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Carpet-bagging Republican Senate candidate Troy Downing’s recent rant against Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks is really just a symptom of how disgraceful the modern Republican Party has become.

Downing, a Californian who wants to buy a U.S. Senate seat with the help of Zinke, blasted FWP after it turns out he was buying resident tags while not actually a state resident. He used all the buzzwords of the Trumpians, calling the agency a “deep state” and pushing all that “drain the swamp” drivel we’ve heard so much of from Republicans.

What Downing ignores is the fact that FWP is staffed with biologists and wardens deeply committed to our public wildlife and hunting and fishing for all Montanans, not just the wealthy elite. These people have advanced degrees in wildlife science, and they work to protect our wildlife while managing it. Many of them could have gone into the corporate world and made tons of money, but they chose government careers to work for something they really care about.

What a sad statement from a guy who didn’t want to pay state income taxes, but wanted the benefits of being a Montana resident. And Downing is, in fact, typical of Republicans, who want all the government benefits that they think someone else should pay for.

Montanans see through this phony, and they certainly will at the ballot box later this year.

Vicki Dickinson