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Former state GOP chair becomes fifth Republican in 2020 U.S. House race

Debra Lamm, Livingston attorney, says she's a bulwark against `socialism'
Posted: 1:03 PM, Sep 09, 2019
Updated: 2019-09-09 15:38:43-04
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HELENA — Former state Republican Party Chair Debra Lamm announced Monday that she’s running for Montana’s U.S. House seat in 2020, becoming the fifth Republican to vie for the open seat.

Lamm said the upcoming election is a battle over a future “defined by socialism or American exceptionalism,” and that as a member of Congress she would “stand with President Trump to protect this country and our Montana way of life.”

Lamm, who just completed a two-year stint as chair of the state Republican Party, is an attorney from Livingston. She was elected as a state representative in 2014, but lost the seat in 2016 to Democrat Laurie Bishop.

Montana’s sole U.S. House seat is open next year because incumbent Republican Rep. Greg Gianforte is running for governor.

Four other Republicans already are in the race, including two statewide officeholders: State Auditor Matt Rosendale, Secretary of State Corey Stapleton, Helena farmer-rancher Joe Dooling and Corvallis Superintendent of Schools Tim Johnson.

Three Democrats also are competing for the seat, including former state Rep. Kathleen Williams of Bozeman, who lost the 2018 general election to Gianforte by five percentage points, 51 percent to 46 percent.

The other Democrats in the contest are rancher Matt Rains of Simms and state Rep. Tom Winter of Missoula.

A Republican has held the House seat since 1997.