Montana Democrat and Republican Chairs Share Opposing Views
Missoula, MT (KGVO-AM News) - It’s been a difficult Montana Legislative session for the state’s Democrats, meaning few of their bills are being passed since Republicans possess a ‘super majority’.
Despite that majority, Robyn Driscoll, Chair of the Montana Democratic Party made her monthly appearance on Tuesday’s Talk Back show, and was proud of one bill that received bipartisan support.
Democrat and Republican Chairs Appear on Talk Back
“Representative Mary Caferro, a representative out of Helena, who has been in the legislature for a good amount of time has passed House Bill 649,” began Driscoll. “This is a bill which fully funds Medicaid provider rates, and so that will help address community health care shortages and hopefully prevent more nursing home closures.”
Driscoll referenced the fact that despite over $1 billion in what she referred to as an ‘8 pack of bills’ being returned to Montana income and property taxpayers, she said those funds could have been used much more effectively in aiding Montana’s citizens.
Driscoll said the Millions Returned to Taxpayers Could Have Helped Needy Montanans
“Most of those tax breaks and tax cuts of course, go to disproportionately benefit the wealthiest Montanans,” she said. “I would really rather see those dollars go toward health care or towards providing housing or childcare, you know, real pressing needs across the state of Montana that certainly aren't being addressed with this eight pack of bills.”
Montana Republican Party Chairman Don Kaltschmidt (Don K) acknowleged the importance of the income and property tax refunds, but also mentioned another bill that he says will protect Montana children from unnecessary and possibly dangerous transitional surgeries.
“There's one bill that really stands out to me and that's SB 99,” said Kaltschmidt. “SB 99 is a bill that prevents gender transition surgery until our children become adults. It’s very, very common sense and middle of the road. Of course, our Democrat friends across the aisle don't believe in protecting children. Montana’s youth should not be able to make such life-altering decisions.”
Kaltschmidt Referenced a Bill that would Protect Elections
Another bill Kaltschmidt referenced was to protect the integrity of Montana’s elections.
“It clarifies that illegal aliens cannot vote in Montana elections,” he said. “I want to add that every Democrat except one voted against that bill. In other words, common sense says nobody that's illegal, or who is not a citizen of the United States should be able to vote in Montana. Actually, every Democrat voted against it except for one.”
Driscoll and Kaltschmidt appear back to back once a month on KGVO’s Talk Back show.