By Dustin Hurst | Watchdog.org
HELENA — Barrett Kaiser strikes again.
Citizens for Strength and Security Fund, a federal nonprofit Kaiser operates from his Billings office, released two new attack ads last week.
Both ads play off Rehberg sponsoring House Resolution 1505, which critics have called a “federal land grab.” The measure gives the U.S. Department of Homeland Security “operational control” of all lands within 100 miles of America’s borders with Canada and Mexico, and allows the federal agency to ignore certain federal laws.
The measure allows Homeland Security to conduct all necessary operations within the 100-mile zone, including constructing fences, flying unmanned drones and building “forward operating bases.”
In one ad, a narrator discusses the predator drones’ ability to read licenses from high in the sky, then ties that to Rehberg’s bill. “If Denny Rehberg gets his way in Congress, government aircraft could soon be reading yours,” the narrator warns.
The second spot strikes a similar, Orwellian theme, knocking the Republican congressman for treating Montana as “just another place on a map.”
“To protect your rights, tell Congressman Rehberg government fences and drones are wrong for Montana,” the narrator says.
Rehberg stands by the legislation, maintaining it only applies to federal lands and gives Homeland Security preeminence over all other federal agencies.
“It has nothing to do with any kind of land grab,” Rehberg told KECI-TV on March 1. “It’s federal properties only and it’s just saying, ‘Let the Border Patrol and customs agents have access to federal property.’”
Kaiser and a host of involved leftist groups continue to hammer at Rehberg’s sponsorship of the bill.
Citizens for Strength and Security Fund is a nonprofit with a designation that shields its donors from public light. Other federal disclosures, however, reveal ties to the big labor lobby.
Kaiser also is serves as the treasurer for Montana Hunter Anglers Action!, another front group. While the name implies local, homegrown status, MHAA money comes from the League of Conservation Voters, a heavyweight in environmental politics.
Tester will not discuss his relationship to Kaiser, even though the senator’s campaign and the former aide launched similar anti-Rehberg attacks within days of each other.