Montana Ex-Governor Wants You to Know That He'd Be A Very Strong Candidate If He Ran for Senate

Reporting on Politics and Policy.
Feb. 20 2013 1:52 PM

Montana Ex-Governor Wants You to Know That He'd Be A Very Strong Candidate If He Ran for Senate

Not news: A new Public Policy Polling shows former Montana Gov. Brian Schweitzer leading Sen. Max Baucus by 19 points in a primary. Baucus, who could easily be portrayed as an architect of Obamacare (because he was!), struggles against likely Republican challengers. Schweitzer does not. Makes sense.

News: Schweitzer likes this poll enough to share it with his Facebook fans.

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Schweitzer's been a Netroots/left hero for the better part of a decade, ever since he nearly upset Sen. Conrad Burns in a longshot 2000 race. In 2008, he gave a DNC speech that, by general agreement, outshone soon-to-be Sen. Mark Warner's keynote, and ever since, Democratic activists with Montana ties have daydreamed about a Schweitzer bid for the Senate or (why not?) presidency. The old, forgotten "Netroots" model, exemplified by Jim Webb, Jon Tester, and Paul Hackett, was not of an easily identifiable liberal. It was of an all-American badass who could get away with liberal positions.

David Weigel is a Slate political reporter. You can reach him at daveweigel@gmail.com, or tweet at him @daveweigel.