Last night, around 9pm, both the House and Senate of the 62nd Montana Legislature adjourned for the final time. After 88 days of unconstitutional, irresponsible, job-killing bills, it is finally over.
Both the Senate and House were able to pass the compromise budget that the Governor and legislative leaders agreed to last week. This proposal reinstates nearly all of the federal money that Republicans sought to reject and send to other states. In addition, it undid many of the irresponsible cuts Republicans made to many of the state’s vital services. Unfortunately, it still drastically cut from the Governor’s proposed budget, which already reduced state spending.
In addition, Republicans stuck to their guns and killed the best jobs bill of the session, the “bonding bill.” This bill is the only bill that is guaranteed to create jobs in the state. Republicans favored proposals that will give huge tax cuts to large out-of-state corporations, with the hope that they create jobs with the money, instead of pocketing it.
At a press conference today, Democrats expressed their disappointment with the way the legislature was run and the results of the Republicans’ partisan agenda. However, Democrats also stated that they were proud of the things they stood for–creating jobs, improving our education system and making sure we continue to have a beautiful state–and the values they fought for.
In addition, Senate Democratic Leader Carol Williams told stories of Republicans coming to her to express their dismay with the Republican actions in the legislature. Sen. Williams assured those in attendance that in 2013 Democrats would come back with larger numbers to fix the damage Republicans had done in 2011.