Government & Politics

Report: Depression among youth hits 30-year high in pandemic

BY: - January 18, 2022

Depression among high school students hit its highest rate in three decades, 41 percent, during the pandemic, according to results of the 2021 Montana Youth Risk Behavior Study. “If anything good came out of this reporting in 2021, it was that our suicide attempts did not increase during the pandemic,” said Susan Court, state coordinator […]

Human trafficking reports up 871% since 2015; underreporting still an issue

BY: - January 18, 2022

Cigarettes, chew and the occasional suicide note were the standard surrenderings from students after former youth pastor Lowell Hochhalter would give presentations at school assemblies across Montana and the country. But as time went on, he said the offerings became more grim, like stories aligning with signs of human trafficking. “That was world rocking to […]

BLM has a chance to increase land protections and push back against climate change

BY: - January 17, 2022

The largest piece of America’s incredible wealth of public lands is the 250 million acres overseen by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM). In fact, the BLM manages 1 in 10 acres of surface area in the U.S., and 30% of the minerals. Now, the Biden administration has an unprecedented opportunity to increase BLM protections for […]

Judge Gregory Todd retires, remains concerned about separation of powers

BY: - January 16, 2022

Testimony during the last Legislative session frightened Yellowstone County District Court Judge Gregory Todd, who retired in December after 21 years on the bench.  “I’m concerned about the number of legislators that have joined the attacks on the judiciary without fully appreciating our systems of checks and balances,” Todd said a couple of weeks before […]

Bridge funding in infrastructure law on the way to states

BY: - January 14, 2022

The federal government will begin releasing more than $5 billion for distressed bridges in the first year of funding under the recent infrastructure law, President Joe Biden said in a Friday video message. He specifically mentioned the Brent Spence Bridge connecting Ohio and Kentucky, the Interstate 5 bridge over the Columbia River between Oregon and Washington […]

‘Doesn’t impact me’: Rosendale responds to conspiracy charges filed against Oath Keepers

BY: - January 14, 2022

Congressman Matthew Rosendale said on Friday he was not aware of the seditious conspiracy charges filed one day earlier against the founder of the anti-government group Oath Keepers and former Montana resident Stewart Rhodes for his involvement in the Jan.6, 2021, insurrection. In 2014, Rosendale spoke at a pro-Second Amendment Oath Keepers rally in Kalispell. […]

Monforton asks Montana Supreme Court to take supervisory control of CI-121 case

BY: - January 14, 2022

A lawyer and sponsor of Constitutional Initiative 121 wants the Montana Supreme Court to let him keep collecting signatures for the measure, which would put a cap on residential property taxes. In a petition filed Friday, Matthew Monforton is asking the Montana Supreme Court to stay a Lewis and Clark County District Court’s order enjoining […]

Gianforte, Rosendale, Daines celebrate Montana abortion restrictions as Roe hangs in the balance

BY: - January 14, 2022

Several top Republican officials joined more than a hundred people at the Capitol in Helena on Friday for the March for Life, celebrating a year of long-stalled progress for the anti-abortion cause in Montana and gearing up for the possibility of a U.S. Supreme Court decision overturning Roe v. Wade later in the year. Gov. […]

Senate filibuster on voting rights criticized by advocates for the poor

BY: - January 14, 2022

WASHINGTON — Progressive lawmakers Friday joined a virtual news conference with organizers from the Poor People’s Campaign and said they are not giving up on the push to change Senate rules to pass voting rights legislation. The Poor People’s Campaign: A National Call for Moral Revival held the virtual meeting to kick off its plans for a […]

Seven states to watch in the 2022 push to restrict voting rights

BY: - January 14, 2022

WASHINGTON — Republican state lawmakers across the country are ramping up their drive to enact voting and election-related laws in time for crucial 2022 midterm elections. As federal legislation that would limit state-level voting restrictions appears stymied in Washington, Republicans in the states are moving forward with new proposals and revisiting old ones that Democrats and […]

Sinema won’t support changes in the Senate filibuster, in setback for voting rights

BY: - January 14, 2022

WASHINGTON — Arizona Democratic Sen. Kyrsten Sinema on Thursday appeared to end a drive by Democrats to change the Senate’s filibuster rules and pass major voting rights legislation. Sinema said during a Senate floor speech that she believed any changes to the filibuster would continue to create political division, despite her concerns over a wave of […]

Federal prosecutors file seditious conspiracy charges against Oath Keepers in Jan. 6 attack

BY: - January 14, 2022

WASHINGTON — Stewart Rhodes, the founder of the far-right militia group the Oath Keepers, was charged with seditious conspiracy in organizing an attack on the U.S. Capitol and disrupting the Electoral College certification of the president, the Justice Department announced Thursday. Edward Vallejo, 63, of Phoenix is charged along with Rhodes in connection with events leading up to […]