Democratic incumbents are generally none too happy when President Bush comes into their states to campaign for Republican challengers. But Sen. Max Baucus (D-Mont.) was so pleased, he bought full-page newspaper ads welcoming Bush to Montana.
After all, Baucus had been invited to appear with Bush during the president's stopover in Billings last week. It is cost-beneficial to the national GOP for the White House to include an official, nonpartisan event -- be it a tree planting or an anti-drug rally -- whenever Bush is making a campaign stop. That way taxpayers can subsidize part of the the trip.
After telling several hundred Republicans at a $100-a-plate breakfast how much he needed Lt. Gov. Allen Kolstad, who is challenging Baucus, Bush traveled across town to deliver an anti-drug speech to several thousand youngsters. Baucus was among those sharing the stage with the President.
Baucus has introduced legislation in the Senate that would, among other things, increase the number of drug enforcement agents in Montana -- a point Baucus made in his newpaper ad.
Baucus spokesman Paul Risley said the senator scored a few more points with the ad by lobbying Bush on the farm bill, where they differ, and thanking Bush for support in other areas.