Election Day, November 3rd, is just around the corner. MTN News wraps up local candidate coverage with the contest for House District 22, which features Lola Sheldon-Galloway and Jasmine Taylor.
Incumbent Republican Lola Sheldon-Galloway is running for her third term representing the area. She previously represented the district in 2017 and 2019. Sheldon-Galloway and her husband are business owners in the Great Falls area.
With November comes Election Day, but also a key U.S. Supreme Court hearing challenging the Affordable Care Act. We asked Sheldon-Galloway and her opponent where they stood on the ACA overall and which parts needed to be addressed. The Republican said she's seen firsthand the rise in health insurance premiums for families including hers.
She told MTN News she believes in competition and free enterprise, which results in better health care and lower costs. "Also, nowhere in the Constitution does it say the government should provide care for those that can't care for themselves- I can't find it,” she said. Yet the scriptures are very explicit in saying feed the poor, clothe the naked, take care of the widow or orphans. But then we'd be mixing church and state. So my philosophy is let the churches do what they were designed to do and let the role of the government stay focused on why we have a government."
Democrat Jasmine Taylor is running to represent House District 22. She ran for Great Falls city commission in 2019 and works in the Department of Health and Human services. Taylor is also President of Great Falls LGBTQ Center.
When it came to the future of healthcare in Montana, she believes the Affordable Care Act isn't perfect, but has helped keep residents healthy. Taylor was a caseworker for the Office of Public Assistance and determined medicaid eligibility for Montanans. The Democrat said the ACA has provided health care options to adults that wouldn't have coverage otherwise.
She told MTN News healthy Montana families include care for every person. "I don't think that healthcare should be for-profit, I think healthcare is a human right and I think that the ACA is a step in the right direction. Obviously there is room for improvement with such a massive venture, we have to learn as we go and we have to be prepared to adapt,” she said. “And I think by and large the Affordable Care Act has been vital for Montana; it provided over 90,000 Montanans with healthcare that never had it before."
MTN News asked Taylor and Sheldon-Galloway a number of questions; their answers can be found below.
Interviews with incumbent House District 19 Representative Wendy McKamey and HD 23 Candidate Republican Scot Kerns will also be available online. We have not heard back from their opponents.