>>Zinke, Tranel Close In U.S. House District 1
(Missoula, MT) — Former Congressman and U.S. Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke was holding a narrow lead overnight in the race for Montana’s First Congressional District. With 44-percent of precincts reporting, Zinke had captured 50-percent of the vote to Democratic candidate Monica Tranel’s 46-percent and Libertarian John Lamb’s four-percent. Zinke held a 65-hundred vote lead over Tranel in the unofficial count.
>>Rosendale Cruises To Re-election In U.S. House District 2
(Helena, MT) — Republican Congressman Matt Rosendale will serve a second term. Rosendale cruised to re-election Tuesday night, running up more votes than all three of his challengers combined. Rosendale polled more than 56-percent of the vote, while independent Gary Buchanan collected just over 22-percent, Democrat Penny Ronning totaled slightly more than 20-percent and Libertarian Sam Rankin collected one-point-three percent. Congressional District Two covers all of eastern and much of central Montana, including Helena, Great Falls, and Billings.
>>Electronic Privacy Amendment Winning Big, “Born Alive” Initiative Trailing
(Helena, MT) — Montana voters really like a proposed constitutional amendment to include electronic data and communications in the clause that protects against unreasonable searches and seizures. Constitutional Amendment 48 had 82-percent support overnight with about 55-percent of precincts reporting. A second ballot measure, the so-called “Born Alive Act,” was trailing. Legislative Referendum 131 would require medical professionals to provide life-sustaining care to any “born-alive” infant, regardless of the child’s health prognosis or wishes of the parents. It was trailing by 53-percent to 47-percent.
>>State Supreme Court Justices Turning Back Challenges
(Helena, MT) — Montana Supreme Court Justices Jim Rice and Ingrid Gustafson appeared to be turning back challenges in overnight vote counting. Rice was running away from challenger Bill D’Alton with 77-percent of the vote to D’Alton’s 22-percent with 55-percent of precincts reporting. Gustafson was in a closer race, pulling 54-percent of the vote to challenger James Brown’s 45-percent.