Bruce Lohof

Recent Posts

Opinion: The unspoken crux of the health-care debate

Bruce Lohof

Seven years after the passage of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and more than six months after the election of a repeal-and-replace majority in Washington, the health care quarrel remains unresolved. And now it’s leaking into Montana’s special congressional election. Here’s why. Most Montanans believe in universal health care; many of them don’t want to admit it, though, and most don’t realize that they’re already paying for it. (more…) Continue Reading →

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The irony of the Real ID

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Like the footfalls of a villain in a thriller movie, Montana’s Real ID imbroglio comes ever closer … and ever more ominous. Another footfall, closer and more ominous than the earlier ones, was heard on Jan. 5 when Washington declared that “Montana is not in compliance with the Real ID Act and Federal agencies will not accept driver’s licenses” issued by Helena. (more…) Continue Reading →

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Opinion: ‘Entitlement’ critics, please meet Jane Doe

Politicians, pundits and other smart alecks make me peevish whenever they bloviate about “entitlements.”

And more annoyance is just around the corner as campaign noise gives way to policy debate. How the entitlements arguments proceed is an open question. Paul Ryan, speaker of the House of Representatives and anti-entitlements smart-aleck-in-chief, favors reductions; President-elect Trump has been coy. (more…) Continue Reading →

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Opinion: Salvaged ‘justice’ act will have bad consequences

Lohof

On Wednesday, the U.S. Congress overrode President Obama’s veto of the so-called “Justice Against Sponsors of Terrorism Act” (JASTA). The act permits 9/11 families to sue the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia for any role that it might have played in the tragedy. Sadly, Montana Sens. Steve Daines and Jon Tester and Rep. Ryan Zinke supported the override. (more…) Continue Reading →

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Cafe’s reopening sparks memories of 10th Ave. Grocery

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Joanie Swords has reopened Harper & Madison. That’s a good thing. What “Yellowstone Valley Woman” (one of my favorite local publications) has called a “quaint eatery … for people of all walks looking for baked goods made in-house, coffee, lunch and camaraderie” had been closed for remodeling since Christmas Eve. Look for Harper & Madison on 10th Avenue North—sunny side of the street—between North 31st and North 32nd streets. (more…) Continue Reading →

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Opinion: The trouble with Trump’s ‘visa-tracking system’

Lohoff

In Phoenix earlier this week—as on his official website—Donald Trump promised “enhanced penalties for overstaying a visa. Millions of people come to the United States on temporary visas,” he claims, “but refuse to leave.” Trump’s solution? “Completion of a visa tracking system.”

Each year, 45 million nonimmigrant visitors come to these shores. The Department of Homeland Security estimates that 1.17 percent of them overstay their visas. So, for starters, Trump’s “enhanced penalties” are a solution is search of a problem. Continue Reading →

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Opinion: On the question of refugees, don’t kick the cat

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Late last month, 55 Montana legislators insisted that Gov. Steve Bullock “use all legal means to block or resist the placement of Syrian refugees in our great state at this time.”

They are in good company. Well, in some sort of company: at last count 31 state governors, a majority of U.S. presidential aspirants and the U.S. House of Representatives have agreed. They have all reminded me of the do-it-yourselfer who, while hanging a picture on the wall, misses the nail but hits his thumb. In his pain—and rage—he kicks the cat that is snoozing beneath the ladder. We smile at his irrational response but we understand the outburst. Continue Reading →

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