Posted inCampaign SpendingElectionsGovernmentNewsPolitics

Complaint against ‘Dark Money’ prosecutor dismissed

HELENA — Allegations that a high-profile state-appointed attorney broke some of the very same campaign practices laws he was hired to prosecute have been dropped. Deputy Commissioner of Political Practices Kirsten Madsen, in a 19-page order issued Friday, dismissed a complaint filed late last year against Billings attorney Gene Jarussi by Republican political consultant Jake Eaton. […]

Posted inCampaign SpendingCorruptionCrime and JusticeElectionsGovernmentMontana LegislatureNewsPoliticsPublic Lands

Montana Growth Network settles long-standing political practices lawsuit

HELENA – A dark money political organization that spent hundreds of thousands of dollars during the 2012 election to support conservative candidates for office has settled a lawsuit  accusing it of violating Montana’s campaign finance laws. The Montana Growth Network, headed by former Red Lodge Republican state Sen. Jason Priest, agreed to pay a $30,000 […]

Posted inCampaign SpendingElectionsNewsPolitics

GOP consultant accuses ‘dark money’ prosecutor of campaign violations

Gene Jarussi, the state special attorney general in charge of litigating a series of lawsuits against political candidates for illegal campaign activities, is now himself facing allegations of political misconduct. In a Nov. 27 complaint filed with the Montana Commissioner of Political Practices, Jake Eaton, a Republican political operative from Billings, claims Jarussi and his wife illegally coordinated with Rep. […]

Posted inNews

Wagman reaches settlement in wake of Wittich decision

Just days after the Montana Supreme Court upheld a verdict in the high-profile political corruption lawsuit against former Bozeman lawmaker Art Wittich, a fellow former Republican lawmaker from Livingston has admitted he broke Montana campaign laws in his 2010 primary race. Pat Wagman, who served House representative from Livingston from 2003-2007, conceded that he violated […]

Posted inCampaign SpendingCorruptionCrime and JusticeElectionsGovernmentNewsPolitics

High Court upholds verdict in Wittich corruption case

The Montana Supreme Court on Wednesday agreed with a lower court’s finding that former Republican state lawmaker Art Wittich violated Montana’s campaign finance laws when he illegally coordinated with third-party political groups during his 2010 primary election campaign. In a unanimous 5-0 opinion written by Justice Beth Baker, the state Supreme Court concluded that former […]

Posted inCampaign SpendingCorruptionElectionsGovernmentNewsPolitics

JURY: WITTICH ILLEGALLY COORDINATED

By John S. Adams, Editor-in-Chief HELENA —It took a jury of six men and six women four hours Friday to find Bozeman Republican lawmaker Art Wittich illegally coordinated with non-profit third-party political groups during his 2010 primary election campaign. Montana Commissioner of Political Practices Jonathan Motl, the state elections enforcer who brought the civil lawsuit […]

Posted inCampaign SpendingCorruptionElectionsGovernmentNewsPolitics

Testimony Winds Down in Corruption Trial

By John S. Adams, Editor-in-Chief HELENA — State Rep. Art Wittich, the man accused of accepting illegal in-kind contributions and services from conservative nonprofit groups during his 2010 Senate race, took the witness stand in his own defense Thursday in Lewis and Clark County District Court. Wittich is on trial in a civil lawsuit brought […]

Posted inCampaign SpendingCorruptionElectionsGovernmentNewsPolitics

Former Right to Work Staffers Take Stand in Wittich Trial

Sarah (Anderson) Arnold, a former Right to Work employee, fields questions from Quentin Rhoades, Rep. Art Wittich’s attorney. Photo by Kim Reed. By John S. Adams, Editor-in-Chief HELENA — Jurors heard from two former National Right to Work Committee staffers Tuesday as testimony resumed on day two of state Rep. Art Wittich’s campaign practice lawsuit. […]