MTPR

Eric Whitney

News Director

Eric Whitney is the news director for Montana Public Radio.

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State Rep. Amanda Curtis, D - Butte
Mike Albans

Butte Schoolteacher and State Lawmaker Amanda Curtis made it official Saturday: She is seeking the Democratic party’s nomination to run for Montana’s U.S. House seat. That seat would become open if Congressman Ryan Zinke is confirmed to be Secretary of Interior in the Trump administration, which appears likely. A special election would be held for Zinke’s seat 85 to 100 days after he vacated it.

Rep. Ryan Zinke at his Interior Secretary confirmation hearing Tuesday
CSPAN

A Senate committee is expected to vote tomorrow on Representative Ryan Zinke’s nomination to be Interior Secretary in the Trump administration. It will be the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, the same one Zinke testified in front of for nearly four hours last Tuesday.

Today marks the inauguration of Donald Trump, the 45th President of the United States.
Michael-Vadon (CC-BY-SA-2)

Montana’s senators offered their reactions to the inauguration of President Donald Trump today. Here’s the complete statement Republican Steve Daines sent to the media.

Rep. Ryan Zinke at his Interior Secretary confirmation hearing Tuesday
CSPAN

"It is an honor to appear before this esteemed Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources," Congressman Ryan Zinke said Tuesday, kicking off nearly four hours of testimony at his confirmation hearing to be Secretary of Interior in the Donald Trump administration.

He answered questions from Democratic and Republican senators, and had this exchange with Vermont Independent Bernie Sanders:

Sanders: President-elect Trump has stated in his view that climate change is a, "hoax." Is President-elect Trump right? Is climate change a hoax? 

CSPAN

Montana Congressman Ryan Zinke, who is President-elect Donald Trump’s pick for Secretary of Interior, had a four-hour confirmation hearing before the Senate Energy and Natural Resources committee on Tuesday.

To Native healthcare leaders, Obamacare provides a great opportunity to create jobs.
Josh Burnham

If you’re wondering how repealing the Affordable Care Act will impact Montana, Indian country is a good place to look.

To Native healthcare leaders, Obamacare provides a great opportunity to create jobs.

As Congress debates repealing the Affordable Care Act, the Obama administration is making a push to get as many people as possible to shop for health insurance via healthcare.gov.

 Tony Lapinski is a Montana veteran who's had trouble using Veterans Choice
Mike Albans

Both of Montana’s U.S. Senators have sent letters chastising the company that runs the Veterans Choice healthcare program in Montana and 36 other states.

Veterans Choice is supposed to help vets get appointments with private health care providers if they live far from a VA facility, or have been waiting a long time for a VA appointment. It was created in 2014, and has been plagued with problems since the beginning.

Senator Jon Tester at the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes Health Department Saturday
Eric Whitney

Senator Jon Tester is asking for feedback on what would happen if Congress and the Trump administration repeal the Affordable Care Act as they’ve been promising.

On Friday and Saturday he visited Libby, Kalispell, and Missoula to meet with health care providers and leaders at hospitals, clinics and public health departments.

A graph from the Montana Budget and Policy Center's New Report
Montana Budget and Policy Center

If Congress and the Trump administration repeal the Affordable Care Act, 142,000 Montanans could potentially lose their health insurance coverage.

That’s according to a new report from the Montana Budget and Policy Center.

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