What's good for vets

I have accessed health care through Veterans Affairs since 2002. Greg Gianforte's obvious disdain for the VA troubles me. Within the first day of his nomination for Montana's House seat he bashed it as the poster child for poor health care that should be privatized. I am aware of its shortcomings but the last thing I and the majority of veterans want is to see it privatized.

Sen. Tester works tirelessly to make the system function better for veterans. The solution is a blend of VA and private providers made possible through the Veteran's Choice program. It continues to improve, thanks in large part to Tester, Secretary of Veterans Affairs David Shulkin and the many professional and dedicated VA employees. My recent experience with the Choice program proved excellent.

Sen. Tester needs a partner in the House of Representatives who will work with him, not against him, to strengthen veterans' health care. Gianforte, a member of the rich elite, does not understand working Montanans' needs or our lives. Candidate Rob Quist, on the other hand, has had his own direct experiences with the difficulty of accessing health care, and will provide Tester with the partner he needs to continue improving veterans' health care.

Pat Tucker


Keep it clean

Montana Public Radio KUFM reported on April 18 that Missoula and Bozeman rank nationally 9th and 12th, respectively, for new business creation. A panel of start-up businesses at the recent Missoula gathering of the Montana High Tech Business Alliance said that "a big reason they're thriving is because of the great quality of life here."

Not all Montanans will remember the condition of our natural environment in the early 1970s. Air and water quality around the state had been degraded by industries employing no environmental controls. Montana citizen activists heightened awareness of environmental issues, and now our Constitution says: "The state and each person shall maintain and improve a clean and healthful environment in Montana for present and future generations."

An important citizen oversight body tasked with maintaining our environment is in danger of being eliminated. SB 337 would abolish the Board of Environmental Review. As an example of what would be lost, the Board "has authority and duty to adopt all rules to implement the Clean Air Act of Montana." Please contact Gov. Bullock and urge him to veto this bill that would degrade our Montana quality of life.

Gary Matson


Socialism again, huh?

We have a job opening for the person best qualified to represent Montana in the hugely important position of U.S. Congressman. As such, the candidate must speak for all Americans, not just Montanans. The applicant must have insight into state and national issues as well as international. This election is of particular importance with our congressional seat essential to retaining Republican party advantage. Therefore our candidate's priority must be far above that of personal aspirations or financial gain. This is not simply a "popularity contest." We seek competency, knowledge, values and dedication for the huge responsibilities of this key office.

Montana's average wage is at the bottom. Rob Quist's ability to manage a business or money is lacking. We have major financial problems in Congress such as costly social issues with health care, education, the handicapped and elderly, crime and drug afflictions to name a few.

Greg Gianforte has a proven track record of being a highly successful businessman bringing modern technology, opportunity, wealth and jobs to Montana. His objectives are to further help people better their lives and increase economic security. He recognizes the need to change policies in Washington, D.C., especially those of rogue agencies overreaching their authority, bypassing Congress and inflicting intrusive rules and regulations. We need to restore our resource industries of timber, mining and energy, which were destroyed by unwarranted rules and restrictions. Our abundant water supply must be available for agriculture. It is the private sector with profitable production (not government) that provides for education, health care, roads and other services. It even finances our government, but over-dependency on that ultimately leads to socialistic Third World status. Greg Gianforte is applying for the job of making government more efficient and citizen-friendly. Let's hire Greg Gianforte, promoting him from successful businessman to U.S. Congressman, where he can help lead our country back to prosperity and security.

Clarice Ryan


Ignore the résumés

I urge all Montanans to remain politically involved. Are you happy with Trump's cabinet appointees? Do you want a new congressman who will support his agenda? Our land and water are so much cleaner than before the passage of the clean air and water acts and the creation of the EPA in 1970. Why would we want to return to smog-filled skies and toxic rivers? Family planning and legal abortion help decrease poverty, improve education and improve public health. Do we really want to vote for someone who wants to intrude in our personal lives and take away a couple's ability to decide how many children they have? If you voted for Trump, evaluate what he is doing and don't defend his actions merely because you previously voted for him. Do we want a congressman who will support Trump's tax reductions for the rich while the middle class struggles? Many recent letters are contrasting the resumes of our two candidates in the special election. I think it is more important to look at the candidate's values and what policies they will support or resist. That is why my vote will be for Rob Quist.

Susan Morgan


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