Montana Free Press

Election 2024 Guide

Montana's candidates for state and federal office.

A digital project by |
Last update: Jul 9, 2024
All RacesFederal DelegationState OfficialsMontana LegislatureOther officesBallot InitiativesVoting info

Through the 2024 election, Montana voters will select candidates to fill 14 Montana-specific federal and state offices — plus 100 House seats and 25 open Senate seats in the state Legislature.

That can be a baffling process to track even for voters who dilligently follow political news. This digital guide, a project of the nonpartisan Montana Free Press newsroom, is an effort make sure basic information is available so voters have the opportunity to cast informed votes.

The 2024 primary election, where voters picked political party nominees to advance to the General Election, was held Tuesday, June 4. The 2024 general election will be held Tuesday, Nov. 5.

Search 2024 Montana candidates by name
This guide includes federal, state-level and legislative candidates. County commissioners and other local positions are excluded.

Federal Delegation

U.S. Senate

One of Montana's two U.S. Senate seats, elected with a statewide vote. Elected to a six-year term.
Map of U.S. Senate

Republican

Candidates defeated in June 4 primary election
Montana's other U.S. Senator, Steve Daines, is up for re-election in 2026.

U.S. House District 1 (West)

Western Montana representative in Congress. District includes Missoula, Bozeman, Kalispell and Butte. Elected to a two-year term.
Map of U.S. House District 1 (West)
Candidates defeated in June 4 primary election
Prior to 2022, Montana was represented by a single congressman elected on a statewide basis.

State Officials

Governor

Montana's chief executive. The governor appoints the heads of most agencies, signs legislation into law and acts as state government's most visible elected official. Elected to a four-year term via a statewide election.
Candidates defeated in June 4 primary election

Secretary of State

Montana's top election official. The secretary of state also oversees business registration and maintains many state records. Elected to a four-year term via a statewide election.

Attorney General

The state's top law enforcement officer and prosecutor. The head of the state Department of Justice, the AG also represents Montana in litigation and leads the Montana Highway Patrol. Elected to a four-year term via a statewide election.
Candidates defeated in June 4 primary election

Superintendent of Public Instruction

The state’s top education official. Elected to a four-year term via a statewide election.
Candidates defeated in June 4 primary election

State Auditor

Montana’s Commissioner of Securities and Insurance. Regulates the insurance industry and investigates fraud. Elected to a four-year term via a statewide election.
Candidates defeated in June 4 primary election

Want original Montana Free Press reporting and analysis sent to your inbox each week?
Sign up for the free MT LOWDOWN newsletter
Delivered Friday afternoons

Montana State Legislature

Montanans elect 100 state representatives to two-year terms and 25 of 50 state senators to four-year terms in each even-year election. This year's election is the first to be conducted using a new legislative district map drawn to account for population shifts recorded by the 2020 census.

Each Senate district is composed of two House districts.

House District 1

Western MontanaEureka, Troy
Map of HD 1
Part of SD 1

Senate District 1

Western MontanaLibby, Troy, Eureka
Map of SD 1
Composed of HD 1 and HD 2
SD 1 is out of cycle in 2024

RSen. Mike Cuffe
will represent the district as a holdover

Montana Supreme Court

State Supreme Court (Chief Justice)

The chief of the state's high court, which takes appeals from lower courts and administers the Montana legal system. Elected to an eight-year term via a statewide election.
Candidates defeated in June 4 primary election

State Supreme Court (Seat 3)

One of seven seats on the state's high court, which takes appeals from lower courts and administers the Montana legal system. Elected to an eight-year term via a statewide election.
Candidates defeated in June 4 primary election

Public Service Commission

Public Service Commission (Seat 2)

One of five seats on the state's utility regulation board, elected to a four-year term. The district spans south-central Montana, including parts of Bozeman and Billings.
Map of Public Service Commission (Seat 2)
Candidates defeated in June 4 primary election

Public Service Commission (Seat 3)

One of five seats on the state's utility regulation board, elected to a four-year term. The district spans central and southwest Montana, including Butte, Dillon, Lewistown, southern Ravalli County and parts of Bozeman and Helena.
Map of Public Service Commission (Seat 3)
Candidates defeated in June 4 primary election

Public Service Commission (Seat 4)

One of five seats on the state's utility regulation board, elected to a four-year term. The district spans northwest Montana, including parts of Missoula and Kalispell.
Map of Public Service Commission (Seat 4)

Ballot initiatives

Issue votes can be placed on the November General Election ballot either by referral from the Legislature or by citizen initiative when backers clear voter signature-gathering thresholds.

As of July 1, no issues had been formally qualified for the 2024 ballot. Backers of an issue that would enshrine abortion rights in the Montana Contitution and two others that would adjust how the state's elections are conducted, have said publicly that they believe they have collected enough signature for their measures to qualify.

To qualify their initiatives for the 2024 ballot, backers needed to submit enough signatures to county election administrators by June 21, 2024. A complete list of proposed 2024 initiatives and their status is available on the Montana Secretary of State's website.

Other ballot items

November general election ballots may also include other items such as county commission races, depending on where in the state you live. June 2024 ballots also asked voters whether they wished to set up local government study commissions to review the structure of their city and county governments.

Common Voting Questions

When are Montana’s 2024 elections?

Voters will pick which candidates advance to the November general election in the June primary, which is scheduled for Tuesday, June 4. Voters will pick the candidates who will ultimately fill each office on the ballot in the November election, which is set for Tuesday, Nov. 5.

Who runs Montana’s elections?

Montana elections are administered at the county level. The process is overseen by county clerks and election administrators, who help to train and monitor the volunteer election judges that staff the polls. Ballots are typically processed and counted at central county locations, with the results reported to the Montana secretary of state’s office via a statewide software system called ElectMT.

Once polls close, the secretary of state’s office provides results through its website. The state-level office also provides guidance to local election administrators to ensure compliance with state election laws. Additionally, enforcing compliance with some laws governing political campaigns, particularly those involving campaign finance, falls to a separate office known as the Commissioner of Political Practices.

Do I need to be registered in order to vote?

Yes. If you’re unsure about your registration status, you can check it through the Montana secretary of state's My Voter Page. You can register to vote by stopping by your county election office any time during regular business hours to pick up an application. After you’ve filled it out, you’ll need to get it back to your county election office by mail or in person (the latter option is strongly recommended close to Election Day to ensure your application is received in time). If you do present your application in person, you’ll have to provide a photo ID or the last four digits of your Social Security number. If you happen to be applying for a Montana driver’s license or identification card before the election, you can register to vote at the same time.

Can I register to vote on Election Day?

Yes. The state Legislature has sought to enact an earlier registration deadline, but under a March 2024 ruling by the Montana Supreme Court, same-day voter registration remains legal in Montana. Residents can register to vote or update their voter registration at their county’s election office prior to 8 p.m. on Election Day.

Does Montana have voter ID requirements?

Yes, you will be required to present identification when voting at the polls. However, under the Montana Supreme Court’s March ruling, changes made to those requirements by the 2021 Legislature remain blocked. The current forms of identification voters can use at the polls are a current Montana driver’s license, state-issued photo ID, tribal or military photo ID, a U.S. passport or a student ID. If you don’t have a photo ID, you can use a utility bill, a bank statement, a voter confirmation card or any other government document that shows your name and address.

Are there situations where I wouldn't be eligible to vote?

According to state law, you can't vote if you'll be under age 18 on Election Day, are not a U.S. citizen, or have lived in Montana less than 30 days. Convicted felons who are currently incarcerated in a penal facility and people whom judges have ruled to be of unsound mind are also ineligible to vote. Otherwise, you're good to go.

Can I vote online?

No, that’s not an option in Montana.

Can I vote by mail?

Yes, you can sign up as an absentee voter by checking a box on your voter registration form. If you’re already registered to vote, you can fill out a separate form and submit it to your county election office.

If you’re registered as an absentee voter, a ballot should be mailed to you a few weeks in advance of each election day. You can make sure your address is current via the My Voter page. County election officials are slated to mail ballots to voters for the June 2024 primary election May 10.

You can return ballots by mail, or drop them off in person at your county’s election office. Either way, the election office must receive your ballot by 8 p.m. on Election Day in order to count it.

How do I vote in person?

If you plan to vote at the polls, just be sure you know where your polling location is and head there between 7 a.m. and 8 p.m. on Election Day. You'll need to provide a photo ID and sign the precinct register, at which point you’ll get your ballot and be directed to a voting booth. If you have any technical questions or run into any problems, the election judges at your polling place should be able to help you.

I have a friend or family member who isn't able to drop off his or her mail-in ballot. Can I do it for them?

Yes, you can. The Montana Legislature did make some changes to ballot collection laws in 2021 related to paid ballot collection, those changes have also been blocked by the Montana Supreme Court.

Who should I vote for?

That’s your call, not ours. We hope the information we present on this guide is helpful as you make that decision for yourself, though.

About this project

This guide was produced by the Montana Free Press newsroom with production and web development by Eric Dietrich, editing by Brad Tyer and Nick Ehli and contributions from Arren Kimbel-Sannit, Mara Silvers, Alex Sakariassen, Amanda Eggert and Stephanie Farmer. Questionnaire responses for legislatiive candidates were collected with help from the Montana League of Women Voters, through the league's Vote 411 program. Contact Eric Dietrich with questions, corrections or suggestions at edietrich@montanafreepress.org.

Montana Free Press is a nonpartisan 501(c)(3) nonprofit, reader-supported news organization serving Montana. MTFP's donor base includes supporters from across Montana's political spectrum, including some Montanans who are candidates in this year's election. MTFP's major donors are listed here and a current list of other supporters is available here. MTFP's news judgments are made entirely independently from donor involvement.

This material is available for republication by other media outlets under Montana Free Press' standard distribution terms.