Max Baucus

Former Montana Senator, and current Ambassador to China, Max Baucus returned to his home state for the first time in over a year Monday night.

Baucus addressed a Montana Chamber of Commerce gathering in Helena. He said China's economic output is on track to surpass the U.S. in about 10 years, but that means increased opportunities for some Montana industries, such as energy. Montana can supply China with coal, and with technology to burn that coal cleanly, now that China has agreed to slow its growth in carbon emissions.

Courtesy photo

Montana’s Senators are back from Washington and gathering input on transportation and timber issues.

Friday Democrat Jon Tester convened several panels in Helena to prepare for when the federal highway bill expires in May. He invited representatives from transportation, Chamber of Commerce and agriculture and construction companies to talk about the importance of good highways and bridges in Montana.

Flickr user SBebee

BREAKING NEWS: We're following up on this story and will have more on the air starting at 5 p.m. Below is the press release announcing the legislation issued this morning.

In a joint press conference today, Senators Jon Tester, John Walsh and Senator-elect Steve Daines announced a landmark legislative package that includes eight Montana-based lands and resources bills.

Meg O'Leary

Governor Steve Bullock’s eight day trade mission to China has concluded and participants say Montana still has a lot to learn about conducting business there.

Montana exported over $100 million worth of goods to China last year, but state officials say we can do more.

Democratic Senator John Walsh has decided to drop out of the U.S. Senate race. In a public statement released today, Walsh said:

The 2007 research paper from my time at the U.S. Army War College has become a distraction from the debate you expect and deserve. I am ending my campaign so that I can focus on fulfilling the responsibility entrusted to me as your U.S. Senator. You deserve someone who will always fight for Montana, and I will.

Dan Boyce

Anaconda High School teacher and chair of the Montana Board of Regents, Angela McLean has been selected as the state’s new Lieutenant Governor.

The move comes after Bullock tapped Lieutenant Governor John Walsh to serve the remainder of Max Baucus’s U.S. Senate term, who left last week to become the U.S. Ambassador to China.

Governor Steve Bullock announced the appointment of Angela McLean from her fifth period American government class on Monday.

Her experience experience compliments the Governor’s policy agenda.

Walsh appointed as Montana's next U.S. Senator

Feb 7, 2014
Dan Boyce

Just one day after Montana’s Senior Senator, Max Baucus, was confirmed as the next U.S. Ambassador to China, Governor Steve Bullock has appointed his Lieutenant Governor, John Walsh, to serve the remainder of Baucus’s term. The move keeps the post in Democratic hands and may bolster the party’s hopes of keeping the seat in November.

MTPR News in Washington D.C.-- in pictures

Feb 3, 2014
Dan Boyce

MTPR News Director Sally Mauk and Capitol Reporter Dan Boyce spent much of last week in Washington D.C. covering Sen. Max Baucus's confirmation hearing to be the next U.S. ambassador to China. Sally and Dan spoke with all three members of the state's congressional delegation about the Baucus legacy.

Click on the links below to hear the rest of our coverage.

Dan Boyce

Life for Bozeman-native Steve Daines has changed a lot in the last couple of years--from more than a quarter century in the private sector to Montana’s sole Congressional Seat.

Now, the Republican Representative has his sights set on another office, that of exiting Montana Senator Max Baucus.

Capitol Reporter Dan Boyce spent last week in Washington D.C. reporting on Montana’s federal delegation and spends a couple hours in the Washington life of Congressman Daines.

N. Fork Flathead River
Katrin Frye

A major element for protection of the North Fork Flathead River Valley moved forward this week. Representative Steve Daines announced a bill that retires many oil and gas leases in the area unanimously passed the House Natural Resources Committee. The North Fork Watershed Protection Act of 2013 would restrict new mineral development in the North Fork of the Flathead.

This House bill mirrors one introduced by Senators Jon Tester and Max Baucus.

Montana Senator Max Baucus is having a nostalgic week. Baucus is expected to soon be confirmed by the Senate as the new Ambassador to China.

This week, he has had a confirmation hearing before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, a weekly morning coffee reception for visiting Montanans—probably his last—and a lot of interviews about the impending end of his near 40-year career in Congress.

News Director Sally Mauk sat down with the Senator in his D.C. office to discuss his new venture and his public service legacy.

Senator Jon Tester discusses his longtime mentor

Jan 29, 2014

Senator Jon Tester will become Montana’s Senior Senator-- in only his 2nd term—once Senator Max Baucus is, as expected, confirmed as the new U.S. Ambassador to China.

News Director Sally Mauk is in Washington D.C. this week, interviewing both Senators about the transition.

In tonight’s feature interview, Sally talks with Senator Tester about his longtime mentor. Tester says he was star struck when he first met Baucus at an economic development meeting in Havre in the late 90s, just before Tester himself entered politics.

As reported earlier, Montana's senior Senator Max Baucus has been nominated to be the next ambassador to China - pending confirmation by the Senate.

A Missoula writer and member of the Blackfeet Tribe has announced her run for Montana’s lone U.S. House seat as a Democrat.

Melinda Gopher ran for the seat in 2010, coming in third in the Democratic Primary. She is running a campaign focused on bucking the Democratic establishment.

“We have a power elite that has abused the Indian vote for a long time in the state, and that power elite has been led by Senator Baucus,” Gopher said.

Dan Boyce

The only Democrat so far to file for Montana's U.S. House seat in 2014 officially announced his campaign Monday. John Lewis, former State Director for Sen. Max Baucus, held the kick-off event for his campaign from a Helena union hall about two months after submitting paperwork for the bid.   

Lewis opened the kick-off by unveiling this campaign video:

Montana's Lieutenant Governor, John Walsh has announced he is running for the U.S. seat being vacated by Sen. Max Baucus in 2014. 

Walsh announced his intentions today, launching this website complete with a more than two minute video outlining his 33 years serving in the Montana National Guard, including serving as Adjutant General from 2008 to 2012, when he left the guard to join the ticket of then-gubernatorial candidate Steve Bullock.

Dan Boyce

 The shaking of hands and rubbing of elbows is winding down in Butte.

The Montana Economic Development Summit wrapped up in the Mining City Tuesday.

Senator Max Baucus’s office and the Montana chamber of commerce led the organization for the event.

Corporate sponsors paid the quarter million dollar bill for the two-day summit, letting anyone who signed up to come for free.

Capitol Reporter Dan Boyce says about 4,000 total attendees registered  to not only hear from some of the world’s leading business executives, but also to network.

The Montana Jobs Summit   gives the following biography for Facebook Chief Operating Officer Sheryl Sandberg:

Sen. Max Baucus' Montana Jobs Summit kicked off today with remarks from some of the world's most respected business leaders.

The two-day summit is featuring keynote addresses ranging from Google Executive Chairman Eric Schmit, Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg and SpaceX and Tesla Motors Founder Elon Musk.

Sen. Baucus introduces Musk in this 15 minute presentation.

Dan Boyce

US Sen. Max Baucus hashed out ideas for federal tax reform Wednesday with a council of Montanans representing a number of different industries. The Democratic leader of the powerful Senate Finance Committee is making broad tax overhaul a major priority before leaving office in 2014.

The federal tax code has not been overhauled since 1986. Baucus said about 15,000 changes have been made to the code since that time, making it overly-complex and causing the US to lose some of its competitive edge in a global marketplace.

Montana political observers spotted their first Democrat to officially file for U.S. Senate Wednesday.

Dirk S. Adams, a Wilsall Rancher, told Lee Newspapers Reporter Mike Dennison he decided about a month ago to get into the race and that it’s his first time running for office.