GLENDIVE, MT (KUMV) – Population growth in the 2020 census has given Montana an additional congressional district that draws the border between western counties like Flathead, Missoula and Gallatin; and the central and eastern parts of the state. The eastern district, known as District 2, has a race between Rep. Matt Rosendale, Penny Ronning and Gary Buchanan.
Matt Rosendale is seeking his second term in Congress. He is a rancher from Glendive who has served in both the state House and Senate and was state auditor and insurance commissioner in 2017.
Rosendale said he is proud of his accomplishments in the past two years, including several pieces of legislation that support veterans, such as the PACT Act. He said his top priorities if re-elected would be to establish a budget and secure the southern border.
“We’ve been able to pass a lot of things through Veterans Affairs that keep the promises that our country made to our veterans, which they certainly deserve and have earned,” Rosendale said.
Democrat Penny Ronning plans to unseat Rosendale this week. She most recently served as a Billings City Councilwoman and worked to improve anti-trafficking efforts, including the creation of a county task force.
He praised Rosendale’s voting record, saying she could be a better vote for Montana. His biggest priorities are fighting inflation, supporting farmers and improving healthcare.
“It’s time to continue the revival within my community and my state and say we need representation that truly belongs to Montanans,” Ronning said.
Gary Buchanan is the third independent candidate to run on a split vote record. He said he considers himself a true independent, having worked for both Republican and Democratic governors. Buchanan owns an investment firm and has served in many statewide positions, including the first Director of the Department of Commerce and Chairman of the Montana Banking Board.
Buchanan said he is embarrassed by Rosendale’s voting record and has a background in fighting inflation and crime.
“I think tight fiscal policy — what Congress can control in terms of spending — is essential to reducing inflation,” Buchanan said.
Both Buchanan and Ronning criticized Rosendale for voting against several bills, including a resolution condemning Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and awarding Medals of Honor to Capitol Police who took part in the riots. Rosendale said there were some additions to the legislation that he disagreed with, such as giving President Biden unlimited financial and military power and including a slain police officer who was killed in a separate attack that Rosendale He said that he should be respected as an individual instead of being grouped. others
“I behaved myself and voted the way I told everyone,” Rosendale said.
Selected candidates will officially take their seats in Congress on January 3.
Democrats currently hold a slim majority in the U.S. House, but Republicans have said they feel inflation is continuing and White House policies could allow them to take control after Election Day.
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