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Montana politics, elections and legislative news

Matt Rosendale 2020 Election Questionnaire

Rep. Matt Rosendale
Corin Cates-Carny
Montana Public Radio

Montana Public Radio is gathering information on all statewide primary candidates to publish as a resource for our audience. We asked all the statewide candidates to respond to the following questions via email, limiting their answers to 300 words per question. These are their unedited responses.

U.S. House candidate Matt Rosendale:

What is your full name as it will appear on ballots?

Matthew Rosendale

What is your age?


Where do you live?

Glendive, MT

What is your education background?

Queen Anne’s County High School

What is your current occupation?

Montana State Auditor, Commissioner of Securities and Insurance

Why are you running for this particular public office?

Now more than ever, Montana needs a proven conservative leader who will work hard and put the needs of Montanans first. With only one Congressional District, it is essential that we elect a candidate who will stand up and fight for the interests of our state. I am committed to supporting our business community and working for all Montanans.

What makes you qualified to hold this position?

I have an extensive background in both business and real estate. I served in the Montana State Legislature from 2011 until 2016, when I was elected as State Auditor. During my tenure in the legislature I also served as the Senate Majority Leader.

I am humbled to have the opportunity to serve the people of Montana and I believe that I have accomplished a great deal in service to our state, both in my time as a member of the State Legislature and while leading the Auditors Office.

As your State Auditor, I reduced insurance premiums in the individual market by 15%, protected pre-existing conditions, and have never accepted a taxpayer funded pay raise. I have a proven track record of conservative leadership and results—and that’s what our state needs right now. As a member of the State Land Board I’ve cut onerous regulations which burdened our businesses and expanded access to over 45,000 acres of state public lands, while protecting environmentally sensitive areas and putting our natural resources to work for our state.

I know how to get things done, and if I make a promise, I keep it—which is why I am the only candidate for Montana’s Congressional seat that is endorsed by President Trump. Like President Trump, I keep my promises, and if you elect me to be your representative in Congress, I promise to always listen, to represent our principles, and to always defend our Montana way of life.

What are three policy issues that distinguish you from your opponent(s)?

If elected, my first policy priorities would be to work to rebuild our economy, control federal spending, and enhance our healthcare system.

There is no question that the ongoing pandemic has been economically devastating, and I think my extensive business background and proven track record of getting conservative results as an elected official set me apart from the other candidates in this race.

I believe we will need to focus on rebuilding our economy and that means removing regulatory red tape for businesses, reining in out-of-control federal spending, and keeping government accountable. The current list of unnecessary spending that was secretly passed as part of the COVID-19 emergency package was unfortunately not an anomaly. If elected, one of my first tasks will be to propose the “Truth in Legislation Act”. This legislation would limit the contents of a bill to only issues described in the bills title, which would help eliminate the practice of “buying” votes, reduce spending, and promote government transparency.

As State Auditor, I have successfully expanded access to healthcare and reduced insurance premiums, while simultaneously cutting operating costs by 23%. I’d like to build on this success in Congress. I believe that everyone, including those with pre-existing conditions, should have access to quality, affordable healthcare—and that begins with lowering the cost of prescription drugs for our seniors and others who rely on prescription medications every day. Additionally, we need to expand Health Savings Accounts to allow individuals who pay out of pocket for health insurance and other healthcare expenses to access the same tax-exempt status as those who receive benefits from their employer.

What are the greatest issues facing Montana that have gone unsolved by elected officials and how would you address them?

While many of our elected officials have taken steps to improve veterans benefits and access to healthcare, there is still much work to be done. As Montana’s Congressman, I would fight tooth-and-nail to make sure our veterans are receiving the benefits they have been promised. They certainly kept their promise to our nation, the very least we can do is keep ours.

I also believe we need to continue to build on the great work that President Trump has done to remove unnecessary red tape and unleash our natural resource industries. Developing our natural resources and protecting our environment are key components of creating economic growth and are not mutually exclusive—both play a critical role in ensuring the health of our economy. Now more than ever, in order to get our country’s economic engine back on track, we will need to make sure we are not bogging down businesses with duplicative regulations.

During my time as State Auditor, we have been able to make many positive changes towards improving access to care and protecting pre-existing conditions, but federally, there are still many roadblocks that are making it more difficult for people to access care and making healthcare more expensive—which is one of the reasons I am running for Congress. I want to build on the results I have achieved here in Montana, on the federal level. I have been able to cut my agency’s operating expenses while reducing insurance premiums, protecting pre-existing conditions, and increasing efficiency. We need to do the same thing in Washington and make the government work more efficiently for the people of Montana.

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