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Montana politics, elections and legislative news

Naarah Hastings has been appointed to fill a vacant Billings House seat

A new Republican lawmaker has been appointed to fill a seat that was left vacant last week by former Rep. Mallerie Stromswold of Billings. Stromswold resigned citing logistical challenges and backlash from her party when she voted apart from the majority.

Yellowstone County commissioners have appointed Rep. Naarah Hastings to represent House District 50 in central Billings. Hastings is a business owner who has not previously served in the Legislature.

Republican Speaker of the House Matt Regier said that he’s looking forward to having all seats in the chamber filled. Two other Republican representatives have left the House since the beginning of the session, one who moved to the state Senate and another who resigned due to health reasons.

Former Billings Rep. Mallerie Stromswold resigned two weeks into the 68th Montana Legislature citing logistical challenges and backlash from the Republican party when she voted apart from the majority.

Shaylee began covering state government and politics for Montana Public Radio in August 2020. Originally from Belgrade, Montana, she graduated from the University of Montana’s journalism program and previously worked as a reporter for the Bozeman Daily Chronicle and UM’s Legislative News Service. Please share tips, questions and concerns by emailing shaylee.ragar@mso.umt.edu.