Zinke among Montana contenders for 2 House primary seats | Fremont Tribune – Government and Politics


HELEN, Mont. (AP) — Voters in Montana cast their ballots Tuesday in the first primary election in three decades with two U.S. House seats on the line.

Ryan Zinke, who served as a cabinet minister under then-President Donald Trump, is running for the seat to represent the western portion of the state after Montana was awarded a second seat due to documented population growth in the 2020 census.

It’s technically an open seat, but the former Navy SEAL is widely seen as the de facto incumbent since he twice won the election for the state’s only seat in the United States House before moving on. resigning in 2017 to join the Trump administration as Secretary of the Interior.

Zinke’s opponents are calling attention to his troubled tenure at the agency, which has been marred by multiple ethics investigations. On the GOP side, the field includes former state senator Al “Doc” Olszewski, who has attempted to paint Zinke as a “liberal insider”.

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Meanwhile, three Democrats are vying for their party’s nomination: public health attorney Cora Neumann, Olympic rower and attorney Monica Tranel and former state Rep. Tom Winter.

In the state’s other district, U.S. Representative Matt Rosendale, who has Trump’s endorsement, will seek to fend off three main Republican challengers. On the Democratic side, contenders include Billings board member Penny Ronning and a candidate who died suddenly after the ballots were printed, Sen. Mark Sweeney said.

If voters choose Sweeney, the Democratic Party will hold a nominating convention to select a replacement.

In a race for the Supreme Court, Montana voters will advance two of three candidates in the general election. Incumbent Ingrid Gustafson faces challenges from attorney and Public Service Commission member James Brown and Helena District Court Judge Mike McMahon.

In the other Supreme Court race on the ballot this year, incumbent Jim Rice and his opponent, Billings attorney Bill D’Alton, will both qualify for the general election.

Polling stations close at 8 p.m.

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