Election 2020: State races draw endorsements from farmers, Quist, End Citizens United

They’ve been campaigning for months already and there’s still more than a year to go, but the Montanans vying for state and national offices in November 2020 are picking up new endorsements by the week.

Between now and Election Day, the Missoula Current will regularly publish a roundup of any endorsement announcements received during the preceding week, with a brief explanation of why each group is backing a candidate.

After that, it’s up to you to weather the months ahead, and – finally – make a decision and cast your ballot.

End Citizens United: The grassroots group leading the fight against corporate money in politics in the wake of the Supreme Court’s Citizens United decision has endorsed the candidacy of Kathleen Williams for the Montana Democratic Party’s nomination for U.S. House.

Kathleen Williams, Democratic candidate for U.S. House

“By rejecting corporate PAC money, Kathleen Williams is proving that she’s accountable to Montanans, not corporate special interests,” End Citizens United President Tiffany Muller in announcing the endorsement.

“During her time in Montana’s Legislature, Kathleen proved to be a true reformer by voting to increase transparency in elections and curbing the influence of big money special interests,” Muller said.

Williams said she supports campaign finance reforms aimed at limiting the influence of big money in politics. Those include legislation cracking down on corruption, increasing transparency and disclosure in political fundraising and spending, and a constitutional amendment overturning the Citizens United Supreme Court decision. She has also announced she won’t take corporate PAC money.

In the Montana Legislature, Williams was a strong supporter of Montana’s DISCLOSE Act, one of the strongest campaign finance transparency laws in the nation. She also fought to keep Montana campaign finance limits low, and always voted for the interests of her constituents instead of lobbyists for the well-connected.

Shane Morigeau, Democratic candidate for state auditor

Rob Quist: Former U.S. House candidate and country music singer Rob Quist has endorsed the candidacy of Shane Morigeau for state auditor.

In a written announcement, Quist said: “I’m throwing my support behind Shane Morigeau for state auditor because I can’t think of anyone more qualified to give Montanans a voice in our state auditor’s office. As a lawyer, legislator and advocate, Shane led the charge to lower health care costs and protect Montanans from abuse. Shane proves his leadership and character in everything he does and I’m proud to endorse him because I know he’ll take the same leadership to the state auditor’s office.”

Montana Farmers Union: It’s not technically an endorsement, but Montana Sen. Steve Daines, who faces reelection in November 2020, recently received the first Friend of Montana Farmers Union award for his work in Congress.

Visiting members of the Montana group presented Daines with the citation during a visit to his D.C. office earlier this month.

He responded: “Fighting for Montana’s farmers is one of my highest priorities as Montana’s U.S. senator, and I’m honored to continue this fight.”

The Montana Farmers Union sent a delegation to Washington, D.C., earlier this week to meet with members of the state’s congressional delegation, including Sen. Steve Daines. (Courtesy photo)