Lewis and Clark County’s general election matchup for an open seat on the county commission is now set.
Mike Fasbender, a real estate investor, and Tom Rolfe, who works in auto sales, were the top two candidates in last night’s nonpartisan primary. They will now compete in November for the position representing District 2, which includes parts of central Helena and the Helena Valley, along with the Augusta area.
Fasbender received the most votes, with 32%. Rolfe got 28% of the vote. They finished ahead of the other two candidates – Brady Christensen with 23% and Tyrel Suzor-Hoy with 17%.
Fasbender said he’s grateful for the support he received, especially after an unusual campaign season impacted by COVID-19. He said he looks forward to meeting with voters as the general election goes on.
“I’m hoping we get into the next phase of opening up our state and get things back to normal, and then we can get back to the meetings and going door to door and talking to people and finding out what issues are important to them with the county, and listen to them and try to make a good plan going forward,” he said.
Fasbender says, in the general election campaign, he will focus on his continued opposition to the push for county-initiated zoning and on issues like drug abuse and mental health – particularly after the recent loss of a family member who died by suicide.
Rolfe said he was pleased to see there was strong turnout, and he thanked voters and his fellow candidates for what he called a “straightforward, above-the-board campaign.” He said he wants to continue having a conversation about the issues facing the county.
“As I’ve talked a little bit with folks, there’s some things that they seem to really have a lot of interest in,” he said. “They seem to want some maturity, some straightforwardness, honest dialogue, they like experience, and they like responsible leadership, and I think that’s something that I can offer.”
Rolfe said he plans to focus his general election message on issues like property rights, limiting property taxes and providing additional support for first responders in Lewis and Clark County.
This is the first time Lewis and Clark County held a nonpartisan election for county commission, after voters approved switching to nonpartisan county elections last year. The winner of the general election will succeed incumbent Commissioner Susan Good Geise, who did not run for another term.