Montana Public Radio

Shared State

Saturdays at 9:30 a.m. on Montana Public Radio

A podcast about what’s driving Montana’s 2020 elections, and where the outcomes could lead us.

If you’ve turned on the TV in Montana recently, you’ve probably been bombarded with advertisements propping up or tearing down candidates for political office. Each contender claims they’re the best choice to uphold “Montana values.”

But what does that mean? Who is that promise for? And how do those unspoken values shape Montana’s politics?

In the new podcast Shared State, Montana Free Press, Montana Public Radio and Yellowstone Public Radio will bring listeners along for a deeper look at the most important issues on the ballot. The nine-episode series debuts Sept. 8, 2020 and will culminate just before Election Day.

Listen on air Saturdays at 9:30 a.m. on Montana Public Radio or Thursdays at 6 p.m. on Yellowstone Public Radio.

 

The 2020 election is over in Montana. Who won, what do the results say about Montana, and where are we headed?

In this final episode of Shared State, Montana Public Radio News Director Corin Cates-Carney, Yellowstone Public Radio News Director Nicky Oullet, and Montana Free Press Executive Director John Adams break down the results of Tuesday’s election. Listen now on Shared State.

What can we learn from the ways political corruption shaped Montana's past? And how can we keep up with all the special interests trying to influence voters today?

Listen now on Shared State Episode 09: "For This And Future Generations"

Montana’s mask mandate was put into effect for the health of everybody in the state, collectively. But those mask protests are all about the rights of solitary citizens. Beneath the surface of this conflict, there are competing ideas about the role of the individual in society as a whole. That tension plays out in Montana politics in all kinds of ways. When we vote for candidates this fall, we’re also casting our ballots for particular ideas about how government should impact peoples’ lives.

This is Shared State episode eight: “To Secure The Blessings Of Liberty.” How do we weigh the individual and the collective when we talk about freedom, choice and rights?

For the first time, almost every county in Montana is using all-mail in ballots this election season. Voters can still drop off their ballots in person if they want. But experts say mailing ballots is the best way to make the election accessible during the pandemic. This new system is bringing with it all kinds of uncertainties about logistics, reliability and the timeframe of the results. Still, election officials are trying to figure out how to make it work for everybody.

This is Shared State, a podcast about what's driving Montana's 2020 elections and where the outcomes could lead us. This week, "Equality of Opportunity."

Individually, our decisions about where to live and what to do for work shape our lives profoundly. The way Montanans answer those questions collectively, quite literally defines the future of our state. Montana has plenty of selling points. Whether you're a fifth generation resident or a new arrival who's lived here six months. But the limits of our rural economy, like lower wages and fewer jobs in specialized fields, are also downsides. This state of ours is a great place to live. But it can be a hard place to make a living. And of course, if you're a politician looking for votes, that's a natural thing to campaign on.

Learn more now on Share State episode six, "Desiring to Improve The Quality of Life."

National parks, jagged peaks, sprawling forests; Montana is home to more than 30 million acres of public land. Our shared lands are beloved by many Montanans, and a huge draw for tourists from around the world. But just because those lands exist doesn’t mean people can actually get to them. When public land and private property collide, real conflicts over access arise. And that’s a sticking point in this year’s race for governor.

Montana Public Radio’s Charles Bolte explores what candidates are really talking about when they say they’re “for access,” and if that political rhetoric matches up with the issues Montanans are actually facing.

Listen now on Shared State Episode 05: The Grandeur Of Our Mountains And The Vastness Of Our Rolling Plains

Talking about Montana's environment, our public lands and waterways, is one of the fastest ways for politicians to gain credibility here. After all, about a third of the land in this state belongs to you and me. Big, sprawling swaths of natural beauty are a defining feature of Montana. So much so, the preamble to the Constitution goes on at length about the state's landscape. The quiet beauty of our state. The grandeur of our mountains. The vastness of our rolling plains.

But when politicians talk about protecting our outdoor heritage in Montana, what exactly are they protecting and whose interests are they serving?

Shared State Episode 03: Grateful To God

Sep 15, 2020

Delegates included a nod to religion when they wrote Montana’s constitutional preamble. Decades later, ideas about God, faith and morality continue to influence how lawmakers approach policy issues. Specifically: access to abortion and civil rights for LGBTQ people.

Shared State Episode 02: 'We The People Of Montana'

Sep 9, 2020

When we say "We the people of Montana," who do we really mean? Who’s included, who’s left out, and what’s that mean this November? Listen now on Shared State, a podcast about what's driving Montana's 2020 elections and where the outcomes could lead us.

Shared State Episode 01: Preamble

Sep 8, 2020

In case you haven't been turning on the TV or opening the paper, we're in the thick of campaign season and there are big, competitive races up and down the ticket, some of which could flip the governor's office red or turn our whole congressional delegation blue. Money is pouring into these races from around the country, and the stakes are high.

But this election is also about something deeper: What the candidates say they care about and how those ideas could impact the rest of us. From Montana Public Radio, Yellowstone Public Radio and Montana Free Press, this is Shared State, a podcast about what's driving Montana's 2020 elections and where the outcomes could lead us.

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