Tester reviews 2017, shares goals for 2018

by KPAX, Kent Luetzen

MISSOULA – Going into 2018, Senator Jon Tester (D-MT) will have many issues on his plate, one being a Senate re-election run.

On Tuesday, however, while speaking at a Kiwanis luncheon in Missoula, Tester looked back at 2017 and his year working for Montanans.

“We’ve seen a 400-percent increase with people that are calling and emailing and writing letters, and that’s pretty amazing because that civic engagement is good,” Tester said. “We’re able to take those inputs and get some good ideas from them and end up with pieces of legislation that work for Montanans.”

Tester believes the political atmosphere in Washington D.C. is the reason for a spike in public comments to his office. He will be kicking his year off by working on a Veterans Affairs bill, Regulation relief for Community banks and a Blackfoot-Clearwater bill which deals with outdoor recreation.

Tester hinted towards an infrastructure bill in 2018, which the White House is preparing to unveil.

“If we end up getting put on an infrastructure bill… how we pay for the infrastructure bill is incredibility important,” Tester said. “Quite frankly, in a state like Montana, toll roads don’t work and they’re not going to work, so we actually have to get something that does work for rural states like Montana.”

As for the recent passing of the tax overhaul bill, Tester said Montanans will see a benefit, but that future generations will be paying for those benefits with an increase in national debt.