Poll seeking special session on election integrity fails
A voter takes a sticker after voting in the primary election at the trade center at Flathead County Fairgrounds on Tuesday. (Casey Kreider/Daily Inter Lake)
| April 20, 2022 6:00 PM
HELENA (AP) — Montana lawmakers have rejected an attempt to call a special legislative session to investigate the state's election processes amid continued false claims by former President Donald Trump and his supporters that the 2020 election was stolen.
A poll of 149 lawmakers found just 44 approving a special session by Tuesday's deadline, short of the 75 needed. The secretary of state's tally showed 60 lawmakers rejected the special session and another 45 didn't return their ballots, which counts as a "no" vote. One legislative seat is vacant.
Earlier this year, Republican lawmakers tried to reach an agreement to ask Gov. Greg Gianforte to call a special session to create new voting districts for the Public Service Commission before three federal judges had to decide how to even out the populations in the five districts.
However, GOP leaders were unable to get a commitment from all Republicans to limit the special session to addressing just the voting districts. Gianforte said he would not call a special session without such an agreement.
After the court set the PSC districts for the 2022 elections, 10 lawmakers asked for the poll on whether lawmakers wanted to hold a special session on election integrity.