Montana Public Radio

Jim Rice

Montana Supreme Court Chief Justice Mike McGrath.
Josh Burnham / Montana Public Radio

Gov. Steve Bullock Wednesday issued a directive aimed at curbing the spread of COVID-19 in Montana’s Correctional facilities. But it was dismissed as too little, too late by the American Civil Liberties Union of Montana and disability rights advocates.

The Montana Supreme Court weighed in late in the afternoon.

Downtown Libby, MT.
libbymt.com

The Montana Supreme Court ruled largely in favor of roughly 1,200 plaintiffs Wednesday that say BNSF railway should be held liable for its part in contaminating Libby with asbestos. But, the court didn’t outline exactly what activities the railway could be held liable for, and to what extent.

Pistol stock photo.
(PD)

The Montana Supreme Court today ruled that a Missoula ordinance that would have expanded background checks to private gun sales violates state law. The opinion overturns a lower court’s ruling, and sides with Attorney General Tim Fox's position. 

Gavel.
(PD)

The Montana Supreme Court Wednesday struck down a 2015 state law allowing tax credits for donations to private religious schools.

The court’s 5-2 ruling voids the dollar-for-dollar tax credit, up to $150, which passed, largely along party lines, out of the 2015 Montana Legislature.

Councilman Bryan Von Lossberg addresses a rally in favor of a Missoula takeover of the city's drinking water in March of 2015
Josh Burnham

Montana’s Supreme Court yesterday handed the city of Missoula a win in the legal battle to take ownership of the city’s drinking water system.

General Election Results 2014

Nov 4, 2014

Election results for 2014 Montana and national races.

Update 10/28/14
Read the apology letter from Stanford and Dartmouth here

Lawyers representing Stanford University spoke with Montana’s commissioner of political practices today about a controversial campaign mailer.

That flyer, sent to about 100,000 Montanans last week, used the state seal without permission, and purports to show the political leanings of those running for two seats on the state supreme court. Supreme court races in Montana are by law non-partisan.

MSU-B Poll Shows Daines Pulling Away, Zinke With Slight Lead

Oct 17, 2014
Rep. Ryan Zinke.
Kaci Felstet

The top races in Montana look like they’re going red according to the state’s only public opinion poll released Friday, with the U.S. House race much closer than the Senate.

The poll of 410 Montanans gave Republican Ryan Zinke a 7-point lead in the race for the state’s sole U.S. House seat. Zinke garnered the support of 39.8 percent of all respondents support while his Democratic opponent, former aide to U.S. Sen. Max Baucus John Lewis, scored 32.9 percent.

There are pretty sharp differences in the candidates running for the two Montana Supreme Court seats being contested this fall. They came out at a candidate forum in Missoula on Tuesday.

One of the big issues at the forum was campaign financing, both for this year’s Supreme Court race and for elections in general.

The candidates talked about the 2010 Citizens United case in the US Supreme Court. It allowed unlimited independent corporate spending in federal elections. The high court applied that ruling to state elections in 2012.

Montana Supreme Court Candidates Debate

Sep 24, 2014
Montana Supreme Court
Montana Supreme Court

Montana's Supreme Court candidates faced off Tuesday night in a forum at the University Of Montana Law School. Sitting Justice Mike Wheat is running against former Montana solicitor general Lawrence Van Dyke, and incumbent Justice Jim Rice faces Billings Attorney and Podiatrist David Herbert. Listen to the entire the debate at the link above.