Preview Mode Links will not work in preview mode

Montana Lowdown

Montana Free Press founder and editor John S. Adams interviews newsmakers on the hottest topics and issues in American's Last Best Place. 

Jun 11, 2019

Deputy Attorney General Jon Benion is no stranger to Montana politics. 

He worked on Republican U.S. Rep. Denny Rehberg's campaigns in 2000 and 2002, and in 2004 he published a "Big Sky Politics," a detailed book on post-war politics in Montana. After earning his law degree from the University of Montana, Bennion clerked for a district court judge in Billings, and then in 2006 he went to work in Helena as the top lobbyist for the Montana Chamber of Commerce. 

For the past six-and-a-half years Bennion has served as Attorney General Tim Fox's chief deputy, an experience he says makes him uniquely qualified to take over when Fox is termed out in 2020.

“We need a leader that’s going to continue to focus on critical public safety issues and provide leadership and the right priorities in that realm," Bennion said. "We need a leader that’s going to continue to fight government overreach to that extent that either Washington, D.C., or another state, is trying to impact Montana from outside its borders. We also need somebody that’s going to protect our most vulnerable citizens.

Bennion is up against former House Speaker and current Roosevelt County Attorney Austin Knudsen for the Republican nomination for attorney general, and Bennion had some strong words for his primary opponent. 

“I think he’s bored with being County Attorney after four months on the job, and that’s unfortunate," Bennion said. “He really wanted to be attorney general. It shouldn’t be some kind of stepping stone to get to somewhere else. And I think that’s what sets me apart from my opponent.”

On this week’s podcast, Jon Bennion discusses how his career at the nexus of law and politics, and his role as a husband and father, would serve him well as Montana’s next Attorney General.

From healthcare to Federal overreach, from climate change to the economics of coal, and more, Bennion shares his views on some of the most important issues voters will be grappling with in 2020.