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Congratulations! You’ve Been Paying Baucus’s Girlfriend’s Salary

As if it wasn’t enough for the taxpayers (and the economy) to get reamed by Max Baucus on Medicare Part D and his Senate Finance Committee health care bill, the LA Times is reporting that Max Baucus nominated his girlfriend for the US Attorney job:

The Montana Democrat and his former state office director Melodee Hanes began their relationship in the summer of 2008 after Baucus separated from his wife, Ty Matsdorf told The Associated Press late Friday.

Baucus nominated Hanes for the U.S. attorney post in March. But she later withdrew, saying she had been presented with other opportunities she couldn’t pass up.

If Baucus and Hanes began their relationship “in the summer of 2008,” she was still picking up a check from you through March of 2009:

Employing Office Start date End date Position Amount Notes
Senate Finance Committee 12/10/08 12/19/08 Senior Adviser $ 3,111.09
Sen. Max Baucus (D-MT) 10/01/08 03/31/09 † State Director/Senior Counsel $ 54,722.14 † to Dec 9 and from Dec. 20
FY 2009 subtotal: $57,833.23
Sen. Max Baucus (D-MT) 04/01/08 09/30/08 State Director/Senior Counsel $ 69,666.60
Senate Finance Committee 11/27/07 11/29/07 Senior Counsel $ 895.83
Sen. Max Baucus (D-MT) 10/01/07 03/31/08 † State Director/Senior Counsel $ 55,979.07 † to Nov. 26 and from Nov. 30
FY 2008 subtotal: $126,541.50

Baucus played a key part in negotiating Medicare Part D and opposed price negotiation. He and the White House are responsible for the PhRMA and other medical stakeholder deals, that preclude the country from being able to control soaring medical costs for the next decade. Jon Walker says that insurance costs alone for a family of 4 will increase $1,000 a year as a result of the “deals” Baucus has cut. In addition to destroying the middle class, as Jon notes:

Business in this country will not be able to compete internationally in 8 years if they are paying the equivalent of an extra $10,000 health care tax on each employee.

But Max Baucus himself has made out astonishingly well. He has received $3,882,881 in contributions from the health care sector alone since 1989. That’s quite a tidy sum.

But alas, it wasn’t enough. He needed you to pick up the tab for his girlfriend, too, who didn’t divorce her former husband until December 2008.

As Marcy notes, having a Wellpoint VP write his health care bill was certainly worse in terms of its impact on the country. But the Hanes “affair” illuminates Baucus’s sense of personal entitlement when it comes to dealing with taxpayer money, something that should be an issue for the Chairman of the Senate Finance Committee.

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Congratulations! You’ve Been Paying Baucus’s Girlfriend’s Salary

As if it wasn’t enough for the taxpayers (and the economy) to get reamed by Max Baucus on Medicare Part D and his Senate Finance Committee health care bill, the LA Times is reporting that Max Baucus nominated his girlfriend for the US Attorney job:

The Montana Democrat and his former state office director Melodee Hanes began their relationship in the summer of 2008 after Baucus separated from his wife, Ty Matsdorf told The Associated Press late Friday.

Baucus nominated Hanes for the U.S. attorney post in March. But she later withdrew, saying she had been presented with other opportunities she couldn’t pass up.

If Baucus and Hanes began their relationship “in the summer of 2008,” she was still picking up a check from you through March of 2009:

Employing Office Start date End date Position Amount Notes
Senate Finance Committee 12/10/08 12/19/08 Senior Adviser $ 3,111.09
Sen. Max Baucus (D-MT) 10/01/08 03/31/09 † State Director/Senior Counsel $ 54,722.14 † to Dec 9 and from Dec. 20
FY 2009 subtotal: $57,833.23
Sen. Max Baucus (D-MT) 04/01/08 09/30/08 State Director/Senior Counsel $ 69,666.60
Senate Finance Committee 11/27/07 11/29/07 Senior Counsel $ 895.83
Sen. Max Baucus (D-MT) 10/01/07 03/31/08 † State Director/Senior Counsel $ 55,979.07 † to Nov. 26 and from Nov. 30
FY 2008 subtotal: $126,541.50

Baucus played a key part in negotiating Medicare Part D and opposed price negotiation.  He and the White House are responsible for the PhRMA and other medical stakeholder deals, that preclude the country from being able to control soaring medical costs for the next decade.  Jon Walker says that insurance costs alone for a family of 4 will increase $1,000 a year as a result of the “deals” Baucus has cut.  In addition to destroying the middle class, as Jon notes:

Business in this country will not be able to compete internationally in 8 years if they are paying the equivalent of an extra $10,000 health care tax on each employee.

But Max Baucus himself has made out astonishingly well.   He has received $3,882,881 in contributions from the health care sector alone since 1989.  That’s quite a tidy sum.

But alas, it wasn’t enough.  He needed you to pick up the tab for his girlfriend, too, who didn’t divorce her former husband until December 2008.

As Marcy notes, having a Wellpoint VP write his health care bill was certainly worse in terms of its impact on the country.  But the Hanes “affair” illuminates Baucus’s sense of personal entitlement when it comes to dealing with taxpayer money, something that should be an issue for the Chairman of the Senate Finance Committee.

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Jane Hamsher

Jane Hamsher

Jane is the founder of Firedoglake.com. Her work has also appeared on the Huffington Post, Alternet and The American Prospect. She’s the author of the best selling book Killer Instinct and has produced such films Natural Born Killers and Permanent Midnight. She lives in Washington DC.
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