Major parties sometimes help third-party spoilers. Governor Steve Bullock leads in the Montana Senate race, and Republicans are trying to use the Greens to siphon votes from him.
A recently formed political action committee that’s campaigning for a Green Party candidate in Montana’s high-profile U.S. Senate race is using a communications firm with ties to Montana Republicans, records show.
The Go Green Montana PAC paid $27,000 this month to Arena, a Salt Lake City firm, for digital ads, mailings and a website to support Green Party candidate Wendie Fredrickson.
Campaign-finance records also show that the Montana Republican Party and Republican candidates in Montana, including U.S. Sen. Steve Daines, have paid Arena $1.7 million for its services over the last decade.Sandi Luckey, the executive director of the Montana Democratic Party, said the Go Green Montana PAC is “just the latest escalation in the ongoing Republican effort to mislead Montanans and meddle in our elections.”
On March 25, Mike Dennison reported at MTN News:
The Montana Republican Party helped finance the effort to qualify the Green Party for the state’s 2020 elections, paying $100,000 to groups that hired or financed mostly out-of-state signature-gathers, MTN News has learned.
The party confirmed Tuesday that it was behind the effort, but had reported late last month, on documents filed with the Federal Election Commission, that it made an initial $50,000 payment in January to the Texas company that hired signature-gatherers.
Montana Republican Party Executive Director Spenser Merwin told MTN News in a statement that the GOP wanted to “provide more choice for Montanans this November,” and noted that state Democrats have worked to “limit ballot access” to minor political parties.