Government & Politics

Sweeping voting rights bill clears the U.S. House

BY: - March 4, 2021

The House passed sweeping voting rights, redistricting, campaign finance and ethics reform, late Wednesday night along party lines in a 220 to 210 vote, but the historic package will face an uphill battle in the Senate as no Republicans currently support the bill. Even though Democrats control Congress and the White House, their slim majority in a 50-50 Senate […]

IG report finds Jackson intimidated subordinates, drank, used prescription drugs while on duty

BY: - March 3, 2021

When Sen. Jon Tester first made allegations about Dr. Ronny Jackson, then White House Physician, President Donald Trump unleashed a barrage of invective at Montana’s senior Senator, vowing the Big Sandy farmer would have “a big price to pay.” Trump’s payback was personal as he traveled to the Treasure State several times to campaign against […]

Republicans object to state and local aid as Senate heads toward vote on COVID bill

BY: - March 3, 2021

WASHINGTON — As Democrats seek to send President Joe Biden their latest $1.9 trillion pandemic relief bill, federal lawmakers remain deeply divided on the question of whether state and local governments need another infusion of federal aid. Supporters of the bill — including numerous Republican mayors — say the answer is a clear “yes.” They argue that a […]

Senate splits on Biden’s pick for HHS

BY: - March 3, 2021

WASHINGTON — A Senate panel divided evenly along party lines Wednesday over the nomination of Xavier Becerra, President Biden’s pick to lead the Department of Health and Human Services. The 14-14 vote came in the Senate Finance Committee, with Democrats in support of advancing Becerra’s nomination and Republicans opposed to sending it to the full […]

Biden’s CDC director pick has long used data to save lives

BY: - March 3, 2021

In early December, Dr. Katy Stephenson was watching TV with her family and scrolling through Twitter when she saw a tweet that made her shout. “I said ‘Oh, my God!’” she recalled. “Super loud. My kids jumped up. My husband looked over. He said, ‘What’s wrong, what’s wrong, is everything OK?’ I was like, ‘No, […]

House kills right-to-work bill as it finishes first half of session

BY: - March 2, 2021

The Montana state House ended the session’s 44th (and technically also 45th) day with a recognition of one lawmaker’s status as an elite dancer (Jonathan Windy Boy of Box Elder is the Michael Jordan of pow wow and grass dance, by some accounts), a group rendition of the state anthem (“M-O-N-T-A-N-A!”), and a brief attempt […]

Biden urges states to speed up vaccinating teachers

BY: - March 2, 2021

WASHINGTON — President Joe Biden is urging states to prioritize teachers for COVID-19 vaccines, setting a goal of ensuring that every pre-kindergarten through 12th grade educator, school staff member and childcare worker is able to receive at least one shot this month. At least 34 states and the District of Columbia have some or all […]

Gianforte announces vaccine expansion

BY: - March 2, 2021

More Montanans will soon be eligible for the COVID-19 vaccine as Gov. Greg Gianforte announced Tuesday that he is expanding the list of eligible recipients under Phase 1B. The new phase — Phase 1B+ — will go into effect Monday, Gianforte said. The additional step to Phase 1B+ will expand Phase 1B to include those […]

In surprise vote, House kills Democratic municipal broadband proposal

BY: - March 2, 2021

Democratic legislation that would allow local governments to own or operate broadband systems died in a final House vote Tuesday morning after a dramatic change of fate that saw dozens of Republicans who had previously supported the proposal vote against it. House Bill 422’s sponsor, Rep. Kelly Kortum, D-Bozeman, told the Daily Montanan that he […]

Montana leading the way at chipping away abortion rights

BY: - March 2, 2021

When Rep. Lola Sheldon-Galloway introduced a bill in the Montana House two years ago that would have prohibited abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy, the Republican legislator knew it was unlikely to survive the veto pen of the Democratic governor. Sure enough, then-Gov. Steve Bullock vetoed that bill and two other anti-abortion measures passed by […]

Lawmakers have whirlwind day at Capitol as transmittal deadline nears

BY: and - March 1, 2021

Lawmakers did not stray from hot-button issues and fiery debates on Monday as they fought against the clock to dispose of more than 140 bills across both chambers before the legislative transmittal deadline on Wednesday, by which time most policy proposals must advance to the opposite chamber or die.  As it worked through an hours’ […]

Meatpacking inspections bill pass as amended

BY: - March 1, 2021

An amended House Bill 336, which seeks to change meatpacking inspections, passed the House Appropriations Committee 21-3 on Monday. The bill aims to forge an interstate agreement among willing states that would adhere to the same regulations as federally inspected meat-packing plants so that packers and ranchers could market products across state lines. However, the bill’s […]