Steve Daines told delegates to the Republican National Committee Tuesday that his great-great grandmother came from Norway to homestead in Montana.
She was widowed at a young age and raised seven children on the farm, the congressional hopeful told the delegates in a brief talk.
Her tombstone read “Saved by Grace. ”
The words "Saved by Government" would never have crossed her mind. She put her faith in God, not government, he said.
Daines was one of dozens of people who spoke to the convention during its non-prime-time session Tuesday. It was an opportunity for party leaders to showcase candidates who are running for office around the country.
Daines, a successful Bozeman business, is challenging State Sen. Kim Gillan, D-Billings, in the Nov. 6 election for Montana’s lone congressional seat.
Daines told the crowd that this was not his first GOP convention. “In 1984, as a young delegate from the great state of Montana, I cast my vote for President Ronald Reagan in Dallas, ” he said.
Since then, he said, he helped build a business that created hundreds of jobs. He and his wife Cindy also became parents of four kids, he said.
“For the past 28 years, I have built businesses and created hundreds of jobs. My wife Cindy and I have been married for 25 years and are the parents of four great kids.
“Now, out-of-control spending, crushing debt and job-destroying regulations threaten our children's future, ” he said.
“Washington does not create jobs, the people do, ” he said.
For her part, Gillan noted that while Daines was in Tampa, she was talking to Montanas.
“While Daines spoke to a room of DC insiders, I am in MT talking to voters about my record as a problem solver, ” she tweeted.