By Krystal Spring/Havre Daily Newsfirstname.lastname@example.org
The Hi-Line community will have the opportunity to hear candidates for Montana's House of Representatives face off on the issues at a candidate forum next week.
The Havre Daily News is sponsoring the event, which begins at 7 p.m. Thursday in the community room of the Holiday Village Shopping Center.
Legislative candidates vying for seats in House Districts 32, 33 and 34 will participate in the forum.
After redistricting combined two districts, Democratic incumbent Jonathan Windy Boy of Rocky Boy and Republican incumbent John Pattison of Glasgow are going head to head for the seat in HD 32. Both candidates plan to attend the forum.
Democratic incumbent Bob Bergren of Havre, a candidate in HD 33, will also participate. His opponent, Republican Kenneth Wilson of Havre, has not yet confirmed that he'll attend.
Havre's John Musgrove, the Democratic incumbent for HD 34, and Republican Andrew Brekke also plan to paricipate in Thursday's candidate forum.
Harvey Brock, publisher of the Havre Daily News said the candidates will be allowed a three-minute opening and closing statements. The candidates will be asked a number of questions submitted by Havre Daily News readers. The candidates will have two minutes to answer each question, with a one- minute rebuttal.
"This gives the candidates the opportunity to talk to the people they want to represent," Brock said. "This may be the only chance the public has to observe and talk to the candidates before the election."
Brock said gubernatorial candidates Bob Brown and Brian Schweitzer were invited to the forum, but are unable to attend.
"I extended the invitation to them in June. They did express some interest at the time but they couldn't find a mutual time to meet," Brock said.
Brock said the forum is an opportunity for the community to hear firsthand the candidates' views on issues the state and the Hi-Line are facing, so voters can make educated decisions at the polls Nov. 2.
"Making informed decisions in the election process is part of being a good citizen," he added.
Questions for the candidates can be e-mailed to Brock at email@example.com or mailed to P.O. Box 431, Havre, MT 59501. Candidate questions will not be accepted the night of the forum.