We don’t know what’s wrong with the rest of the country, but Montana Republicans had a picture-perfect night.
Whether or not Donald Trump will win re-election in light of COVID-inspired mail-in voting, one thing is for sure. POTUS dragged Montana Republicans across the finish line last night. In a record-breaking solid red wave, every single Republican running for federal or statewide office won their election. No doubt, the president’s overwhelming popularity in the state brought out Trump voters who, while they might otherwise have not voted, stuck with the GOP in their down-ballot.
Although a quarter of precincts haven’t yet reported, there isn’t a race on the federal or statewide ballot that can’t be called. And boy, did Democrats suffer a nightmare of epic proportions.
For the first time in 16 years, Montana will have a Republican Governor, Greg Gianforte. Gianforte, who has had mixed success in political candidacy, defeated Democrat Lt. Governor, Mike Cooney (currenlty 54% – 42%).
Meanwhile, Matt Rosendale easily bested his opponent, an incredibly liberal gun-grabber, Kathleen Williams (currently 56% – 44%).
And of significant national importance, relatively unpopular Montana incumbent (thanks to his support of the Water Compact and federal control of public lands), Steve Daines, soundly defeated Goveror Steve Bullock – the most towering political figure in Montana – for the U.S. Senate. That race is currently 55% – 45%.
Austin Knudsen absolutely smoked novice politico, Raph Graybill, in his bid for Attorney General (58% – 42%).
Meanwhile, Troy Downing picked up the win for State Auditor (55% – 40%). Elsie Arntzen won her race for State Superintendent (52% – 44%). Christi Jacobson won her race for Secretary of State in the largest vote differential of the evening (59% to 41%).
And, although it was no surprise and will not significantly help President Trump make it to 270 electoral votes, Montana has so far voted for him by nearly a 15% margin – much closer to 2016 than anyone has predicted (except the Montana Daily Gazette, which has said repeatedly that Montana polling averages are off by nearly 8% points – something that has now been vindicated as a spot-on prediction).
Meanwhile, Republicans gained ground in the statehouse, with at least 67 Republicans elected which gives it a super-majority. Notable wins include teenage newcomers to the State House, 18-year-old Mallerie Stromswald and 20-year-old Braxton Mitchell.
Regardless of who resides at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave in Washington D.C., Montana should have the necessary conservative muscle in office to help – or impede – whatever might be coming out of the federal government as it applies to the Big Sky State.