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Libertarians preparing to name replacement candidate for U.S. Senate race

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Posted at 10:48 AM, Jul 03, 2020
and last updated 2020-07-03 20:25:55-04

HELENA — The Montana Libertarian Party is preparing to nominate a candidate to run for the U.S. Senate this year, to replace Susan Good Geise, who withdrew in May.

Party Chairman Sid Daoud of Kalispell told MTN News Thursday that the party’s central committee will meet soon to select a candidate for the general election ballot.

Geise, a Lewis & Clark County commissioner from Augusta, withdrew from the Senate race in May, saying her commissioner duties during the Covid-19 pandemic would not allow her enough time to campaign.

Three candidates already are running in the high-profile race: U.S. Sen. Steve Daines, R-Mont., Democratic Gov. Steve Bullock and Green Party candidate Wendie Fredrickson.

Libertarians and other third-party candidates, while not threats to win in Montana statewide races, sometimes can be a factor in the final outcome, by attracting votes that might have gone to another candidate in a close race.

Daoud said the Libertarian Party couldn’t name a replacement candidate until after the primary election results had been certified by the state, and that he received notice of the certification this week.

Party bylaws require him to give the party central committee 10 days notice of the meeting to select a replacement candidate, he said.

“We will be putting out an announcement to them and to receive nominations before the central committee meets,” Daoud said.

He also said that “none of the above” is always a choice on any Libertarian vote to nominate candidates, but that he doubts the party will go that route.