Montana voters with go to the polls Tuesday to decide which Republican will be up against Democratic Sen. John Tester this November.
Tester, who is among a handful of red-state Democrats up for reelection this year, is running unopposed. Republicans are pouring millions into this Senate race. The deluge of money speaks to how badly Republicans want to unseat Tester, the ranking member of the Veterans Affairs Committee. In a state Donald Trump won by 20 points, Tester is one of the most vulnerable Senate Democrats in 2018.
Polls close at 10 pm Eastern time. We will have live results below, powered by Decision Desk.
Four Republicans are running for the chance to kick out Tester. But the primary has heated up between Montana state auditor Matt Rosendale and retired state Judge Russ Fagg.
Rosendale is the favorite among national Republicans and prominent conservative groups. He’s been endorsed by Sens. Ted Cruz (R-TX), Rand Paul (R-KY), and Mike Lee (R-UT), and conservative groups like the Club for Growth, Restoration PAC, and Americas PAC are spending millions on campaign ads for him.
Meanwhile, Fagg, who has less money than Rosendale, has the backing of the state’s Republican political establishment, including a number of former governors and Congress members. Former Republican Govs. Marc Racicot and Stan Stephens and former Reps. Denny Rehberg and Rick Hill have all endorsed Fagg.
Conservative outside groups are spending millions to boost Rosendale, but it has the potential to backfire in a state where local ties are paramount. Rosendale moved to Montana from Maryland nearly 20 years ago, while Fagg is a fourth-generation Montanan and is painting Rosendale as a carpetbagger. The fact that outside groups are going all in for Rosendale could irk the locals.