Bullock campaign fined $3,000 for reporting violations involving state aircraft

Montana Gov. Steve Bullock’s campaign has agreed to pay a $3,000 fine to the Montana Commissioner of Political Practices to resolve a complaint stemming from Bullock’s use of a state aircraft during his 2016 re-election campaign. A three-page settlement document posted to the Commissioner of Political Practices’ website late Friday afternoon “finally resolves” the allegations against Bullock’s campaign committee, Friends of Steve Bullock.

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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 Montana laws in his effort to defeat Republican Ron Arthun in the 2010 primary election for the Senate District 31 seat.

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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 Commissioner of Political Practices Jonathan Motl properly investigated the case against Wittich, and they affirmed District Judge Ray Dayton’s decision to fine Wittich $68,232.58.

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Presidential Race to Return to Montana

By John S. Adams, Editor-in-Chief

(Editor’s Note: This is the first of two stories looking at the 2016 primary race ahead of Montana’s June 7 primary election. On Tuesday we’ll look at the Democratic race.)

In 2008, with Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton nearly deadlocked in their race for the Democratic presidential nomination, Montana voters headed to the polls on June 3 not knowing who the party’s nominee would be.

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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 against Wittich for violations of campaign finances laws, told reporters after the trial that the jury’s decision will have lasting impacts on Montana elections.

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