Jon Tester (D-MT)

Jon Tester

U.S. Senator Jon Tester is running for re-election to represent Montana. He ran unopposed in the Democratic primary on June 5, and now he is set to face off against the Republican candidate, Matt Rosendale, in the November 6 general elections.

Background and Achievements

Jon Tester was born in Montana, and he is a third-generation Montana farmer. He pursued a music degree at the University of Great Falls, and then taught music at an elementary school. He was the chairman of the Big Sandy School Board of Trustees. Additionally, he has served on the Big Sandy Soil Conservation Service Committee and the Chouteau County Agricultural Stabilization and Conservation Service Committee. He was elected to the Montana Senate in 1999 and served as minority whip, minority leader, and president of the Montana Senate.

Tester has 100% ratings from the Planned Parenthood Action Fund, NARAL Pro-Choice America, the NAACP, the National Education Association, Environment America, and the AFL-CIO. He also has a 96% rating from the Alliance for Retired Americans and a 95% rating from the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights.

Positions on Key Issues

  • Supports women’s rights to make their own health care decisions, Title X family planning programs, and Planned Parenthood funding
  • Advocates for the protection of Medicare and Social Security
  • Advocates for LGBT rights
  • Supports comprehensive immigration reform
  • Advocates for a single-payer healthcare system
  • Supports the Paycheck Fairness Act to end the gender pay gap
  • Supports public education
  • Strong supporter of AFL-CIO and organized labor unions

Prospects & Opponents

Jon Tester was first elected to the U.S. Senate in 2006. His Republican opponent, state auditor Matt Rosendale, defeated 3 other candidates in the Republican primary. Rosendale has been endorsed by both President Trump and Vice President Pence. Rosendale is also endorsed by right-wing Republican Senators Ted Cruz (TX), Rand Paul (KY), and Mike Lee (UT) as well as right-wing national groups including the Club for Growth Research PAC (backed by the Koch Brothers), the Restoration PAC, and the American PAC. This race has been rated Lean Democratic by the Cook Political Report.


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