Author

Darrell Ehrlick

Darrell Ehrlick

Darrell Ehrlick is the editor-in-chief of the Daily Montanan, after leading his native state’s largest paper, The Billings Gazette. He is an award-winning journalist, author, historian and teacher, whose career has taken him to North Dakota, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Utah, and Wyoming.

COMMENTARY

The voters can speak just fine for themselves, Mr. Knudsen

By: - June 17, 2021

In a rather extraordinary interview with the Montana Free Press, state Attorney General Austin Knudsen said that he wasn’t elected to please the Helena legal elites. That makes me question whether he’s ever been to Helena. “I guess I’m more concerned about what the voters of Montana think than, you know, a handful of former […]

Study shows Glacier, Yellowstone contribute more than $600 million to local economies

By: - June 15, 2021

Even with a decline in tourism from the pandemic, visitors to Yellowstone National Park spent roughly $444 million in local regions in 2020, and those in Glacier National Park spent an estimated $204 million the same year, according to a new report from the National Park Service. The report details the economic impact both parks […]

Hot, dry, windy: Montana weather unseasonably dangerous for a couple of days

By: - June 15, 2021

For the next day or so — but maybe longer — Montana’s weather is being, well, Montanan. In a state that frequently sees weather shifts from heat to snow and then back, the scorching hot weather that has gripped the central and eastern part of the state should subside by Wednesday and Thursday, bringing heat […]

Chief Justice gets top award from Gonzaga Law School

By: - June 14, 2021

Chief Justice Mike McGrath is the recipient of a 2021 Gonzaga Law Medal, the highest recognition given by the Gonzaga School of Law. The Gonzaga Law Medal is bestowed annually by the School of Law during Spring Commencement. The award is given to deserving individuals who have distinguished themselves in the service of justice through […]

Free star party at Pompeys Pillar

By: - June 14, 2021

Pompeys Pillar is having a free star party on June 18 from 7:30 to 11:30 p.m., so that star gazers, history buffs and photographers can witness the Big Sky during the summer. The National Monument will host Stuart Snyder and Steven Wiles, professors of physics at Montana State University Billings and astrophotographer Phil Hosey. Stars […]

Tester urges bipartisan legislation instead of blowing up the filibuster

By: - June 11, 2021

Sen. Jon Tester didn’t leave the farm in Big Sandy to do nothing in the United States Senate. But with partisan gridlock and Senate’s filibuster rule, which has been invoked to stymie much legislation, Tester said there may come a time when his support for “Rule 22” — the Senate’s policy that allows a minority […]

Tester introduces legislation aimed at making meat, poultry industry more accountable

By: - June 11, 2021

When Jess Peterson of the United States Cattlemen Association was looking back at how long it has taken to get legislation on the meatpacking industry introduced, he was amazed. In 1920, Congress had been concerned about the consolidation of power among meatpackers. At the dawn of the Warren Harding administration, there were five big packers, […]

Is a firefighter a firefighter: Billings says airport crews shouldn’t get firemen benefits

By: - June 11, 2021

The job title is “Airport Firefighter.” They drive large firefighting trucks that cost nearly $1 million. They are required by federal law to provide protection in case of structure fires or airplane crashes. The emblems on their trucks read, “Airport Fire and Rescue.” But the City of Billings says that a force of city employees […]

Concurring opinion condemns actions of Knudsen, legislature

By: - June 10, 2021

While the Montana Supreme Court settled the issue of whether Senate Bill 140 is constitutional — and whether the governor can appoint judges directly — the court took up one other piece of business in its 49-page ruling on Thursday. Six justices agreed with the courts’ ruling that SB140 is constitutional, with Justice Laurie McKinnon […]

Court upholds constitutionality of SB140

By: - June 10, 2021

In a decision that was as much historical as it was legal, the Montana Supreme Court ruled 6-1 that Senate Bill 140, which abolished the judicial nomination commission and clears the path for the governor to appoint judges directly, fits within the framework of the state’s constitution and was therefore legal. Justice James Jeremiah Shea […]

COMMENTARY

Lawmakers need to keep pushing PSC for more answers

By: - June 10, 2021

Pause with me, if you will, to consider what Legislative Auditors reported Monday about the Public Service Commission: That documents were falsified, procedures were ignored and the state of things was so precarious that it could come to no professional conclusion as to the financial condition among those charged with overseeing arguably the most complex […]

Secretary of State: Voting rights lawsuit should be dismissed

By: - June 9, 2021

Attorneys for Secretary of State Christi Jacobsen have filed a response to a lawsuit brought by the Montana Democrat Party and resident Mitch Bohn, arguing the case should be dismissed because it lacks any specific examples of how two recently passed voting laws in Montana would harm residents’ constitutionally-protected suffrage. The lawsuit, filed in Yellowstone […]