious why they’re going after (County Attorney Fred Van Valkenburg) the way they are. I’ll be interested to see their findings.” - Missoulan, 5/6/12

Oh and this statement from Edmunds is priceless:
Edmunds, who said men also are victims of sexual assaults, said some accusations still need to be addressed, but he isn’t sure they need to be reviewed by an outside party: “Do we need the Department of Justice to look into those? Or could we look into those ourselves?”

He had nothing but praise for the Missoula Police Department, he said the University of Montana already has taken steps to fix its reporting problems, and he was heartened to hear Engen note the number of rapes here isn’t above average.

“Not that one case of sexual assault is good, but to know that we’re not having more in Missoula than is average for a town or university is somewhat good to hear,” Edmunds said. - Missoulan, 5/6/12

So yeah, if Edmunds ends up being the GOP nominee, and it very well could happen, he will certainly be making a lot of press and will be a great source of material for Stephen Colbert, Jon Stewart and the other late night talk shows.  

Now I really don't have a lot of care for Baucus.  I don't like him either, neither do our fellow progressives and Democrats in Montana like him.  But if there's one person they really don't like more than Baucus it's Champ Edmunds:

It’s one thing to be an idiot, “Champ.” It’s entirely another to be an asshole. One term is more than enough for this clown. - Intelligent Disconect, 1/29/12
But sadly, Montana voters gave Edmunds a second term and now he's thinking about taking on Max Baucus.  I can now see the how Baucus can argue against ol Champ, "I might be an asshole but at least I'm not an idiot.  Champ's only real shot at winning this race is through guys like Karl Rove and Super PAC cash but Champ might be such an asshole that his buddies at Wells Fargo wouldn't want to be associated with him.  Champs social views and anti-Obama rhetoric will motivate the Tea Party base, which is pretty big, and might be able to get back voters Denny Rehberg (R) lost in 2012 in his battle against incumbent Senator Jon Tester (D) to Libertarian candidate Dan Cox.  The Tea Party Congressman turned out to be the Big Brother Congressman:

Perhaps Representative Rehberg held another 75 town hall meetings between February 9th and 10th to explain his shifting vote on reauthorization of the Patriot Act. More likely, our independent, “Montana first” Representative caved to Washington pressure and changed his vote in less than a day.

On February 9, 2011 Rehberg did not believe in reauthorization:

Among the 26 House Republicans who broke with party leaders Tuesday and voted against extending key provisions of the Patriot Act were two rumored Senate hopefuls and one lawmaker who has already jumped into a marquee race.

Rep. Denny Rehberg (R-Mont), who announced a challenge to Sen. Jon Tester (D-Mont.) over the weekend, and Reps. Dean Heller (R-Nev.) and Connie Mack (R-Fla.) all voted against the reauthorization.

On February 10, 2011, however, he changed his mind:

The House on Thursday voted to proceed on a measure that would extend key provisions of the Patriot Act counter-terrorism surveillance law, two days after the proposal came up short in a Republican-led effort to approve it under fast-track rules.

The four Republicans voting “no” on Thursday were Reps. Ron Paul (Texas), Chris Gibson (N.Y.), Raul Labrador (Idaho) and Tom McClintock (Calif.). All four had opposed the measure on Tuesday. Meanwhile, 172 Democrats voted against proceeding Thursday, up from the 148 who voted “no” on Tuesday. - Intelligent Design, 2/11/11

Tester ended up beating Rehberg by four after the race had been hyped up into being painted as a very tight race.  Baucus won't have Rehberg to worry about in 2014 and he's been getting ready for re-election while Tester was wrapping up his election.  He's well aware how disliked he is in Montana.  Also unlike Rehberg, Edmunds is a member of the Constitution Caucus which is pushing the Montana GOP so far right... into a ditch:

They call it the Constitution Caucus, and its message rang clear as veteran Rep. Krayton Kerns rose in the state House Friday to oppose a bill to provide counseling for children from violent homes.

“Don’t vote your heart on this one, vote your oath,” Kerns urged his fellow legislators. “The constitutional vote on this is no because it will grow government.”

Rep. James Knox, a freshman Republican from Billings, couldn’t have agreed more. Killing the bill wasn’t the easy thing to do, he said, but it is why he and others were sent to Helena. Helping the needy is a job for communities, individuals and churches – not the government, he added.

Both men are members of what they call the Constitution Caucus, a loose affiliation of conservative legislators, some with ties to Tea Party groups. Their unifying belief is that more government means less freedom.

The “freedom bills” they espouse so far cover causes ranging from beating back federal health-care reform to expanding gun rights. - The Western News

The Constitution Caucus has failed to woo over establishment Republicans on a lot of their bills but because Champ is one of them, they'll campaign hard for Champ.  So Baucus will need to be ready to campaign and get voters out for him.  My word of advice to Baucus is to remind Montanans that Social Security doesn't contribute to the deficit:

“Social Security benefits are financed only through payroll taxes and the Trust Fund,” Baucus (left) said during a hearing held by his committee entitled “Perspectives on Deficit Reduction: Social Security.” Social Security, he continued, “is not responsible for the deficits we face in the general fund today. Therefore, I believe Social Security should not be part of our efforts to reduce those deficits.” - Advisor One, 5/10/11
Baucus also explained how by law, Social Security must remain separated from the rest of the Federal budget and the program cannot borrow money from the general Federal budget.  He needs to stick with your words with actions if you want to be part of the next congress in 2015.  It's one of the few key principals Baucus and many of the members in this community can see eye to eye on.  Baucus campaigned on defending Social Security in 1996 against Rehberg when you called him for wanting to privatize Social Security when he was vulnerable then for raising taxes.  It worked.  Tester attacked Rehberg for advocating Social Security cuts and vowed to protect Social Security.  It worked for Tester too.  In fact defending Social Security and Medicare is a winning strategy for Democrats especially in rural red states with high elderly populations.  

Markos explained how Republicans can get away with voting for cuts to the safety net and still being able to win because the Republican base is bat shit crazy.  Democrats can't do that so they have to stick by their promises to defend Social Security, medicare and medicaid, especially during midterm elections where base turn out is essential.  Otherwise, we end up with guys like Champ.

So unless Steve King in Iowa, Virginia Foxx in North Carolina and and Joe Miller in Alaska jump in and whoever unseats Saxby Chambliss in Georgia in the primary is, I would like to give Champ Edmunds the early title of "Craziest Candidate Of 2014".  You'll be helping Baucus follow the path of re-election victory Harry Reid and Claire McCaskill took in 2010 and 2012.  

Originally posted to pdc on Wed Jan 09, 2013 at 10:27 PM PST.

Also republished by Montana Kossaks.

Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags


More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Egalitare, Stein, randallt, wdrath

    Funny Stuff at

    by poopdogcomedy on Wed Jan 09, 2013 at 10:27:27 PM PST

  •  How do (0+ / 0-)

    people like this get elected. It boggles the mind

  •  Wish you would (5+ / 0-)

    delete the part about his looks.

    Based on the way his face sags on one side in all pictures, it looks like he has a neurological problem on one side of his face.  Could be from an accident, a stroke or Bell's Palsy (Bell's palsy is a sudden weakness or paralysis on one side of the face that makes it hard for a person to move the mouth, nose, or eyelid and can make that side of the face droop or look stiff. It occurs when one of the facial nerves is not functioning properly, often after a virus).

    Go after him for what he says, or what he has done, but not for this.

  •  "Champ Edmunds....or else" (0+ / 0-)

    Perfect campaign slogan to pair with that surly mug shot!

    When you are right you cannot be too radical; when you are wrong, you cannot be too conservative. --Martin Luther King Jr.

    by Egalitare on Thu Jan 10, 2013 at 12:48:23 AM PST

  •  I just HATE Baucus though... (0+ / 0-)

    he is one of the reasons single-payer or a public option was not even considered in the ACA. He actually had the nurses and doctors advocating for single-payer arrested and taken from the hearing room. The man is bought and paid for by so many special-interests, I would be physically ill voting for him. Remember how he was so part of the Bush tax-cut law that he standing right next to Bush with his Cheshire grin in the photograph. He was SO proud to be bi-partisan w/ bush. SLEAZY. I hate him.

    "In wildness is the preservation of the world." - Henry David Thoreau

    by wolf advocate on Thu Jan 10, 2013 at 01:57:52 AM PST

    •  Baucus is no Democrat. When he originally ran for (0+ / 0-)

      office, he waltzed into the local news office (The Missoulian, I think) and announced, "Hey, I'm running for the senate! Which party will give me the best chance to win?"

      (I'm paraphrasing from memory, but the story is pretty well-known.)

      Baucus is for Baucus.

    •  I can't blame you for hating Baucus and I won't be (0+ / 0-)

      raising money for him like I have for other candidates.  I'll only be writing about Baucus if he says or does something I agree with like stating the obvious that Social Security doesn't contribute to the deficit.  He's an asshole for sure but he holds a lot of power and if he can stay true to his words on Social Security and back up his words with actions then I might hold my nose and advocate his re-election campaign.  Some times in politics you need to keep your friends close and your enemies closer.  But at least Democrats like Mary Landrieu and Joe Donnelly I can stick up for more and get behind unlike Baucus.

      Funny Stuff at

      by poopdogcomedy on Thu Jan 10, 2013 at 01:39:39 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Probably has nerve damage of some kind (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    RamblinDave, luckylizard

    Probably shouldn't make fun of it anyway as I assume you would find his policies odious even if he was man pretty.

    •  Yes. (0+ / 0-)

      Perhaps he's had a stroke.  At any rate, an attempted smile would only accentuate the droop.  There is certainly plenty with which to disagree without worrying about his non-smile.

      -7.62, -7.28 "Hold fast to dreams, for if dreams die, life is a broken winged bird that cannot fly." -Langston Hughes

      by luckylizard on Thu Jan 10, 2013 at 05:01:47 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Hey just reading the comments now. Sorry if the (0+ / 0-)

    look part was insensitive.  Didn't realize that.  I'll fix that.

    Funny Stuff at

    by poopdogcomedy on Thu Jan 10, 2013 at 07:16:49 AM PST

  •  actually... (0+ / 0-) looks like this guy would be the perfect candidate for Baucus to run against...certainly if Tester can beat Rehlberg by four points, Baucus could beat this rabid right-winger?

  •  Whoops, your rabid liberal colors are showing... (0+ / 0-)

    Attacking people on the basis of appearance when trying to be profoundly intelligent and politically astute? Outstanding. Maybe you should change your title to "dipsh*t comedy." You are a contributory factor in people becoming dumber while surfing the net. By the bye you do not know when, or when not, to use commas or semicolons. I just thought I might point that out for your own betterment if you wish to be taken seriously in future articles of profound intrigue that may redeem you from this dogsh*t missive.

  •  Really? (0+ / 0-)

    I happen to know for a fact that the damage to one side of Champ's face was due to docor error while he was being delivered as a newborn. Not due to a stroke or whatever other kind of heresay you all can come up with. It is insensitive, emotion driven and childish to attack a politician on such a low level... whether or not you like them. One more bit of advice for "Poopdogcomedy" the author of this "factual article", if you want anyone, whether they are liberal or conservative to take you seriously try not to write so emotionally. Take the time to build proper paragraphs. Writing the way you do no matter how false or true, negates any truth that may be present because for lack of a better way to describe it it makes you look like a fool. If this kind of sideways/lowblow dogfighting is what people, specifically very left wing liberals are resorting to I feel sad for those people. Take care.

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site