State Sen. Greg Jergeson — now D-Havre — announced at the Pasma Peck Hill County Democrat fundraising dinner tonight he now has a Havre address and will run for the Montana Senate in 2014.
Jergeson said his new address has a couple of added benefits.
“This November I get to vote for Tim Solomon for mayor,” he said was one.
The other was, if he wins his election bid, “I will end up with one (U.S. Sen.) Jon Tester as one of my constituents,” he said.
After terming out of the Senate after 22 years of service early last decade, then serving eight years on the Public Service Commission — including six years as chair — before he termed out of that office, then-Chinook resident Jergeson ran for the Senate again in 2012.
He won that election, but lost the chance to run again due to redistricting.
He now lives in an immense Senate district created through the redistricting, stretching from the Canadian border through Liberty and western Hill counties and Chouteau County and the northeastern corner of Cascade County.
No Republicans, or other Democrats, have announced their intention to run for the seat as of today.
Dirk Adams, a rancher from Wilsall north of Livingston in Park County, also spoke at the dinner. Adams has declared his intent to run for the Senate seat now held by Democrat Max Baucus. Baucus has announced he will not run for re-election to the seat he has held since 1978.
Two other potential candidates for the seat also spoke, although neither confirmed they would run for the U.S. Senate.
John Bohlinger, who served two terms as a Republican lieutenant governor under Democrat Brian Schweitzer, talked about the importance of the Democrats holding the seat, but did not announce he would run. He said he always was a moderate Republican, and worked with Democrats while he served as a legislature and passed many progressive bills, Bohlinger said.
Now he would run as an independent or a Democrat, he said.
“There is no place for moderates in today’s Republican Party,” Bohlinger said.
Lt. Gov. John Walsh, who said Wednesday he is strongly considering running for the seat, did not mention that in Havre tonight. He spoke of his background in the military — he served for 33 years in the Montana Army National Guard, retiring from his position as adjutant general leading the Montana Guard to run with Gov. Steve Bullock in 2012 — and focused on the work he and Bullock have done in their first year in office.
And Walsh, and others including Tester, who was the last speaker at the dinner, urged the Hill County Democrats to continue their work finding, and helping elect, Democratic candidates in the state and national elections in 2014.