As the primary election for our lone Congressional seat draws nearer, I’d like to encourage Montana Democrats to vote for Grant Kier. Here’s why:
Grant’s story is the story progressives have touted for more than a century as the American dream. Raised by a single mother of limited means, Grant took advantage of the public benefit that has been the path of countless Americans to upward mobility: public education. He understands on a personal level how important preserving that benefit is to the opportunities available for future generations.
Grant took a liking to the sciences, and he was good at them. He majored in geology in college. Fascinated by the interplay of our planet’s materials, structures and organisms and the processes that change them, Grant went on to earn a master’s degree in the discipline. Whoever wins the Democratic primary will likely face an incumbent whose scientific understanding is, at best, underwhelming. More importantly, as the effects of climate change intensify in Montana and throughout the globe, having the mind and voice of a disciplined earth scientist in Congress will be vitally important.
After college, Grant became a well-site geologist, working with roughnecks and mudloggers on natural gas rigs. He has seen first-hand how important good jobs are to families and economies and how important it is to provide appropriate and equitable benefits for employees in dangerous lines of work. Those, too, are foundational progressive themes.
Grant has spent the last 14 years helping Montanans from diverse backgrounds strike an agreeable balance between wild and working lands in the public and private sectors. He has shown the ability to work with conservatives and progressives with agricultural, outdoor and numerous other interests to find, quite literally, common ground. We Democrats always rally for a fight, and Lord knows there’s plenty to be angry about in 2018. But to win back this seat, we need a candidate who will reach beyond the anger, reach through the polarization, and reach people who may not be Democrats but understand the importance of common ground and long for a Congress that does something besides fight.
I believe that candidate is Grant Kier. I urge you to take advantage of one of the many opportunities in the next few months to see him in action and listen to him speak. I urge you to get to know the down-to-earth, insightful, kind person that I know. And then I urge you to help him win back this seat in the House of Representatives. It’s way past time.
Mary Sheehy Moe has held office as a local government study commissioner, a school board trustee, and a state senator. She is now a city commissioner in Great Falls.