FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
July 29, 2005
Contact: Neal Ullman, 406-254-2006
Lindeen Charges Rehberg For Failing Montanans and
(BILLINGS, Mont.) - Congressional candidate Monica Lindeen (D-Huntley) charged Congressman Dennis Rehberg with failing to stand up to his party leaders and abandoning an opportunity to re-open Malmstrom's runway. In the early hours of the morning on Friday, Rep. Rehberg had an opportunity to stand up to his party leadership and fight to keep the re-opening of Malmstrom's airstrip in the highway bill. Instead, he stood by silently while his party leadership stripped the provision from the bill. His simple objection - which is a right of each of the 435 members of congress - would have stopped this last minute agreement.
"When it came time to stand up for Malmstrom, Rep. Rehberg's silence was deafening," Lindeen said. "Montanans needed someone to fight for them in Congress. Unfortunately, last night, our current representative choose not to stand up for Malmstrom, not to set the record straight, and not to fight for Montana"
The provision to re-open the runway at Malmstrom Air Force Base was included in the highway bill by Senator Max Baucus and won praise from Senator Burns and Great Falls Mayor Randy Gray. Unfortunately, Rehberg stood by while members of his party, misunderstanding the provision, stripped the provision from the bill.
"Simply put, Rep. Rehberg let Great Falls down," said Lindeen. "Our senators and the governor have worked together and fought tirelessly for Malmstrom and the Montana Air National Guard.
It is a pity to have that work jeopardized by Rep. Rehberg's failure to stand up to his party leadership."
Monica Lindeen, the daughter and granddaughter of veterans, understands how important Montana's military presence is in defending America's liberty and bringing good-paying jobs to Montana. In the Montana legislature, Lindeen backed legislation to appropriate $100,000 to create a task force to conduct a mission assessment for military and national guard installations in Montana and to promote the establishment of new installations and expanded missions.
"This did not have to happen. This provision was stripped in the dark of night by members of congress who were misinformed about the issue," Lindeen said. "This happened because Rep. Rehberg did not stand up and make the case for Montana."