By Matt B. Walen
The Hill County Democratic Central Committee is readying for a war with the rival Republicans in the upcoming city elections. The battles will be fought over four city council seats.
Democratic Chairwoman Debi Friede said the committee will continue to work hard to maintain the Democratic domination its held on the city council.
We elect people who will represent us, Friede said Tuesday night during the monthly meeting at the VFW Club.
Vice Chair Ray Peck said the Hill County Democrats will continue to work hard at getting their candidates elected instead of throwing money into the political arena like their rivals do.
If everyone pulls a little weight it makes the job that much easier, Peck said. We will win the election by working hard. We have always outworked the Republicans.
Peck, who attended a recent Northcentral Montana Pachyderm Club meeting in Havre, said the Republicans have capable candidates. But so do the Democrats, he said.
Democrat Douglas Larson will be challenged by Republican John McLain in Ward 1. In Ward 2, Democrat Vicki Clouse will match up against Republican Gary Schubert. Ward 3 will see Democrat Jack Brandon challenged by Republican Kevin Allison.
Republicans Shane Ford and Ronald Wolford will battle for the right to challenge Democrat incumbent Emily Mayer-Lossing.
The city primary election will be held Sept. 14 with the general election slated for Nov. 2.
The citys primary candidates from Wards 1, 2 and 3 will move forward to the general election. The winning candidate from the Ward 4 Republican contest will move up from the primary election to face Mayer-Lossing from Ward 4 in Novembers general election.
The committee also voted to keep its outdoor booth at the Great Northern Fair near the free stage with the option of moving the booth location to a better area, if the opportunity arises.
There was some concern expressed by some members about the Hill County Republicans moving their booth into the commercial building. But the crowded area leaves a bad taste in some of the Democrats mouths.
Tom Farnham, a Havre City Councilman and fair board member, said many people like to talk politics privately and dont like the closeness the commercial building offers its tenants during the fair.
Patricia Cotter, a nonpartisan Supreme Court candidate, was scheduled to speak to the committee, but was unable to attend due to a scheduling conflict.
Cotter of Great Falls has two challengers for the seat. The other two candidates include Jeffrey T. Renz of Missoula and Chris Tweeten of Helena.
Peck said Cotter passed along word that she does intend to speak to the committee at a future date.