In the mail

Wednesday, November 2, 2022

Power of purple

To the editor, Throughout Montana’s modern history we’ve consistently had a mix of republican and democratic leadership, with one party as governor and always a mix in congress. When I was a kid, our governor was Ted Schwinden (D), followed by Stevens (R), Racicot (R), Martz (R), Schweitzer (D), Bullock (D), and Gianforte (R). If you keep looking back, you’ll see a surprisingly balanced “purple” trend in the office with nine Republicans and 15 Democrats. Our congressional delegation has exemplified a similar trajectory, currently with Senators Daines (R) and Tester (D), and representative Rosendale (R), with a history of 14 Democrats/eight Republicans in the Senate, and 15 Democrats/18 Republicans in the House. A few governors have even chosen lieutenant governors of the opposite party (most recently Schweitzer/Bohlinger).

As we fill out our ballots, I encourage you to honor Montana’s tradition of bipartisanship and vote for Monica Tranel, maintaining the important “purple” nature of leadership in our state. If Zinke were elected, we would experience an unprecedented conservative imbalance. That’s not natural for Montana, and it’s not healthy for us as residents. Montanans are at our best when we are working to understand one another and able to make progress on important pieces of legislation. The trend toward power-hoarding is en vogue, but Montana’s strength has always been in our ability to hold conversations across partisan divides and create coalitions to solve tough problems. It’s important our leadership be required to have crucial conversations before casting their vote; taking into account diverse viewpoints of stakeholders across the state instead of rubber-stamping their party. It’s true that having dual representation can sometimes result in a draw, with one vote canceling out the other. However, the value of a “purple” state is in the pre-vote collaboration, when leaders are forced to come to the table and participate in the difficult conversations that result in responsible statecraft that creates a better and more representative government for all of us, not just one party. We are at our best when leaders necessarily talk to one another with respect and listen with an intent to understand and find solutions. Keep our state’s legacy in mind as you fill out your ballot. Don’t buckle to the myths that Montana values are Republican or Democratic, as much as the ridiculously simplistic flyers in our mailboxes want us to believe. Our power has truly and historically always been “purple.”

Blakely Hay Dillon

Big government?

To the editor, So, Republicans, Are You FOR or AGAINST big government?

If you have the misfortune of reading Steve Daines’, Matt Rosendale’s, Ryan Zinke’s drivel on Twitter or FB, you’ve probably seen them push the R talking points about big government trying to weasel its way into our daily lives and how they are opposed to this…that is, unless you have a uterus.

In the case that you do have a uterus, Daines, Rosendale, and Zinke are totally fine with big government being in your business. Forced birth extremists, like those mentioned above, claim to be “pro-life” all while voting against bills that could actually help women and families like affordable health care and child tax credits. Hell, Daines even voted against capping the cost of insulin. None of this is pro-life. They are more concerned with pushing their beliefs on everyone, and they are totally fine with big government, whether at the state or federal level, controlling what YOU do and invading YOUR privacy…as long as it doesn’t affect them.

Even in the disgusting/ill informed/misogynistic stance that abortion should only be legal in the cases of rape and incest, Republicans are telling women that they have to be violated before they should have bodily autonomy. So, according to these three, it makes complete sense and does not seem hypocritical at all that WOMEN should have big gov in their doctor’s appointments, in their personal choices, and threatening their right to privacy. Got it. If you think that forced birth extremism isn’t a thing, you might find it interesting that the majority of repubs in the House and in the Senate voted against the Right To Contraception Act. Fear of losing our right to birth control and our right to privacy has become more justified as SCJ Clarence Thomas stated that the SC should consider overturning cases that he claims are “demonstrably erroneous” such as Lawrence vs. Texas which made it legal for married couples to purchase birth control. (It wasn’t until 1972 that unmarried people were even allowed to purchase birth control.)

So, Repubs, are you FOR or AGAINST big government? Because your actions speak louder than your words.

Linda Hollifield Dillon


To the editor, Election Day next Tuesday! Yea! What are our choices? The Republicans keep saying they want to Make America Great Again! But they never offer a plan or any ideas about what that means.

These past few months congress passed a number of Bills. All to help America. They pass an infrastructure bill to build America. Not one Republican voted to help America.

Also passed was the American Rescue Plan, the CHIPS Acts to help children. A bill capping the price of insulin. A bill stating that large corporations pay their share in taxes. Not one Republican voted yes to any of these bills. The Republicans want to Make America Great by voting NO?

Also a bill was passed that would provide benefits for veterans exposed to bum pits. The Republicans tried to block this bill that would help veterans. It finally passed.

Now the Republicans want to send Ryan Zinke to Congress so he can vote no and not support America.

Just what does Make America Great Again mean to the Republicans?

LaVon D. Brillhart Dillon

Actions vs. words

To the editor, The front page of the Dillon Tribune’s Oct. 19, 2022 edition featured three articles that point out that actions speak louder than words.

Jackson, Montana’s sewer upgrade, the completed Dillon water main project, the repaving of Park Street/Ten Mile Road and the drying beds at the sewage treatment plant have been or are dependent on the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) tax dollars. I wasn’t certain where the fuel storage tanks money was coming from, but my guess is possibly the ARPA, as well.

The ARPA was passed the first year of the Biden administration and sadly not a single Republican voted in support. It doesn’t need to be that way. Policy should be the deciding factor when voting. This act has benefitted all United States citizens and has helped you and me. It wasn’t passed to line the pockets of the major corporations.

One final vote I want you to consider is the vote for our new congressional seat. Sunday night Monica Tranel made her third trip to Beaverhead County. I wish more would have joined a sizeable crowd. She answered lots of questions, but one in particular affects those of us in Beaverhead County. The wind farm that is being built here will put a sizeable amount of money into our tax base. (I believe close to $5 million.) However her opponent, Ryan Zinke, is convinced we need to continue pushing oil and gas. Once again, I ask you to check out who is funding the campaigns and which candidate is looking out for our future.

When voting, I look at the candidates’ records, policies, and do my homework. I don’t look at the initial that accompanies their names. I have voted for and still vote for candidates from both major parties. I vote with the future of my grandchildren in mind. They deserve a country that is living up to the Declaration of Independence and preserving our Constitution. Their future is in our hands and how we vote will determine that future!

Sharon Morehouse



Let other people know how you feel and what you think with a letter to the editor. Letters are subject to editing for libel and good taste, and should be limited to 400 words or less.

All letters must be signed, include a physical address of the submitter, and a telephone number where the writer can be reached during the day. Letters from Beaverhead and Madison counties will be given first preference, while those from outside the area will be considered if, in the view of the editor, they are of local interest. Bring or mail your letter to: 31 S. Idaho Street · P.O. Box 911 · Dillon, MT 59725 or e-mail