Montana Public Radio

Jim Rice

An excerpt from Justice Jim Rice's concurring opinion on a lawsuit challenging the governor's authority to appoint judges to open benches directly. Rice wrote a concurring opinion, but included scathing criticism of the Legislature and Dept. of Justice.
https://juddocumentservice.mt.gov/getDocByCTrackId?DocId=355899

A Montana Supreme Court justice who voted in a 6-1 ruling to uphold a new law allowing the governor to appoint judges directly to open benches is also condemning Republican lawmakers and the state’s attorney general for their handling of the proceedings.

The Capitol dome in Helena, MT.
William Marcus / Montana Public Radio

Montana lawmakers continue their investigation into allegations of bias among members of the judicial branch. After a series of rapid developments, there’s a break in the action and it’s not clear what comes next. MTPR’s Shaylee Ragar shares her reporting with Freddy Monares.

Republicans and Democrats on a special legislative committee are at odds over dueling reports summarizing an ongoing investigation into Montana’s judicial branch.

The minority report from Democratic lawmakers refutes GOP claims of alleged judicial bias and misconduct, saying Republican lawmakers and the Republican-led executive branch are trying to smear the judiciary.

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.

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