MTPR

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.

Lawmakers, reporters and other Montana Legislature accounts on twitter: Montana Legislature twitter list.

Ways to Connect

Corey Stapleton has entered the Montana Secretary of State race.
Courtesy Corey Stapleton

Five Republican candidates are vying to be Montana's next representative in the U.S. House.  

That crowded field of congressional hopefuls in this year's primary includes state Senator Matt Rosendale of Glendive, former state Senator Corey Stapleton of Billings, state Senator Elsie Arntzen of Billings, Drew Turiano of Helena and former state Senator Ryan Zinke of Whitefish.

Montana Democrats next month will choose one of two candidates who hope to become Montana's next representative in the U.S. House. Republican Congressman Steve Daines is leaving the House to run for the U.S. Senate seat vacated by former Senator Max Baucus and now held by John Walsh.

John Lewis and John Driscoll are competing for their party's nomination to advance to November's general election.

Edward O'Brien has more on the Democratic House race featuring two men with backgrounds that each says would serve Montanans well:

MT's budget on track

Mar 14, 2014

Analysts expect Montana’s budget surplus to be slightly higher than previous predictions.

The estimate comes from the Legislative Fiscal Division. It now predicts the state will have nearly $353 million left in the bank at the end of this budget cycle. That’s almost $6 million higher than estimates in December.

Conrad Republican Senator Llew Jones chairs the Legislative Finance committee, which looks at the budget between Legislative sessions. He said, overall, the budget is staying right about where it should.

State Capitol, Helena
Jacob Baynham, Community News Service, UM School of Journalism

 As Montana moves toward the June primary elections, a deep divide still exists between elements of the state legislature’s Republican caucus.

This split between moderate and conservative Republicans was most dramatically seen in the 2013 Montana Senate, where the GOP held a 29-21 majority over Democrats. The body almost seemed to have three caucuses, though, as a small group of Republicans regularly defied party leadership to side with Democrats on a number of key issues such as campaign spending law changes, school funding legislation, and state employee pension reform.

Dan Boyce

2013 began with a new governor and a new legislature - and wound down with a government shutdown. In-between there were headline-grabbing trials and home-destroying fires.

The MTPR news staff - Sally Mauk, Edward O'Brien, Dan Boyce and Katrin Frye - covered the issues and breaking news. In this feature, they take a look back at a year of drama and heartache, and political surprises.

Montana’s public employees now just need to wait for state agencies and unions to ratify a plan negotiated with Gov. Steve Bullock in order to receive their first base-pay raises in more than four years.

Governor Steve Bullock’s office is reaching out to Democratic Lawmakers to uphold his vetoes on some key bills from the 2013 Legislature,  including some bills that were initially supported by almost the entire legislative body.

Planned Parenthood of Montana filed a lawsuit Thursday against two measures restricting the abortion rights of minors, one just passed by the 2013 Legislature and the other passed by Montana voters in 2012.  

Natalie Maynor/Flickr

Montana lawmaker have until Monday to cast their votes on whether to override certain vetoes from Governor Steve Bullock.

Bullock vetoed the second highest number of bills in Montana history this year--a total of 71 bills.

Two dozen of those bills were passed by a 2/3rds  majority of the legislature, and thus meet the criteria for a potential veto override. The Secretary of State's office sends out polls on those bills, and if 2/3rds of both the House and Senate vote for them again the veto is overturned.

Bullock vetoes draw GOP criticism

May 8, 2013

Governor Steve Bullock has finished working through bills from the 2013 Legislative Session. Bullock signed 393 bills this session.

But Capitol Reporter Dan Boyce says he vetoed 71.  

 

In addition, check out this report from Matt Gouras of the Associated Press:

HELENA, Mont. (AP) — A legislative session that began with promises of compromise ended with a whole bunch of vetoes from Gov. Steve Bullock on Tuesday — and plenty of criticism from Republicans who argued the governor was undermining bipartisan efforts.

Pages