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Montana politics, elections and legislative news

Lieutenant Governor Angela Mclean Leaving Her Post

Lieutenant Governor Angela Mclean
Dan Boyce
Lieutenant Governor Angela Mclean

Lieutenant Governor Angela Mclean is leaving her post after less than two years on the job. McLean got the job in 2014 after John Walsh left for the U.S. Senate to replace Max Baucus.

Now McLean’s leaving, too, taking a post with the state Commissioner on Higher Education as the “director of American Indian and minority achievement and K-12 partnerships.”

McLean is a veteran educator with experience starting as a classroom teacher in Anaconda, eventually serving as chair of the State Board of Regents. In her new post she will lead the University System’s outreach to the state’s seven tribal nations, a cause she’s championed throughout her career.

“What matters for our Native students matters for other students, and what matters for native population matters for the rest of our population, and I think I've been a voice for that.”

McLean says she wasn’t unhappy in the number-two spot.

“I loved every single second of serving the people of the great state of Montana and I worked tirelessly every single day from the minute I got up until the minute I went to bed at night.”

Governor Steve Bullock will now have to look for a new lieutenant, and potential 2016 running mate.  But he says McLean was not forced out.

“This wasn’t a reset for reelection or anything like that.”

State Republican chair Jeff Essman said in a statement that McLean’s departure raises questions about Bullock’s leadership, and he called on the Governor to select her replacement in an open process, not in secret.

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