Austin Knudsen

Montana Capitol.
William Marcus / Montana Public Radio

Montana’s term-limited Attorney General, Tim Fox, is seeking the Republican party’s gubernatorial nomination. Two Democrats and two Republicans are now jockeying for Fox’s open seat.

Edward O’Brien has this preview of the two contested primary races for the state’s next chief legal officer.

Bullock Resists Spending Cuts; Republicans Try To Out-Trump The Competition

May 15, 2020

Gov. Bullock resists pressure to cut spending because of the economic fallout of the pandemic. Republican candidates sound familiar themes in their new campaign ads. Montana has a higher number of women running for office this year. And why some Democrats are thinking about voting for a Republican in the primary.

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

Gubernatorial debates get testy as the primary gets closer. The race for attorney general features four experienced candidates. House Republican candidate Matt Rosendale emphasizes familiar themes in a new campaign ad. Democrat Kathleen Williams is the fundraising leader in the House race. And how former Congressman Ron Marlenee left a lasting mark on Montana's Republican politics

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

Candidates for statewide office in Montana’s 2020 election raised more than $1.4 million since the start of the year, most of that coming over the last three months. Candidates were required to file campaign finance reports by Friday.

Most of the early money coming in is taking sides in the contested Republican primary for governor.

https://goo.gl/xhZVWE

The special session of the Montana Legislature got underway with lawmakers still at odds with the Bullock Administration on how to deal with the projected $227 million budget shortfall. One sticking point remains over a proposal to accept $30 million in exchange for extending the contract for a private prison in Shelby another 10 years should be part of the mix. 

Jackie Yamanaka

Republican legislative leaders are skeptical that the Bullock Administration's revenue projections are correct. Because of that they told reporters during a conference call Wednesday it is premature to talk about a special legislative session to address the state budget.


Failed Legislation Means Uncertainty For Colstrip's Future

May 4, 2017

When Montana's 2017 Legislature adjourned on April 28, Sen. Duane Ankney, R-Colstrip, ended almost right where he began.

At the session's beginning, he helped draw up several bills that would help his community, which is facing the impending closure of two out of four units at its massive coal-fired electrical plant. By the time lawmakers left the Capitol, many of the bills – aimed at easing impacts on jobs, tax revenues and real estate – were dead.

Supporters Of Bonding Hope To Gain 4 More Votes

Apr 26, 2017
Jackie Yamanaka

Supporters of a bonding bill are working to turn 4 “no” votes to “yes” in order to advance Senate Bill 367 out of the House of Representatives.  Bonding is the last major issue remaining before the 2017 Montana Legislature.

Representatives gave Senate Bill 367 a preliminary 63-to-37 vote last evening. However, the bill will need at least 67 votes on its 3rd and final reading to advance it back to the Senate because of changes to the bill. Passage is expected to expedite the conclusion of the 2017 Legislative session. 


Lawmakers Sit Down With Governor To Talk Bonding

Apr 25, 2017
Jackie Yamanaka

Lawmakers wrapped up Day 85 of their scheduled 90-day Legislative session with no agreement reached on a bonding package.

That morning, 11 legislators sat down with Governor Steve Bullock, Budget Director Dan Villa and other staff in the Governor's Conference Room to talk about possibilities. Specifically, what would it take to reach the 67 votes needed in the House to pass a bonding bill.

Among the bills put on the table were those dealing with abortion and charter schools. House Minority Leader Jenny Eck, D-Helena, said if those bills were part of the deal, the Republican majority would lose Democratic votes, which could doom bonding.


Jackie Yamanaka

The Republican-controlled House of Representatives rejected an attempt to revive a bonding measure that would pay for public school building projects, university buildings on 3 campuses, and help the Southwest Montana Veterans Home break ground.

Representative Mike Cuffe, R-Eureka, offered a technical motion to suspend the rules to reconsider his House Bill 645. It failed April 6, 2017 to get the votes necessary to be transmitted to the Senate.


Pages