As the 114th Congress convened this week, U.S. Sen. Jon Tester says he isn't daunted by his new status as the lone Montana Democrat in Congress or by the fact that his party is now the minority in the Senate.

Tester says it's similar to his days in the Montana state legislature when he was also in the minority party. He says despite the Republican majority in Congress, he's optimistic that some of his priorities still could make headway this session.

VA reforms, especially those involving mental health, and a package of bills addressing forest management are among issues Tester thinks could see bipartisan support.

Tester says although he's passionate about a long-term bill to repair the nation's roadways and bridges, it likely will face a far greater challenge with Republicans.