For First Time Since 1940s, Montana Official Could Lose Seat for Campaign Violation
“In the 2010 election cycle, there were a number of legislative candidates that worked with a third party group called Western Tradition Partnership and some other third party groups,” Motl said. “We’ve issued a series of decisions on that relationship, 19 decisions, in fact, involving five candidates. One of those five candidates is a sitting legislator.”
Republican Representative Mike Miller of Helmville now faces the possibility of being removed from his office if found guilty of campaign violations, something that hasn’t happened for at least as long as Montana has had an Commissioner of Political Practices.
“It’s not a new remedy,” said Motl. “It actually happened once before in 1940 where a county attorney brought this sort of complaint before a judge and the judge removed the Cascade County Sheriff from office for campaign violations. So, it has happened before, but in the modern era, it has not happened.”
If District Judge Kathy Seeley agrees with Motl that Miller is guilty of illegally coordinating with Western Tradition Partnership, she may simply choose to impose a fine. Motl inferred that a fine, rather than removal from office, is the most likely scenario.