Wednesday, March 16, 2011

A few "Facts" about Northern's Biodiesel Funding

Any one read the article in last night’s HDN written by “Award Winning” senior “Journalist” Timmie Leeds under the headline Montana budget still without Northern Biodiesel.  This article, like several over the past couple of weeks, praised Senator Jonathan Windy Boy for “fighting for Northern’s Biodiesel program. While I am sure that Senator Windy Boy does indeed support the program I am having a hard time grasping why the HDN ran the story about him when the Senate wasn’t even the place where the bill was being heard. The bill in question was HB2 which is the funding bill for all state government expenditures. With regards to Northern’s Biodiesel program what really happened was that Representative Wendy Warburton brought forth an amendment to restore approximately $400,000 in funding to the program. Senator Windy Boy had absolutely NOTHING to do with yesterday’s hearing. After I had my WTH moment I decided to watch the hearing on the legislative website to ascertain the facts for myself. Imagine my surprise when I saw a marvelous performance by Representative Warburton pleading for the program’s funding and introducing her amendment to help Northern. Democrat Representative Tony Belcourt from Box Elder also is seen speaking in favor of Warburton’s amendment.

Why does the HDN, an alleged “professional” news organization, allow reporter Timmie Leeds to publish such obviously skewed “news” stories? I have posted the full amendment hearing below so you can judge for yourself. Video 1 shows Warburton making the amendment and pleading for Northern. Video 2 is the remainder of the testimony and video 3 is Warburton’s closing to the question. The Northern amendment failed on a 46-53 vote and HB-2 passed without the funds for Northern by a vote of 66 -32. See the votes here.

What really gets to me is the fact that “professional” reporter Leeds hates Ms Warburton and has said so to numerous people around town and then tries to portray that his articles are fair, balanced, factual and unbiased. That is just plain BS - his articles are nothing more than opinionated editorial pieces such as you would find on any biased opinion political blogs such as the Corrector that unashamedly slants their articles to portray our personal opinions.

As a side note to Thackeray, Jergeson, Peck and the gaggle of people that wrote letters to the editor during Warburton’s re-election campaign saying she voted against funds for Northern because she voted No to the passage of last sessions HB 2. I am wondering if you also will be writing letters against Representative Tony Belcourt because he voted against passage of HB 2 this go around even though he spoke in favor of Northern just minutes before the vote?

Read the HDN article – watch the hearing – tell me what you see!

Video 1

Video 2 - second part of hearing

Video 3 - Warburton's closing arguments


  1. One good thing I can say about Wendy is that she does seem to fight for what she believes in. Hope something works out for northern somehow.

  2. Those of us who support Northern are proud that Wendy and the others in our area including the delegation from Great Falls supported our campus and the work being done by Dean Kegel and his group. It is cutting edge and will have a major impact on Montana's economy. Thanks again Reps. Hansen, Belcourt, Stahl, Hollandsworth, Fitzpatrick, Hoven, Loney, O'Hara, Warburton and the many others.

  3. prof...

    wait til you got the money, bud...
    you might need it for the holes they dig elsewhere on your campus.
    some of the very same folk givith and taketh away...
    their passion ain't givith.

  4. All around the state Montana families have dug deep into their own budgets to make ends meet. Trimming out any extra they can in these lean times, but when the legislature tries to do the same thing it's because they are a bunch of uncaring monsters.
    I am sure that if the republicans had an unending supply of free money they would be promoting these programs, but folks the money comes from us and my wallet is pretty empty. If you are floating in money feel free to kick in for your favorite program.

  5. Wendy's amendment to the bill failed but she went ahead and voted for the overall bill. She didn't stand her ground. It will take Senate action at this point to restore the funding, thus the Windy Boy comments. Missing were the Hutton's comments on the issue.

    I'm no Tim Leeds fan but the article seemed to report the facts if your a somewhat objective reader.

    My argument is against subsidizing biodiesel to be grown on subsidized farms.


  6. Wendy did a great job promoting MSU-Northern like always.

    Hutton is in the Senate Magpie and this bill hasn't been heard there. I do wonder why the Havre paper always calls Windy Boy for comments when it is about house hearings. I also notice in the newspaper articles about the Wednesday tele-conferences with our legislatures that the Democrats never attend. What is up with that?

  7. it takes fuel to plant the "bio" in biofuel...
    it takes fuel to harvest...
    it takes fuel to ship...
    it takes fuel to provide power for the processing and the blend...
    then it is ten bucks a gallon...
    with lots of subsidy to get there.
    more subsidy to be affordable for consumers?