Many Montanans were excited to get a second U.S. Congressional seat for the next decade.
The obvious line dividing social and economic interests in the state since our founding has roughly paralleled the continental divide; the historical split of the congressional seats when we had two for 80 years.
After the latest Redistricting Commission meeting, it was obvious the Democrat commissioners were determined to craft a victory for their party.
The previous six meetings saw Montana citizens demanding that the commissioners adhere to Montana law (MCA 5-1-115 new section 4) and create two districts that were contiguous, compact and not favoring a political party. The democrat commissioners decided that an undefined measure of “competitive” would replace the law.
Montana didn’t understand what that meant until seeing the maps they endorsed last week. Democrats have decided to support options that include placing all the tribes of Montana into a district only Republicans can statistically win, or divide Flathead County in half (the most conservative county in Montana), or combine the university towns of Bozeman and Missoula with the democrat strongholds of Helena and Butte.
People are also reading…
The maps endorsed by the Democrats violate Montana law. The Democrats here are caught up in the same game the national ones are playing, by putting their foot on the scale to keep them in power, regardless of the law or our Constitution’s words.
Since 1889 Montana voters alone decided who their politicians were, yet today's Democrat party wants their politicians to decide who their voters are.
Derek Skees is a Republican legislator representing Kalispell.