• State Senate Pushes Back On Unconstitutional Court Action

    By Staff
    March 20, 2024
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    The Montana State Senate is pushing back on a clearly unconstitutional order from the Lewis and Clark County District Court and the Montana Supreme Court regarding a veto override poll of Senate Bill 442. 

    Senate President Jason Ellsworth, R-Hamilton, delivered letters to the Montana Supreme Court, Governor Greg Gianforte, and Secretary of State Christi Jacobsen today explaining the Senate’s position. 

    A majority of the Senate signed both letters. 

    The letters express that the Legislature’s constitutional role and internal rules have been ignored during court proceedings. The bill has been in the Senate’s possession since the bill was vetoed, before the 2023 Legislature adjourned, and remains in the Senate’s possession. The Executive Branch does not have authority to act on a bill that is in the Legislature’s possession, and the Judicial Branch lacks authority to dictate what the Legislature does with the bills in its possession. 

    “Legislators are elected by the people to represent their interests,” said Ellsworth. “We cannot abide a situation where the people’s voice in Helena is ignored by the other branches of government. Separation of powers demands that only the elected officials closest to the people—legislators—may make law. The Judicial Branch is overstepping its constitutional bounds on this matter.” 

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