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.

Hero turned villain: MSU-Billings prof studies the motivations of the Jan. 6 insurrectionists

By: - July 16, 2023

If you want to understand what was happening to people participating in the Jan. 6 insurrection at the Capitol in Washington, D.C., Montana State University-Billings professor Paul Pope suggests that literature might hold one of the keys. In a new article published as part of the Wiley Online Library in the publication “Sociology Compass,” Pope […]


They had one job. And the Montana Legislature failed.

By: - July 13, 2023

It’s July 13: Do you know where your legislature is? Of course, they’re not in session. But while they were meeting for what seemed like a recklessly long time earlier this year, they waged a multifronted cultural war on the LGBTQ+ community, literally gutted environmental law, denied climate change, toyed with abolishing reservations, banned drag […]

Unions: Lee newspapers’ cuts mean less journalism and insulting readers’ intelligence

By: - July 9, 2023

In Montana, the state’s largest newspaper publisher, Iowa-based Lee Enterprises, has announced that it’s cutting the number of days it prints a newspaper to three and switching the delivery from paper carriers to the U.S. Postal Service in most locations, but the corporation promises the three print editions will have a “Sunday feel.” But in […]

Groups challenge Montana’s ‘drag ban’ in federal court

By: - July 7, 2023

A coalition of 10 ranging from a public school teacher to a brewery have filed a lawsuit in federal court challenging Montana’s expansive “drag ban” law, which not only outlaws any public drag performance, but targets nearly anyone in a costume for punishment and fines. The 2023 Montana Legislature passed House Bill 359, which was […]


The most dangerous myth in Montana

By: - July 6, 2023

The most dangerous myth in Montana is the notion that the state is populated with people who have pulled themselves up by their individual bootstraps. And it is fitting that such an analogy is impossible. The “bootstraps mentality” is something deeply embedded in the culture of this rugged, proud state. In Montana, we self-soothe by […]

Montana Supreme Court says officers must have more than a hunch to search a vehicle

By: - July 5, 2023

What began as a minor traffic stop in eastern Montana became a drug bust three years ago. But a recent Montana Supreme Court ruling has overturned the conviction, and put more safeguards in place, saying a minor – nearly trifling – stop can’t transform into a search-and-seizure operation without clear probable cause. The case, State […]


Montana libraries may be shrinking by increasingly small minds

By: - June 29, 2023

So is it the lesbian part or the Marxist part? That’s my question to the Montana State Library Commission, which decided that the election of Emily Drabinski, a  Marxist lesbian as the American Libraries Association president, was enough of an affront to the Treasure State that it may need to pull out of the ALA […]

Outdoor groups challenge plans to build diversion pipeline in Red Rocks Wilderness

By: - June 28, 2023

Four groups have filed a lawsuit against the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, challenging its plan to construct and operate a water-diversion pipeline within the Red Rock Lakes Wilderness Area in southwestern Montana. The groups are asking U.S. District Court Judge Dana L. Christensen to halt the project on both a temporary and permanent basis, […]

Federal judge halts Ripley logging project, orders Forest Service to do more work

By: - June 27, 2023

A federal judge has ruled that the United States Forest Service failed to adequately analyze the effects of a large logging project on grizzly bears and lynx in northwestern Montana, and ordered the agency to complete more work, halting the project until those analyses are completed. Judge Dana L. Christensen upheld a federal magistrate’s order […]

Birth certificate rule is unconstitutional, judge holds state in contempt, liable for entire suit

By: - June 27, 2023

The district court judge presiding during a two-year court battle over how the state allowed residents to change a birth certificate didn’t just strike down a 2021 law as unconstitutional. He held the state in contempt, ordered it to pay the plaintiffs’ attorneys’ fees for the entirety of the months-long litigation, and issued a scathing […]

Judge gives Gianforte six weeks to hand over documents related to ‘bad actor’ request

By: - June 26, 2023

A Helena judge is giving Montana Gov. Greg Gianforte six weeks to turn over all documents related to a mining official and the claims that he should be barred from working in the state, and said the state’s chief executive had either misconstrued Montana’s right-to-know laws or provided no legal justification for stonewalling the release […]

Kaczynski’s death provides powerful reminder of the danger of unchecked mental illness

By: - June 25, 2023

Ted Kaczynksi, the man known to the world as the “Unabomber,” may have been the forebear of the modern mass-shooting killer. Brooding, alone, posting hateful screeds, then targeting his victims. He was the United States’ most prolific domestic terrorist — living at large for 17 years —  before being apprehended in a 10-by-12-foot cabin in […]