August 4th, 2014
11:51 AM ET
4 months ago

Montana newspapers to Sen. Walsh: Drop out of Senate race now

Washington (CNN) – Under fire for plagiarism, Democratic Sen. John Walsh of Montana is now feeling the pressure at home.

Newspapers from the two largest cities in Montana are calling for Walsh to end his Senate campaign in light of charges that he plagiarized part of a paper needed to complete his master's degree at the Army War College.

"Plagiarism is a big deal. It is an act of deception that has serious consequences – not the least of these being a loss of trust," a Missoulian Sunday editorial declared. "At a minimum, he [Walsh] should drop out of the Senate race."

The Missoulian also called on Walsh to "resign his Senate seat immediately."

In its Sunday editorial, The Billings Gazette also urged Walsh to withdraw from the race, arguing that "haunted by a serious lapse in academic honesty, Walsh is finished as a U.S. Senate candidate."

"Having repeatedly said that he wants to do the honorable thing, Walsh should stop campaigning and do his utmost to serve Montanans well in the remainder of his brief Senate appointment," the editorial board wrote. "That is the honorable course."

The Gazette argued that Walsh should "finish the Senate job he already accepted."

The New York Times first reported in July that a review of Walsh's 2007 final paper suggests the Iraq war veteran "appropriated at least a quarter of his thesis on American Middle East policy from other authors’ works, with no attribution.”

Although Walsh's campaign has admitted the the paper's citations were "not all done correctly," they insisted the mistakes were "unintentional." In an interview with the Associated Press, Walsh partially blamed the mistakes on the fact that he was suffering from post-traumatic stress after his Iraq deployment.

The Defense Department's inspector general is examining the questions now surrounding Walsh's thesis.

Walsh, a former lieutenant governor who was appointed to the Senate after Max Baucus became ambassador to China, is up for election in November.

Before the charges of plagiarism, the senator faced an already tough race against Republican Rep. Steve Daines. The latest scandal further raises the likelihood of a Republican victory in Montana.


Filed under: 2014 • Montana
soundoff (19 Responses)
  1. Fair is Fair

    But... but... but.... the poor chap is suffering from PTSD. I'm certain that PTSD won't affect him or his duties as a US Senator. Hang in there, Walsh... you're a shoo-in for re-election.

    August 4, 2014 11:59 am at 11:59 am |
  2. wkndthg

    You mean step down right after rand paul???? Who did the same thing...

    August 4, 2014 12:07 pm at 12:07 pm |
  3. Rudy NYC

    Let's see how this plays out. Republican Senator is accused of several acts of plagiarism, and gets a slap on the wrist after blaming his staff for the mistakes. Democratic Senator is accused of plagiarism on a larger scale. Let's see how Republicans spin this all the way to the White House.

    August 4, 2014 12:17 pm at 12:17 pm |
  4. OBAMA - THE OPEN BORDERS PRESIDENT

    Sen. Walsh please feel free to stay in the race. All is well...

    August 4, 2014 12:21 pm at 12:21 pm |
  5. Sniffit

    And both of these conservative papers will welcome Rand Paul with open arms in 2016, guaranteed. IOKIYAR

    August 4, 2014 12:31 pm at 12:31 pm |
  6. Chris..E.Al

    Most all dems lie and accept it as normal behavior now days ? They run from the truth and just want to be abused and taken for a fool by their kings and show queens and very quick to defend nanny .

    August 4, 2014 12:37 pm at 12:37 pm |
  7. it must be said

    Kiss this Senate seta GOOD BYE Democrats. One in the bag, 5 to go!!

    August 4, 2014 12:38 pm at 12:38 pm |
  8. Name JK. SFL. THE GOP THE NATIONAL JOKE PARTY , WE WONT PASS ANYTHING AND STILLGET PAID

    Do what the low life republicans do and IGNORE the VOTERS WILL and the party of STUPID will cross the party's think your a republican because their so used to it!!!!

    August 4, 2014 12:38 pm at 12:38 pm |
  9. Name JK. SFL. THE GOP THE NATIONAL JOKE PARTY , WE WONT PASS ANYTHING AND STILLGET PAID

    I guess they should have Paul QUIT too . He is well known to be well practiced in the ART!!!

    August 4, 2014 12:41 pm at 12:41 pm |
  10. Marcus (from...?)

    It's not a matter of 'But Paul did it too!' (unless the Republicans take the bait).
    Plagiarism is plagiarism and if he did it, and he did it (no doubts about it), he should own it.
    Does he owns it?
    Is he facing the consequences for it?
    That's all it matters, his acts and his reaction to their consequences.

    August 4, 2014 12:47 pm at 12:47 pm |
  11. Abbey

    A War College thesis? These have a history of rubber stamps on them.

    August 4, 2014 12:47 pm at 12:47 pm |
  12. Tommy G

    Plagiarism is bad enough but to then lie about it and blame it on PTSD? You've got to be kidding me. That is a slap in the face to every veteran that is truly affected by PTSD. The guy is unfit to be a Senator. In this case, the D next to his name stands for Despicable.

    August 4, 2014 12:56 pm at 12:56 pm |
  13. Bill from GA

    If you have PTSD and commit a violent act, you might get a little sympathy.
    If you have PTSD and you are guilty of plagiarism, FORGET YOU!
    Especially if you are a Dem, huh?

    How long ago was this anyway? 7 years?

    August 4, 2014 01:10 pm at 1:10 pm |
  14. Dead Bear

    Funny but most Republicans I know wouldn't have college degrees if it weren't for plagiarism. I'll take it a step further and say that must Republicans I know wouldn't have a job if it weren't for nepotism.

    August 4, 2014 01:14 pm at 1:14 pm |
  15. just saying

    another lying, cheating democrat?! since when is 'news'? after all the obamacare lies, the whole country knows democrats are nothing by lying, corrupt thieves that pray on the low iq voters in our society. every single one of them should be thrown out, starting with this loser.

    August 4, 2014 01:16 pm at 1:16 pm |
  16. RUKIDDING

    REPUBLICAN Hypocrisy runs WILD! I guess they would accept it if he had been caught with a hooker like their Senator from Louisiana.

    August 4, 2014 01:35 pm at 1:35 pm |
  17. Tony D

    Bill from GA
    If you have PTSD and commit a violent act, you might get a little sympathy.
    If you have PTSD and you are guilty of plagiarism, FORGET YOU!
    Especially if you are a Dem, huh?
    How long ago was this anyway? 7 years?
    ---

    Is there a statute of limitations on dishonesty? I'm sure if they dug a little more into this guy they'd find more. Time to dig DEEP into all of the Democrat candidates! The party of liars, cheats and criminals has much to find!!

    August 4, 2014 01:35 pm at 1:35 pm |
  18. casual observation

    The absolute hypocracy is lost on the low I.q. gop voters, IMBS, from what I've seen from the four or five or you rwnj, your constantly dredging the bottom of the IQ barrel drumming up support, you know you can't win the smart vote, two kinds of people vote gop, rich, and stupid.

    August 4, 2014 01:50 pm at 1:50 pm |
  19. Rudy NYC

    just saying

    another lying, cheating democrat?! since when is 'news'? after all the obamacare lies, the whole country knows democrats are nothing by lying, corrupt thieves that pray on the low iq voters in our society. every single one of them should be thrown out, starting with this loser.
    ------------------------------
    Lying? What about your own lie? Weren't you supposed to self-deport if Obama got re-elected? Yeah, thought we forgot.

    August 4, 2014 01:50 pm at 1:50 pm |