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Montana Politics

Keep up with the latest Montana politics, elections and Legislature news. Get updates on your radio during Morning and Evening Edition, on the web or via podcast any time.

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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?

Daines' Forest Management Bill Hear In Subcommittee

Sep 21, 2020

Montana Senator Steve Daines on Sept. 16 stumped for legislation he helped draft, saying more forest management would protect communities from wildfires.

Republican Daines presented his Emergency Wildfire and Public Safety Act of 2020 to the Senate Subcommittee on Public Lands, Forests, and Mining.

The candidates in Montana’s hotly contested Senate race are divided over how to handle the Supreme Court vacancy left by the death of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg.

In a written statement, Republican Sen. Steve Daines said the Senate should move forward with confirming President Donald Trump’s nominee, expected to be announced at week’s end.

Over the last month, more than $2 million has poured into the campaigns of Democrat Mike Cooney and Republican Greg Gianforte in the race for Montana’s governor’s seat.

A new report released Tuesday says around 60 percent of Montana businesses last year had at least one worker enrolled in Medicaid expansion. Enrollment in the health care program for low income adults has been on the rise for the last four months.

At a meeting in Bozeman, Barbara Wagner, chief economist of the Montana Department of Labor & Industry, said nearly 20 percent of the state’s entire workforce was enrolled in Medicaid at one point or another last year.

Democrats charge Republicans with shenanigans over the meeting of a legislative rules committee,  Montana Republican candidates get a boost from Vice-President Pence and new ads in the U.S. Senate race feature veterans.

Listen now on Campaign Beat with Sally Mauk, Rob Saldin and Holly Michels.

Montana Capitol.
Shaylee Rager / UM Legislative News Service

Republican lawmakers met Thursday to discuss changing the 2021 Legislature’s rules for operating amid the coronavirus pandemic. Democrats boycotted the meeting, saying it was illegitimate, and threatened legal action.

The candidates competing to be Montana’s next Secretary of State sparred in a weekend debate hosted by MTN News. The Democrat accused his Republican opponent of working for a corrupt administration and said he’ll clean up the Secretary of State’s office. The Republican stood by her work and experience and labeled her opponent clueless.

  • Republican Sen. Steve Daines, whose state depends heavily on fossil fuel revenues, says Montana needs to balance environmental protection with an energy economy.
  • A task force is expected to unveil a report soon to Gov. Steve Bullock, Montana’s Democratic Senate candidate, on proposals to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
  • Both candidates portray themselves as Montana’s best hope for preserving the state’s outdoor culture in this closely watched, high stakes Senate race.

Montana Gov.

Vice President Mike Pence flew into Montana Monday afternoon to stump for GOP candidates seeking election to high-profile offices.

Speaking to several hundred supporters at an outdoor venue near Belgrade, Pence touted President Donald Trump’s efforts to cut regulations, boost military spending and nominate conservative federal judges.

Pointing to several sheriffs in attendance, Pence also expressed support for law enforcement as protests for racial equality carry on across the U.S.

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