Montana legislative and regional candidates were required to file campaign finance reports with the Commissioner of Political Practices (COPP) on or before May 6.
Those reports are now up on the COPP site.
There are four Republicans and one Democrat in this Havre-area race.
Republican Rob Cook has raised over $16,000 and has spent $7,000. Cory Mckinney has raised about $1,200. Randy Pinocci has raised $6,400 and spent $1,600. Former Libertarian, Mark Wicks, rounds out the GOP side. He hasn’t filed a report.
Their Democratic opponent, Doug Kaercher, has raised about $9,000 and spent $2,500.
This race focuses on the Helena area and has one Republican incumbent and three Dem challengers.
Brad Johnson will probably keep his seat. He’s raised a mere $2,000, however, and has spent $450. He’s listed this as primary fundraising, despite not having a primary.
Democrat Andy Shirtliff will probably win his primary, as he has strong ties with the MT Democratic Party. He’s raised $6,700 and has spent $2,200.
Tyrel Suzor-Hoy will be an obstacle for Shirtliff, however. He’s raised over $13,000 and has spent $7,500. He actually started fundraising way back in October.
Henry Speich hasn’t filed a report, and isn’t even in the COPP system.
Clerk of Supreme Court
Republican Bowen Greenwood has raised about $5,000 based on his three reports, and he’s spent $560. Democrat Rex Renk has raised about $21,000, based on his four reports, and has spent around $5,000 or so.
Libertarian Roger Roots rounds out this race. He hasn’t filed a report.
I’m not going to get into the various district court races. Now I’ll focus on some interesting legislative races, with the main focus being the Missoula area.
This Great Falls race has Democrat Tom Jacobson with $4,300 raised and about $2,000 spent. He’s been fundraising since last July.
Adam Rosendale – son of our State Auditor – is the GOP candidate. He hasn’t bothered to file a report.
This Helena race has Democratic favorite Janet Ellis with nearly $18,000 raised and $6,000 spent. She’s been fundraising since last July.
Fellow Democrat Michael Uda has also filed. He’s raised about $8,000 and has spent $7,500.
Their GOP opponent is John Schmidt, who’s raised $2,800 and spent $1,600.
This Missoula race has Democrat Nate McConnell with $2,600 raised and $1,625 spent.
The Republican, Adam Pummill, has raised $100 and spent nothing.
Democrat Bryce Bennett has raised over $20,000…all of it in the first week of May. Yeah – an incorrectly done finance report. He’s also spent $7,500.
His GOP opponent is Niki Sardot, who’s also made mistakes on her report. It shows no money raised or spent at the top of the report, but you do see that $160 was spent on 2 yard signs and some banners.
Missoula’s HD 89 has four Democrats and a Republican running.
For the Dems, Patrick Weasel Head has raised nearly $6,000 and he’s spent $5,700. Dirk Williams has raised $5,700 and has spent $2,700. Katie Sullivan has raised nearly $4,000 and has spent $2,300. Jon Van Dyke hasn’t filed a report.
David Doc Moore is the Republican, and he’s $2,900 and has spent $250.
This crowded Missoula race has 4 Democrats and a Republican.
For the Dems, Alex Gray started raising in May and has about $2,000 and he’s spent $1,800. Connie Keogh started a month earlier and now has nearly $22,000 raised, with $15,000 spent.
Eric Love has raised $50 and spent it all, while the Moms Demand Action figurehead for Missoula, Nancy de Pastino, has raised over $25,000 and spent $20,000.
Aldo Sardot is the lone Republican, and he hasn’t raised a dime yet.
Democrats think they can regain this seat, which Adam Hertz picked up two years ago.
He’ll be back, and he’s raised over $10,100 and spent $2,300.
Dem Thomas Winter has raised over $10,200 and he’s spent $1,100.
T.J. McDermott has raised over $12,000 and has spent $1,200. His opponent in the Democratic primary is Josh Clark, who's raised $2,750 and has spent $2,400.
These guys faced off in 2014, and it'll be interesting to see what happens. Josh Clark has a lot of signs, but McDermott has a lot too...and his are bigger.
Missoula County Commissioner
Josh Slotnick want's Jean Curtiss's job, and so far he's raised over $21,000 and has spent about $14,000.
Jean Curtiss hasn't filed a campaign finance report for this race.
And that’s it. If you’d like a different race, let me know and I’ll put it in the comments.
Mostly, I think we all know the Dems aren’t taking back the legislature anytime soon. Here in Missoula, Dems will win most of their seats, but without a legislative majority in either chamber, it doesn’t really make a difference.
There will probably be some interesting races in other parts of the state as well. I’m sure many candidates will say or do silly things they later regret. The blogs will probably dig up shit on others.
Absentee ballots go out 25 days before the election, so that’ll be in another week.
There’ll be winners and losers, and then we can get on with the slower summer campaign season before things ramp up in September. During those three months, the Greens will probably be kicked off the ballot as well.
I’ll probably let the local media do the May 29 campaign finance reports, as I don’t think there’ll be huge changes over the next few weeks.
I’m not sure they’ll cover this stuff, though. We’ll see. Until then, get outside and have some fun.