Montana Public Radio

Steve Bullock

A 2020 Montana primary absentee ballot
Nicky Ouellet / Yellowstone Public Radio

The option for counties to conduct the November election by all-mall ballot will stay in place. That’s the ruling from a federal judge Wednesday following a challenge to the statewide directive from President Donald Trump’s campaign and state and national Republicans. 

Candidates for one of Montana’s U.S. Senate seats faced off Monday night in a debate hosted by MontanaPBS. The candidates traded barbs over how to approach a range of timely issues, including the U.S. Supreme Court vacancy, health care and coronavirus response.

Incumbent Republican Sen. Steve Daines and current Democratic Gov. Steve Bullock began the debate sparring over the U.S. Supreme Court vacancy left by the death of Associate Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg.

Montana's U.S. Senate candidates, Republican Steve Daines and Democrat Steve Bullock will face off in a debate on MontanaPBS.

Watch here or listen live starting at 7 p.m. September 28, 2020.

A federal judge in Montana has ousted President Trump's top public lands official.

The ruling blocks William Perry Pendley from continuing to serve as the temporary head of the Bureau of Land Management, a post he has held for more than a year.

The judge ruled in response to a lawsuit filed by Montana Gov. Steve Bullock who argued it's illegal for Pendley to lead the agency because he had never been confirmed by the Senate.

A Fair to Remember: County Fairs Weigh Risk of Outbreak Against Financial Ruin

Sep 25, 2020

Laura Stutzman had no doubts that this year’s Twin Falls County Fair should go on despite the pandemic still raging across the U.S. — and several outbreaks tied to such community fairs.

Montana Republican lawmakers are pushing forward with rule changes for the legislature that could tip the balance of power in some interim committee decisions and change the way new rules for statehouse operations are set. Democrats are calling foul and threatening a lawsuit over what they’re calling a power grab.

Republican members of the Joint House and Senate Rules Committee are polling the entire Montana Legislature on three new rules to govern their actions.

Montana’s governor says the state’s employment rate is in a healthier place compared to many other states after the coronavirus pandemic led to government mandated business closures earlier this year.

Some economists say it’s too soon to draw conclusions.

Governor Steve Bullock says Montana Department of Labor and Industry data show that the state has the sixth fastest job bounce back in the country.

A 2020 Montana primary absentee ballot
Nicky Ouellet / Yellowstone Public Radio

Attorneys for President Donald Trump’s campaign and the national and state GOP argued in federal court Tuesday against Montana Gov. Steve Bullock’s directive allowing for all-mail ballot voting this November. They made their case in U.S. District Court in Missoula for why they believe the directive should be blocked. The governor’s legal counsel dismissed their claims and argued that the directive needs to stay in place.

Montana Public Radio’s Shaylee Ragar shared her reporting on the case with MTPR's Corin Cates-Carney.

Edit 9/23: A former version of this story misspelled Amesh Adalja's name and it has been corrected.

As COVID-19 cases continue to trend upward in Montana, state health officials say they’re concerned that outbreaks could further stress the state’s already thin health care system.

Montana lead epidemiologist Stacey Anderson says the recent increase in COVID-19 cases is connected to schools reopening, social gatherings and clusters among populations in close quarters, like long term care homes and correctional facilities.

Montana’s two attorney general candidates sparred in Sunday’s debate, showcasing the sharp contrast between how the Republican and the Democrat each view the elected position.

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