Montana

Eligible for Recall: Jon Tester (D): elected to second term in 2012, up for reelection in 2018; Steve Daines (R): elected to first term in 2014, up for reelection in 2020.

Signature Requirement: 15% of voters in last election for the Senator

Circulation Time: 90 days

Type of Recall Election: Recall Election Then Special Election

Enacting Provision: Montana Recall Act, passed (11/2/1976)

2-16-603. Officers subject to recall--grounds for recall.
(1) Any person holding a public office of the state or any of its political subdivisions, either by election or appointment, is subject to recall from office. ((1)En. Sec. 4, I.M. No. 73, approved November 2, 1976; amd. Sec. 4, Ch. 364, L. 1977; Sec. 59-614, R.C.M. 1947; (2), (3)En. Sec. 5, I.M. No. 73, approved November 2, 1976; Sec. 59-615, R.C.M. 1947; R.C.M. 1947, 59-614(part), 59-615; amd. Sec. 1, Ch. 159, L. 1983; amd. Sec. 111, Ch. 61, L. 2007.)

Inital Procedure: The process to recall an official in Montana begins with filing a petition with the Secretary of State or the county election administrator and stating the reason for the official being recalled. The only reasons that an official in Montana may be recalled for are physical or mental lack of fitness, incompetence, violation of the oath of office, official misconduct, or conviction of a felony offense. Once the signatures have been gathered they are sent to the secretary of state or the county election administrator for approval. The task of actually approving the signatures is done by the county clerk of each county. Each county clerk has 30 days to approve of disapprove of the signatures.

Click here for a more comprehensive look at the operative language.

Contact Info:
Montana Secretary of State
P.O. Box 202801
Helena, MT 59620-2801
Phone: (406) 444-2034
sos@mt.gov

Court Activity

No current cases.

News & Commentary

Petition Approved for Recall of Montana Sheriff | 07/18/17

GREAT FALLS -- A petition to recall Pondera County Sheriff Carl Suta has been approved by the Pondera County Clerk & Recorder.

The petition is now ready to be circulated. Petitioners will hold a meeting soon to have the circulators notarized and informed.

Petitioners cite incompetence as their reason for recall. Among the allegations are that Suta:

"left the county unprotected by having only one officer on duty for the entire county countless times"
"openly created dating profiles while married and cited sex as a hobby"
"has spoken openly about cases with multiple people in his presence"
"has created a hostile work environment"
is "not someone who takes responsibility for his actions"
"has abused his power by protecting his kids when they've committed offenses"

The petition needs 530 signatures, or 15% of eligible voters from the last election in the county.

Petitioners have 90 days to collect the signatures.

The sheriff declined to comment.

Read more.

Montana Local Officials Seek to Avoid Recall Election | 12/09/13

BOZEMAN -- Bridger Canyon Rural Fire District trustees filed a lawsuit on Dec. 5 to halt the recall election against them.

Trustees Colleen Carnine, Mike Conn, Margaret Foster, Dennis Guentzel and Dave McKee requested an order to stop Gallatin County Clerk and Recorder and Election Administrator Charlotte Mills from conducting the recall election. According to the complaint filed in Gallatin County District Court on Thursday afternoon: Mills sent a letter to the trustees Nov. 27, informing them that a petition to hold a recall for their positions was filed with her office. The petition stated that the reasons all the trustees should be recalled include official misconduct by holding unannounced meetings without public notice or input since December 2012 and for violating their oath of office by failing to uphold the state constitution.

Mills told the trustees they had until Dec. 9 to submit a statement to be placed on the ballot giving reason why each should not be recalled. Board trustees contend that the recall petition doesn't include a clear statement of their alleged acts that constitute recall.

Read more.


Reckless Congress Makes Case for Recall | 12/17/10

"If ever a Congress epitomized the need for more accountability, it's the 111th lame-duck gang. Sorry, that's unfair to gangsters. With most Americans distracted by holiday plans, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, Nevada Democrat, has sprung another Christmas surprise, vowing to ram through a far-left agenda in the waning days of 2010. Last year, he put a giant lump of coal in Americans' stockings with Christmas Eve passage of Obamacare."

Click here for the full story from The Washington Times.

The Right of Recall | 01/25/10

By Peter Ferrara. This article originally appeared on Fox Forum on January 25, 2010.

Congress is out of control. The public overwhelmingly opposes the pending legislation for a government takeover of health care. But Congressional leaders are telling us they don't care. They know best, and they're going to pass it anyway.

We see the same attitude on other issues, from global warming regulation, to taxes, government spending, deficits, federal debt, energy policy, welfare, corporate bailouts, and beyond. Too many of our Congressional "representatives" seem unwilling to listen to the views of their constituents, insisting that they already know it all. They respond to dissenters with name-calling, labeling them yahoos, Nazis, and tea baggers.

Continue reading “The Right of Recall”.

Each state has its own requirements as to the manner in which petitions must be collected, signed and filed. It is imperative that official recall committees are legally formed in each state according to the state laws and regulations. The handling of the petitions must comply with the laws and regulations of each state.