Montana Public Radio

Capitol Talk

Fridays at 6:44 p.m. during the Montana Legislature

"Capitol Talk," our weekly legislative news and analysis program, appears on Fridays throughout the legislative session. MTPR's Sally Mauk is joined by Lee Newspapers State Bureau Chief Holly Michels and UM Political Science Professor Rob Saldin.

Tune in to "Capitol Talk" online, or on your radio at 6:44 p.m every Friday during the session.

Ways to Connect

Capitol Talk: Guns, Voting And An Executive Power-Up

Feb 5, 2021

Gov. Greg Gianforte wants to increase the power of Montana's executive branch. Meanwhile, U.S. Congressman Matt Rosendale loses a battle with the national Republican leadership. And state Legislature moves toward making it harder to vote and easier to carry concealed guns.

Listen now on Capitol Talk with Sally Mauk, Holly Michels and Rob Saldin.

Capitol Talk: Tax Cuts, Pay Raises And A Republican Reversal

Jan 29, 2021

Gov. Gianforte's State of the State address was a mixture of Republican canon and bipartisan proposals. Lawmakers disagree whether an immigration bill has racist intent. A handful of Republicans change their minds about a bill to limit gender-affirming health care for transgender youth. And hefty raises for executive branch department heads raise some eyebrows.

Listen now on Capitol Talk with Sally Mauk, Rob Saldin and Holly Michels.

Capitol Talk: Abortion, Transgender Rights And Open Meeting Laws

Jan 22, 2021

This week on Capitol Talk, restrictions on abortion and trans rights dominate the House Judiciary Committee while that same committee's Republicans bar reporters from a meeting. All that as old fissures reappear in the Republican caucus.

Listen now on Capitol Talk with Sally Mauk, Holly Michels and Rob Saldin.

Montana's congressman votes as expected against impeachment, and Montana's two senators are having a very public spat. Gov. Gianforte has a rocky rollout of new orders lifting some pandemic restrictions. Attorney General Knudsen gets into a legal fight with a county attorney over local COVID-19 regulations. And university administrators keep a wary eye on a bill headed to the State Senate that would allow guns on campus.

Listen now on Capitol Talk with Sally Mauk, Holly Michels and Rob Saldin.

A Coup Attempt, A Budget Proposal And COVID Confusion

Jan 9, 2021
'Capitol Talk' is MTPR's weekly legislative analysis program.
Montana Public Radio

Montana lawmakers had very different takes on Wednesday's insurrection and the unfounded claims that fueled it. Gov. Gianforte released his budget proposal. And the Legislature started out with confusing and contradictory COVID-19 protocols.

Listen now on Capitol Talk, with MTPR's Sally Mauk, Lee Newspapers State Bureau Chief Holly Michels and UM Political Science Professor Rob Saldin.

'Capitol Talk': Legislature Wraps-Up; Campaign Season Heats Up

Apr 26, 2019

Tonight on Capitol Talk: Big bills that passed, and ones that didn't; the split in the Republican party — and its consequences; Gov. Bullock's pending big announcement; and Attorney General Tim Fox's fondness for chicken.

Tonight on Capitol Talk: It was hard-fought, but Medicaid expansion will continue in Montana, and Gov. Bullock is celebrating the big legislative win. Moderate Republicans once again tipped the scales on Medicaid and other big items. Greg Gianforte appears ready to leave Congress, giving Democrats a glimmer of hope of retaking the seat. The Legislature is ready to wrap up after the Easter break.

'Capitol Talk' is MTPR's weekly legislative analysis program.
Montana Public Radio

Bills to continue Medicaid expansion — and to buy more coal — have nothing in common, unless you want one, or both, to pass. That fight, and whether transparency is good or bad for legislating top our discussion tonight on Capitol Talk.

Tonight on Capitol Talk: The state budget sails through the Legislature; Gov. Bullock says he's "skeptical" about the "save Colstrip" bill; a Colstrip senator launches a vitriolic video slamming press coverage of the Colstrip bill; Attorney General Tim Fox opposes ending Obamacare; and three more candidates enter the races for governor and U.S. House. 

It's been a busy week at the Montana Legislature. Medicaid expansion and a bill to help NorthWestern Energy acquire more coal are still alive; A bill to fund preschool education is killed; And a bill to help find missing and murdered Native American women is passed, then killed, then revived. Learn more now on Capitol Talk with Sally Mauk, Rob Saldin and Holly Michels.

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