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Between many mountain ranges are rich river valleys. The Big Hole Valley ,  Bitterroot Valley ,  Gallatin Valley ,  Flathead Valley ,   and Paradise Valley  have extensive agricultural resources and multiple opportunities for tourism and recreation.
East and north of this transition zone are the expansive and sparsely populated Northern Plains , with tableland prairies, smaller island mountain ranges, and badlands. The area east of the divide in the state' north-central portion is known for the Missouri Breaks and other significant rock formations.
Cascade, Crown, Square, Shaw and Buttes. Montana is one of few geographic areas in the world whose rivers form parts of three major watersheds i. West of the divide, the Clark Fork of the Columbia not to be confused with the Clarks Fork of the Yellowstone River rises near Butte  and flows northwest to Missoula , where it is joined by the Blackfoot River and Bitterroot River.
East of the divide the Missouri River , which is formed by the confluence of the Jefferson , Madison and Gallatin rivers near Three Forks ,  flows due north through the west-central part of the state to Great Falls. There they join the Saskatchewan River , which ultimately empties into Hudson Bay. There are some 3, named lakes and reservoirs in Montana, including Flathead Lake , the largest natural freshwater lake in the western United States.
Mary Lake in Glacier National Park. The largest reservoir in the state is Fort Peck Reservoir on the Missouri river, which is contained by the second largest earthen dam and largest hydraulically filled dam in the world. Vegetation of the state includes lodgepole pine , ponderosa pine ; Douglas fir , larch , spruce ; aspen , birch , red cedar , hemlock , ash , alder ; rocky mountain maple and cottonwood trees.
Forests cover approximately 25 percent of the state. Flowers native to Montana include asters , bitterroots , daisies , lupins , poppies , primroses , columbine , lilies , orchids , and dryads. Several species of sagebrush and cactus and many species of grasses are common.
Many species of mushrooms and lichens  are also found in the state. Montana is home to a diverse array of fauna that includes 14 amphibian ,  90 fish,  mammal ,  20 reptile  and bird  species. Additionally, there are over 10, invertebrate species, including mollusks and 30 crustaceans.
Montana has the largest grizzly bear population in the lower 48 states. These lands are managed by the state for the benefit of public schools and institutions in the state.
Areas managed by the National Park Service include: Montana is a large state with considerable variation in geography, topography and altitude, and the climate is, therefore, equally varied.
The western half is mountainous, interrupted by numerous large valleys. The Continental Divide has a considerable effect on the climate, as it restricts the flow of warmer air from the Pacific from moving east, and drier continental air from moving west.
The area west of the divide has a modified northern Pacific coast climate, with milder winters, cooler summers, less wind and a longer growing season. Throughout the state, summer nights are generally cool and pleasant. Extreme hot weather is less common above 4, feet or 1, meters. The coldest temperature on record for Montana is also the coldest temperature for the entire contiguous U. The front is often well defined, causing a large temperature drop in a hour period.
Conversely, air flow from the southwest results in " chinooks. Loma is the site of the most extreme recorded temperature change in a hour period in the United States. The mountain ranges block the moist Pacific air, holding moisture in the western valleys, and creating rain shadows to the east.
Heron , in the west, receives the most precipitation , On the eastern leeward side of a mountain range, the valleys are much drier; Lonepine averages Most of the larger cities get 30 to 50 inches or 0. Mountain ranges can accumulate inches or 7. Heavy snowstorms may occur from September through May, though most snow falls from November to March. The climate has become warmer in Montana and continues to do so.
Previously these cold spells had killed off bark beetles , but these are now attacking the forests of western Montana. Environmental Protection Agency by the Harvard School of Engineering and Applied Science, portions of Montana will experience a percent increase in area burned by wildfires, and an percent increase in related air pollution.
The table below lists average temperatures for the warmest and coldest month for Montana's seven largest cities. The coldest month varies between December and January depending on location, although figures are similar throughout. Montana is one of only two continental US states along with Colorado which is antipodal to land.
No towns are precisely antipodal to Kerguelen, though Chester and Rudyard are close. Various indigenous peoples lived in the territory of the present-day state of Montana for thousands of years. Historic tribes encountered by Europeans and settlers from the United States included the Crow in the south-central area; the Cheyenne in the very southeast; the Blackfeet , Assiniboine and Gros Ventres in the central and north-central area; and the Kootenai and Salish in the west. The smaller Pend d'Oreille and Kalispel tribes lived near Flathead Lake and the western mountains, respectively.
A part of southeastern Montana was used as a corridor between the Crows and the related Hidatsas in North Dakota. The land in Montana east of the continental divide was part of the Louisiana Purchase in Subsequent to and particularly in the decades following the Lewis and Clark Expedition , American, British and French traders operated a fur trade , typically working with indigenous peoples, in both eastern and western portions of what would become Montana. These dealings were not always peaceful, and though the fur trade brought some material gain for indigenous tribal groups it also brought exposure to European diseases and altered their economic and cultural traditions.
The first permanent settlement by Euro-Americans in what today is Montana was St. Mary's near present-day Stevensville. The first gold discovered in Montana was at Gold Creek near present-day Garrison in A series of major mining discoveries in the western third of the state starting in found gold, silver, copper, lead, coal and later oil that attracted tens of thousands of miners to the area.
The richest of all gold placer diggings was discovered at Alder Gulch, where the town of Virginia City was established. The largest mining operations were in the city of Butte , which had important silver deposits and gigantic copper deposits. Before the creation of Montana Territory — , various parts of what is now Montana were parts of Oregon Territory — , Washington Territory — , Idaho Territory — , and Dakota Territory — The first territorial capital was at Bannack.
The first territorial governor was Sidney Edgerton. The capital moved to Virginia City in and to Helena in In , the non-Indian population of Montana Territory was 20, As white settlers began populating Montana from the s through the s, disputes with Native Americans ensued, primarily over land ownership and control.
In , Washington Territorial Governor Isaac Stevens negotiated the Hellgate treaty between the United States Government and the Salish , Pend d'Oreille , and the Kootenai people of western Montana, which established boundaries for the tribal nations. The treaty was ratified in More than a dozen additional military outposts were established in the state. Pressure over land ownership and control increased due to discoveries of gold in various parts of Montana and surrounding states.
The last recorded conflict in Montana between the U. Indian survivors who had signed treaties were generally required to move onto reservations. Simultaneously with these conflicts, bison , a keystone species and the primary protein source that Native people had survived on for centuries were being destroyed.
Some estimates say there were over 13 million bison in Montana in Cattle ranching has been central to Montana's history and economy since Johnny Grant began wintering cattle in the Deer Lodge Valley in the s and traded cattle fattened in fertile Montana valleys with emigrants on the Oregon Trail.
Davis started a major open range cattle operation in Fergus County in Operated by the National Park Service , it is a 1,acre 7. However, the railroad played a major role in sparking tensions with Native American tribes in the s. Jay Cooke , the NPR president launched major surveys into the Yellowstone valley in , and which were challenged forcefully by the Sioux under chief Sitting Bull.
These clashes, in part, contributed to the Panic of , a financial crisis that delayed construction of the railroad into Montana. Under Territorial Governor Thomas Meagher , Montanans held a constitutional convention in in a failed bid for statehood.
A second constitutional convention was held in Helena in that produced a constitution ratified 3: For political reasons, Congress did not approve Montana statehood until Congress approved Montana statehood in February and President Grover Cleveland signed an omnibus bill granting statehood to Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota and Washington once the appropriate state constitutions were crafted.
In July , Montanans convened their third constitutional convention and produced a constitution accepted by the people and the federal government. On November 8, President Benjamin Harrison proclaimed Montana the forty-first state in the union.
The first state governor was Joseph K. The Homestead Act of provided free land to settlers who could claim and "prove-up" acres 0. Montana did not see a large influx of immigrants from this act because acres was usually insufficient to support a family in the arid territory. The Desert Land Act of was passed to allow settlement of arid lands in the west and allotted acres 2.
After three years, a fee of one dollar per acre would be paid and the land would be owned by the settler. This act brought mostly cattle and sheep ranchers into Montana, many of whom grazed their herds on the Montana prairie for three years, did little to irrigate the land and then abandoned it without paying the final fees.
In the early s, James J. Hill of the Great Northern began promoting settlement in the Montana prairie to fill his trains with settlers and goods. Other railroads followed suit. In , Congress passed the Enlarged Homestead Act that expanded the amount of free land from to acres 0. In addition, Montana was going through a temporary period of higher-than-average precipitation.
He was the Joad of a [half] century ago, swarming into a hostile land: The honyocker was farmer, spinster, deep-sea diver; fiddler, physician, bartender, cook.
He lived in Minnesota or Wisconsin, Massachusetts or Maine. There the news sought him out—Jim Hill's news of free land in the Treasure State However, farmers faced a number of problems.
Massive debt was one. Weather and agricultural conditions are much harsher and drier west of the th meridian. Many people left, and half the banks in the state went bankrupt as a result of providing mortgages that could not be repaid. By , homesteaders filed claims on over five million acres, and by , over 93 million acres were farmed.
Her actions were widely criticized in Montana, where public support for the war was strong, and wartime sentiment reached high levels of patriotism among many Montanans. This represented a manpower contribution to the war that was 25 percent higher than any other state on a per capita basis.
Approximately Montanans died as a result of the war and were wounded, also higher than any other state on a per capita basis. The war created a boom for Montana mining, lumber and farming interests as demand for war materials and food increased. In June , the U. Congress passed the Espionage Act of which was later extended by the Sedition Act of , enacted in May The Montana Act led to the arrest of over individuals and the conviction of 78, mostly of German or Austrian descent.
Over 40 spent time in prison. In May , then-Governor Brian Schweitzer posthumously issued full pardons for all those convicted of violating the Montana Sedition Act. The Montanans who opposed U. Stewart as well as local "loyalty committees. War sentiment was complicated by labor issues. The Anaconda Copper Company , which was at its historic peak of copper production,  was an extremely powerful force in Montana, but also faced criticism and opposition from socialist newspapers and unions struggling to make gains for their members.
He gave some speeches with inflammatory anti-war rhetoric. On August 1, , he was dragged from his boarding house by masked vigilantes , and hanged from a railroad trestle, considered a lynching. The Council also passed rules limiting public gatherings and prohibiting the speaking of German in public. In the wake of the legislative action in , emotions rose. Wheeler and several District Court Judges who hesitated to prosecute or convict people brought up on charges were strongly criticized.
Wheeler was brought before the Council of Defense, though he avoided formal proceedings, and a District Court judge from Forsyth was impeached. There were burnings of German-language books and several near-hangings. The prohibition on speaking German remained in effect into the early s. Complicating the wartime struggles, the Influenza epidemic claimed the lives of over 5, Montanans. This caused great hardship for farmers, ranchers, and miners.
The wheat farms in eastern Montana make the state a major producer; the wheat has a relatively high protein content and thus commands premium prices. Another 40,plus Montanans entered the armed forces in the first year following the declaration of war, and over 57, joined up before the war ended. These numbers constituted about 10 percent of the state's total population, and Montana again contributed one of the highest numbers of soldiers per capita of any state. At least Montanans died in the war.
S-Canadian commando-style force that trained at Fort William Henry Harrison for experience in mountainous and winter conditions before deployment. During the war, about 30 Japanese Fu-Go balloon bombs were documented to have landed in Montana, though no casualties nor major forest fires were attributed to them. In , Jeannette Rankin was again elected to Congress. In , as she had in , she voted against the United States' declaration of war after the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor.
Hers was the only vote against the war, and in the wake of public outcry over her vote, Rankin required police protection for a time. Other pacifists tended to be those from "peace churches" who generally opposed war. Many individuals claiming conscientious objector status from throughout the U. However, the battleship was never completed. Montana is the only one of the first 48 states lacking a completed battleship being named for it.
Alaska and Hawaii have both had nuclear submarines named after them. Montana is the only state in the union without a modern naval ship named in its honor.
This will be the second commissioned warship to bear the name Montana. The first operational missiles were in-place and ready in early In late missiles assigned to the st Strategic Missile Wing would play a major role in the Cuban Missile Crisis. Kennedy said the Soviets backed down because they knew he had an "ace in the hole," referring directly to the Minuteman missiles in Montana.
According to the Census, Montana has a larger Native American population numerically and percentage-wise than most U. Although the state ranked 45th in population according to the U. Census , it ranked 19th in total native people population. Big Horn, Glacier, and Roosevelt. While the largest European-American population in Montana overall is German, pockets of significant Scandinavian ancestry are prevalent in some of the farming-dominated northern and eastern prairie regions, parallel to nearby regions of North Dakota and Minnesota.
Farmers of Irish, Scots, and English roots also settled in Montana. The historically mining-oriented communities of western Montana such as Butte have a wider range of European-American ethnicity; Finns , Eastern Europeans and especially Irish settlers left an indelible mark on the area, as well as people originally from British mining regions such as Cornwall , Devon and Wales. The nearby city of Helena, also founded as a mining camp, had a similar mix in addition to a small Chinatown.
Hutterite population with several colonies spread across the state. Beginning in the mids, the state also saw an influx of Amish , who relocated to Montana from the increasingly urbanized areas of Ohio and Pennsylvania.
Montana's Hispanic population is concentrated around the Billings area in south-central Montana, where many of Montana's Mexican-Americans have been in the state for generations. The Chinese in Montana, while a low percentage today, have historically been an important presence.
About — Chinese miners were in the mining areas of Montana by , and in However, public opinion grew increasingly negative toward them in the s and nearly half of the state's Asian population left the state by English is the official language in the state of Montana, as it is in many U.
According to the U. There were about 13, Spanish-language speakers in the state 1. These included a Native American language 64 percent , German 4 percent , Spanish 3 percent , Russian 1 percent , and Chinese less than 0. According to the Pew Forum, the religious affiliations of the people of Montana are as follows: The largest denominations in Montana as of were the Catholic Church with , adherents, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints with 46, adherents, Evangelical Lutheran Church in America with 38, adherents, and non-denominational Evangelical Protestant with 27, adherents.
Approximately 66, people of Native American heritage live in Montana. Stemming from multiple treaties and federal legislation, including the Indian Appropriations Act , the Dawes Act , and the Indian Reorganization Act , seven Indian reservations, encompassing eleven federally recognized tribal nations, were created in Montana. A twelfth nation, the Little Shell Chippewa is a "landless" people headquartered in Great Falls ; it is recognized by the state of Montana but not by the U.
Montana's Constitution specifically reads that "the state recognizes the distinct and unique cultural heritage of the American Indians and is committed in its educational goals to the preservation of their cultural integrity. The University of Montana "was the first to establish dual admission agreements with all of the tribal colleges and as such it was the first institution in the nation to actively facilitate student transfer from the tribal colleges" .
Births in table don't add up, because Hispanics are counted both by their ethnicity and by their race, giving a higher overall number. Montana is a relative hub of beer microbrewing , ranking third in the nation in number of craft breweries per capita in Ecotaxes on resource extraction are numerous.
A state severance tax on coal which varied from 20 to 30 percent was upheld by the Supreme Court of the United States in Commonwealth Edison Co. Montana , U. Tourism is also important to the economy with over ten million visitors a year to Glacier National Park , Flathead Lake , the Missouri River headwaters, the site of the Battle of Little Bighorn and three of the five entrances to Yellowstone National Park. Montana's personal income tax contains 7 brackets, with rates ranging from 1 percent to 6.
Montana has no sales tax. In Montana, household goods are exempt from property taxes. However, property taxes are assessed on livestock, farm machinery, heavy equipment, automobiles, trucks, and business equipment.
The amount of property tax owed is not determined solely by the property's value. The property's value is multiplied by a tax rate, set by the Montana Legislature, to determine its taxable value. The taxable value is then multiplied by the mill levy established by various taxing jurisdictions—city and county government, school districts and others. As of June , the state's unemployment rate is 3.
The Montana University System consists of:. The Montana Territory was formed on April 26, , when the U. The first schools were subscription schools that typically held in the teacher's home. The first formal school on record was at Fort Owen in Bitterroot valley in The students were Indian children and the children of Fort Owen employees. The first school term started in early winter and only lasted until February Classes were taught by Mr. The first school year ran through the summer and didn't end until August One of the first teachers at the school was Sarah Raymond.
She was a year-old woman who had traveled to Virginia City via wagon train in With the help of an assistant teacher, Mrs. Farley,  Raymond was responsible for teaching 50 to 60 students each day out of the 81 students enrolled at the school.
There were no textbooks used in the school. In their place was an assortment of books brought in by various emigrants. Many well-known artists, photographers and authors have documented the land, culture and people of Montana in the last years. Painter and sculptor Charles Marion Russell , known as "the cowboy artist" created more than 2, paintings of cowboys, Native Americans, and landscapes set in the Western United States and in Alberta , Canada.
Russell Museum Complex located in Great Falls, Montana , houses more than 2, Russell artworks, personal objects, and artifacts. Evelyn Cameron , a naturalist and photographer from Terry documented early 20th century life on the Montana prairie, taking startlingly clear pictures of everything around her: Many notable Montana authors have documented or been inspired by life in Montana in both fiction and non-fiction works.
There are no major league sports franchises in Montana due to the state's relatively small and dispersed population, but a number of minor league teams play in the state. Baseball is the minor-league sport with the longest heritage in the state, and Montana is currently home to four Minor League Baseball teams, all members of the Pioneer League: All of Montana's four-year colleges and universities field intercollegiate sports teams.
The two largest schools, the University of Montana and Montana State University , are members of the Big Sky Conference and have enjoyed a strong athletic rivalry since the early twentieth century.
Six of Montana's smaller four-year schools are members of the Frontier Conference. A variety of sports are offered at Montana high schools. There are junior ice hockey teams in Montana, four of which are affiliated with the North American 3 Hockey League: Montana provides year-round outdoor recreation opportunities for residents and visitors. Hiking, fishing, hunting, watercraft recreation, camping, golf, cycling, horseback riding, and skiing are popular activities.
Montana has been a destination for its world-class trout fisheries since the s. Montana is the home of the Federation of Fly Fishers and hosts many of the organizations annual conclaves. The state has robust recreational lake trout and kokanee salmon fisheries in the west, walleye can be found in many parts of the state, while northern pike , smallmouth and largemouth bass fisheries as well as catfish and paddlefish can be found in the waters of eastern Montana.
Montana is home to the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation and has a historic big game hunting tradition. There are fall bow and general hunting seasons for elk , pronghorn antelope , whitetail deer and mule deer. A random draw grants a limited number of permits for moose , mountain goats and bighorn sheep. There is a spring hunting season for black bear and in most years, limited hunting of bison that leave Yellowstone National Park is allowed.
Current law allows both hunting and trapping of a specific number of wolves and mountain lions. Trapping of assorted fur bearing animals is allowed in certain seasons and many opportunities exist for migratory waterfowl and upland bird hunting.
Both downhill skiing and cross-country skiing are popular in Montana, which has 15 developed downhill ski areas open to the public,  including:. Big Sky Resort and Whitefish Mountain Resort are destination resorts , while the remaining areas do not have overnight lodging at the ski area, though several host restaurants and other amenities. Montana also has millions of acres open to cross-country skiing on nine of its national forests plus in Glacier National Park.
In addition to cross-country trails at most of the downhill ski areas, there are also 13 private cross-country skiing resorts. Snowmobiling is popular in Montana which boasts over miles of trails and frozen lakes available in winter. Montana is ranked as the least obese state in the U. During the age of the Copper Kings , each Montana copper company had its own newspaper. This changed in when Lee Enterprises bought several Montana newspapers.
Railroads have been an important method of transportation in Montana since the s. Historically, the state was traversed by the main lines of three east-west transcontinental routes: Today, the BNSF Railway is the state's largest railroad, its main transcontinental route incorporating the former Great Northern main line across the state.
Bozeman Yellowstone International Airport is the busiest airport in the state of Montana, surpassing Billings Logan International Airport in the spring of Eight smaller communities have airports designated for commercial service under the Essential Air Service program. Route 10 was the primary east-west highway route across Montana, connecting the major cities in the southern half of the state.
Still the state's most important east-west travel corridor, the route is today served by Interstate 90 and Interstate 94 which roughly follow the same route as the Northern Pacific. Routes 2 and 12 and Montana Highway also traverse the entire state from east to west. Montana's only north-south Interstate Highway is Interstate Other major north-south highways include U.
Routes 87 , 89 , 93 and Montana and South Dakota are the only states to share a land border which is not traversed by a paved road. Highway , the primary paved route between the two, passes through the northeast corner of Wyoming between Montana and South Dakota.
Montana is governed by a constitution. The first constitution was drafted by a constitutional convention in , in preparation for statehood.
Ninety percent of its language came from an constitution which was never acted upon by Congress for national political reasons. The constitution mimicked the structure of the United States Constitution , as well as outlining almost the same civil and political rights for citizens.
However, the Montana constitution significantly restricted the power of state government, the legislature was much more powerful than the executive branch, and the jurisdiction of the District Courts very specifically described. In , Montana voters approved the call for a state constitutional convention. A new constitution was drafted, which made the legislative and executive branches much more equal in power and which was much less prescriptive in outlining powers, duties, and jurisdictions.
The constitution was narrowly approved, , to ,, and declared ratified on June 20, Three issues which the constitutional convention were unable to resolve were submitted to voters simultaneously with the proposed constitution. Voters approved the legalization of gambling, a bicameral legislature, and retention of the death penalty. The constitution has been amended 31 times as of Extensive new constitutional rights for victims of crime were approved in The constitution requires that voters determine every 20 years whether to hold a new constitutional convention.
Voters turned down a new convention in 84 percent no  and again in Montana has three branches of state government: Legislative, executive, and judicial. The executive branch is headed by an elected governor. The current Governor is Steve Bullock , a Democrat elected in There are nine other statewide elected offices in the executive branch as well: There are five Public Service Commissioners, who are elected on a regional basis.
The Public Service Commission's jurisdiction is statewide. There are 18 departments and offices which make up the executive branch: Elementary and secondary education are overseen by the Office of Public Instruction led by the elected Superintendent of Public Instruction , in cooperation with the governor-appointed Board of Public Education. Higher education is overseen by a governor-appointed Board of Regents, which in turn appoints a Commissioner of Higher Education. The Office of the Commissioner of Higher Education acts in an executive capacity on behalf of the regents, and oversees the state-run Montana University System.
Montana is an Alcoholic beverage control state. It is one of five states to have no sales tax. The Montana Legislature is bicameral, and consists of the member Montana Senate and the member Montana House of Representatives. The legislature meets in the Montana State Capitol in Helena in odd-numbered years for 90 days, beginning the first weekday of the year.
The deadline for a legislator to introduce a general bill is the 40th legislative day. The deadline for a legislator to introduce an appropriations, revenue, or referenda bill is the 62nd legislative day. Senators serve four-year terms, while Representatives serve two-year terms. All members are limited to serving no more than eight years in a single year period.
The Courts of Montana are established by the Constitution of Montana. The constitution requires the establishment of a Montana Supreme Court and Montana District Courts , and permits the legislature to establish Justice Courts , City Courts , Municipal Courts , and other inferior courts such as the legislature sees fit to establish.
The Montana Supreme Court is the court of last resort in the Montana court system. The constitution of provided for the election of no fewer than three Supreme Court justices, and one Chief Justice.
Each court member served a six-year term. The legislature increased the number of justices to five in The constitution lengthened the term of office to eight years, and established the minimum number of justices at five.
It allowed the legislature to increase the number of justices by two, which the legislature did in The Montana Supreme Court has the authority to declare acts of the legislature and executive unconstitutional under either the Montana or U. Its decisions may be appealed directly to the U. The Clerk of the Supreme Court is also an elected position, and serves a six-year term. Neither justices nor the clerk are term limited. Montana District Courts are the courts of general jurisdiction in Montana.
There are no intermediate appellate courts. District Courts have jurisdiction primarily over most civil cases, cases involving a monetary claim against the state, felony criminal cases, probate, and cases at law and in equity. When so authorized by the legislature, actions of executive branch agencies may be appealed directly to a District Court.
The District Courts also have de novo appellate jurisdiction from inferior courts city courts, justice courts, and municipal courts , and oversee naturalization proceedings. District Court judges are elected, and serve six-year terms. They are not term limited. There are 22 judicial districts in Montana, served by 56 District Courts and 46 District Court judges. The District Courts suffer from excessive workload, and the legislature has struggled to find a solution to the problem.
They are overseen by District Court judges. They consist of a chief probation officer, one or more juvenile probation officers, and support staff. Youth Courts have jurisdiction over misdemeanor and felony acts committed by those charged as a juvenile under the law. There is a Youth Court in every judicial district, and decisions of the Youth Court are appealable directly to the Montana Supreme Court. There is a single Workers' Compensation Court. It has a single judge, appointed by the governor.
The court hears cases arising under the Montana Workers' Compensation Act, and is the court of original jurisdiction for reviews of orders and regulations issued by the Montana Department of Labor and Industry.
Decisions of the court are appealable directly to the Montana Supreme Court. The court employs 12 permanent special masters. The Water Court adjudicates water rights claims under the Montana Water Use Act of , and has statewide jurisdiction.
District Courts have the authority to enforce decisions of the Water Court, but only the Montana Supreme Court has the authority to review decisions of the Water Court. From to , elections for judicial office in Montana were partisan. Beginning in , these elections became nonpartisan. The Montana Supreme Court struck down the nonpartisan law in on technical grounds, but a new law was enacted in which barred political parties from endorsing, making contributions to, or making expenditures on behalf of or against judicial candidates.
In , the U. Bullock , U. Although candidates must remain nonpartisan, spending by partisan entities is now permitted. Constitution provides each state with two Senators. Constitution provides each state with a single Representative, with additional representatives apportioned based on population. From statehood in until , Montana was represented in the United States House of Representatives by a single representative, elected at-large.
Montana received a second representative in , following the census and reapportionment. Both members, however, were still elected at-large. Beginning in , Montana moved to district, rather than at-large, elections for its two House members. This created Montana's 1st congressional district in the west and Montana's 2nd congressional district in the east. In the reapportionment following the census, Montana lost one of its House seats.
The remaining seat was again elected at-large. Greg Gianforte is the current officeholder. Montana's Senate district is the fourth largest by area, behind Alaska, Texas, and California. The most notorious of Montana's early Senators was William A. Clark , a " Copper King " and one of the 50 richest Americans ever. He is well known for having bribed his way into the U. Among Montana's most historically prominent Senators are Thomas J. Walsh serving from to , who was President-elect Franklin D.
Roosevelt's choice for Attorney General when he died; Burton K. Wheeler serving from to , an oft-mentioned presidential candidate and strong supporter of isolationism; Mike Mansfield , the longest-serving Senate Majority Leader in U. Senator in Montana history, and the senator who shepherded the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act through the Senate in ; and Lee Metcalf served to , a pioneer of the environmental movement.
Montana's House district is currently the largest congressional district in the United States by population, with just over 1,, constituents. It is currently the second largest House district by area, after Alaska's at-large congressional district. Of Montana's House delegates, Jeannette Rankin was the first woman to hold national office in the United States when she was elected to the U. House of Representatives in Carter , the first Catholic to serve as chairman of the Republican National Committee from to Three former Montana politicians have been named judges on the U.
Charles Nelson Pray who served in the U. House of Representatives from to , and Paul G. Hatfield who served as an appointed U. Brian Morris , who served as an Associate Justice of the Montana Supreme Court from to , currently served as a judge on the court. Elections in the state have been competitive, with the Democrats usually holding an edge, thanks to the support among unionized miners and railroad workers. Large-scale battles revolved around the giant Anaconda Copper company, based in Butte and controlled by Rockefeller interests, until it closed in the s.
Until , the company owned five of the state's six largest newspapers. Historically, Montana is a swing state of cross-ticket voters who tend to fill elected offices with individuals from both parties. Through the midth century, the state had a tradition of "sending the liberals to Washington and the conservatives to Helena. There have also been long-term shifts of party control. From through , the state was dominated by the Democratic Party , with Democratic governors for a year period, and a Democratic majority of both the national congressional delegation and during many sessions of the state legislature.
This pattern shifted, beginning with the election, when Montana elected a Republican governor for the first time since and sent a Republican to the U. Senate for the first time since This shift continued with the reapportionment of the state's legislative districts that took effect in , when the Republican Party took control of both chambers of the state legislature, consolidating a Republican party dominance that lasted until the reapportionment produced more swing districts and a brief period of Democratic legislative majorities in the mids.
In more recent presidential elections, Montana has voted for the Republican candidate in all but two elections from to the present. Overall, since the state has voted for Democratic governors 60 percent of the time and Republican presidents 40 percent of the time. In the presidential election , Montana was considered a swing state and was ultimately won by Republican John McCain , albeit by a narrow margin of two percent. At the state level, the pattern of split-ticket voting and divided government holds.
Democrats currently hold one of the state's U. Senate seats, as well as one of the five statewide offices Governor. The lone congressional district has been Republican since and in Steve Daines won one of the state's Senate seats for the GOP. The Legislative branch had split party control between the house and senate most years between and , when the mid-term elections returned both branches to Republican control. The state Senate is, as of , controlled by the Republicans 32 to 18, and the State House of Representatives at 59 to Historically, Republicans are strongest in the east, while Democrats are strongest in the west.
Montana currently has only one representative in the U. House, having lost its second district in the census reapportionment.
Montana's single congressional district holds the largest population of any district in the country, which means its one member in the House of Representatives represents more people than any other member of the U. House see List of U. The Hill reported in April that Tester had "reaped a windfall in contributions from banks and lobbyists since introducing legislation to delay new regulations on debit-card swipe fees.
The complaint cited a Politico report suggesting that Baucus' K Street connections were "warning clients against giving campaign contributions to Tester's Republican challenger Rep.
Tester denied any wrongdoing. During Tester's senior year in college, he married Sharla Bitz. Before his election to the Senate, Tester had never lived more than two hours away from his north-central Montana farm. A January profile of Tester focused on the fact that he butchers and brings his own meat with him to Washington. He said "Taking meat with us is just something that we do We like our own meat.
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. This article is about the Montana farmer and U. For the Wisconsin merchant and state Assemblyman, see John Tester.
Montana United States Senate election, United States Senate election in Montana, Retrieved December 10, Retrieved August 12, Archived April 2, , at the Wayback Machine. Retrieved December 26, Senate" , NewWest , August 28, Jon Tester D-MT ". Jon Tester D ". Retrieved July 10, Retrieved October 3, Senate" , Billings Gazette , May 24, Johnson, Tester routs Morrison, will challenge Burns: Embattled incumbent beats Keenan by 3-to-1 margin , Billings Gazette June 6, The New York Times.
Retrieved October 6, Tester leads GOP challenger by 4 in Montana". Retrieved 27 September Retrieved April 23, Retrieved 21 March Maybe we should look at single-payer health care". Retrieved 20 March Archived from the original on January 28, Retrieved March 30, Retrieved June 21, Retrieved 5 February Stem Cell Elections in ". Retrieved 9 March Retrieved 25 March DACA reaction shows how immigration has become a litmus test for Democrats".
Retrieved 24 March Jon Tester On Health Care". Retrieved 29 March Retrieved 5 October Archived from the original on September 26, Retrieved September 18, Tester pushing for help for Montana's gun manufacturers".
Tester with campaign contributions". Dem Senator 'Cracked Down on Lobbyists ' ". Tester Goes to Washington". Archived January 6, , at the Wayback Machine. Article quoted at Jon Tester's official Senate website. The Right Man to Represent Montana".
United States Senators from Montana. Power Carter Clark Dixon T. Montana's current delegation to the United States Congress. Current statewide political officials of Montana. Steve Daines Jon Tester. Greg Gianforte , At-large representative. Current United States Senators. Pence R — President Pro Tempore: Susan Collins Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry: Richard Shelby Armed Services: Mike Enzi Commerce, Science, and Transportation: John Thune Energy and Natural Resources: Lisa Murkowski Environment and Public Works: John Barrasso Ethics Select: Orrin Hatch Foreign Relations: Ron Johnson Indian Affairs: John Hoeven Intelligence Select: Chuck Grassley Rules and Administration: Roy Blunt Small Business and Entrepreneurship: Jim Risch Veterans' Affairs: Bob Casey Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry: Patrick Leahy Armed Services: Bernie Sanders Commerce, Science, and Transportation: Bill Nelson Energy and Natural Resources: Maria Cantwell Environment and Public Works: Tom Carper Ethics Select: Ron Wyden Foreign Relations: Claire McCaskill Indian Affairs: Tom Udall Intelligence Select:
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