Melinda Gopher Enters Montana U.S. House Race, Running on Progressive Platform
This past week, a second Democrat entered the race for Montana’s lone U.S. House seat. Melinda Gopher of Missoula announced that she will be running against John Lewis in the Democratic primary.
Gopher described herself as a progressive and says that the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee needs to stop attempting to decide which candidate can win the Montana primary.
“That whole attitude that Montana voters no longer really have a say in who represents them, I think that that’s probably arrogant, and I think that the voters of Montana should be the ones to decide,” Gopher said. “I think what distinguishes me from John Lewis is the fact that he is Baucus’ state director.”
Gopher disagrees with Senator Max Baucus on the Affordable Care Act and would push instead for a single payer health insurance system. She says that Max Baucus has used his power and money to try to select Montana’s candidate, instead of letting the people choose.
“He had a lot of money and I think that he put that money behind candidates,” Gopher said. “He actually wants to choose for Montana voters. Certainly the influence [Baucus] and Tester have held… fundraisers, early endorsements, that doesn’t engender any confidence. People are already frustrated and sick of what goes on in D.C. and that just adds to it.”
Gopher wants to see an increase in the minimum wage, but said that her overarching issue will be climate change. Gopher said that the federal government should force oil companies to invest 71 billion dollars of their cash reserves into green energy.