A sketch of the state, Montana.

This article covers Congressional candidates from Montana for the midterm election this November. To access our Montana primary review, click here. To learn more about Sustainable Politician Project and our ranking system, read our full intro here.

In the summaries that we provide for incumbents, we include a score based on their “LCV” score. The LCV is the League of Conservation Voters, and they track incumbent’s votes on major environmental policies that are going through Congress. If you want to know more about the LCV, click here.

U.S. Senate

Our primary pick: Jon Tester – Incumbent – (Campaign Site)Rank: Good

  • Democrat
  • Incumbent since 2006
  • Former music teacher
  • Organic farmer

Jon, like most of Montana’s candidates, is concerned about the state’s land and natural resources, knowing that the recreation, farming, and open spaces are part of your economy and culture. He wants to keep public lands under the federal wing, because giving them to the state government might be too much for the state to upkeep, and force them to sell to private owners. This is why he’s supported bills that keep public lands public. Jon also introduced the Blackfoot Clearwater Stewardship Act, which aims to help with restoration in the Otatsy Recreation Management Area and the Spread Mountain Recreation Area.

When it comes to energy, Jon has a little bit of a controversial approach for us. While he supports harnessing Montana’s renewable energy, like wind, solar, and hydro, he’s also still pushing for an “all of the above” approach and continues advocating for all energy source uses, including natural gas and (clean) coal consumption. You should note, that his support for clean coal burning is coupled with a push to capture the carbon emissions, which is better than not, and his LCV score is 86% (source).

Matt Rosendale (R)Rank: Bad

Matt says that he opposes “big government regulations that kill jobs” but he doesn’t name any. It’s unclear what kind of regulations he’s referring to. His political courage test from 2012 states that he opposes funding renewable energy development or domestic nonrenewable sources, and is against regulations that aim to reduce climate change effects (source).

Rick Breckenridge (Libertarian)Rank: Unknown

We were unable to find information regarding Rick’s sustainability platform.

U.S. House of Representatives

Montana is an “at-large” district, meaning there’s only one district for the whole state. So no need to worry about which district you’re in!

Our primary pick: Kathleen WilliamsRank: Good

  • Democrat
  • Montana State House of Representatives, 2010-2016

Kathleen is concerned with how climate change is affecting the great lands of Montana. Summers are increasing in record heat and facing droughts, and forest fires have already wiped out numerous trees and habitat. This threatens your hunting/fishing/farming culture, and therefore, your economy. So what does Kathleen want to do about this? Well, she’s already worked with businesses and eco-minded residents to create policies that support a responsible development of non-renewable energy production. Nonrenewable energy sources are obviously not ideal, but Kathleen does support investing in renewable energy development, not fossil fuels.

In a political courage test, she’s also indicated her support for curbing the effects of climate change by regulating greenhouse gas emissions and encouraging the private sector to develop alternative energy sources for consumers. She believes that the solutions to climate change are in business and policy and that the private sector has a lot to offer consumers to make eco-friendly changes for themselves while the government works on regulating (source). She also wants to keep public lands publically accessible and managed by the federal government, not the state (or private owners).

Greg Gianforte (R) – Incumbent – Rank: Bad

Greg has our anti-vote. He was happy about the plan to repeal the Clean Power Plan, which aimed to reduce carbon emissions (source). He also has an LCV score of just 9% (source).

Elinor Swanson (Libertarian)Rank: Weak

Elinor wants to hold polluters accountable for the damage they inflict on the people and environment. However, she also states that further reducing our carbon emissions could harm the country’s energy independence.

Categories: 2018 MidtermStates

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