In House District 21 Democrat Jaime Horn is running against Republican Ed Buttrey. Here is Horn’s response and profile.
Buttrey didn’t respond to our request.
Talk a little bit about your background, family, work, and hobbies/interests.
I’m a lifelong Great Falls resident who graduated from Great Falls Central Catholic High School in 2017, AKA the best school in the world (GO MUSTANGS!!!!). As station manager at Great Falls International Airport, my grandfather was an early influence in building the community into what it is today. My parents were and are both blue-collar, working class. I’m a second generation American on my father’s side, as he emigrated to the U.S from Mexico. If elected to the State House this November 3, I will be the first Latino lawmaker in Montana history which is an indescribable honor. I work as the owner and CEO of Carnaval Entertainment and its subsidiary the Young Progressive Foundation, as well as a fiction writer. Through the YPF, I run a podcast which airs on YouTube and Twitch from Monday-Friday. When I’m not working or running, I’m playing my Nintendo Switch or Xbox, walking in Gibson Park or hanging out with my animals.
Why are you running for the office?
I’ve considered myself a student of politics for a longtime. What ultimately pushed me to run this cycle was seeing just how grossly Great Falls and Black Eagle are ignored by lawmakers from both parties. Fanatical Republicans and corporate Democrats alike have abandoned our shared community, and left us forgotten.
Why are you running as a Democrat?
The Democratic Party, while far from perfect, to me has long represented the working class, racial minorities, and other marginalized groups. My family has been involved with the party for a long time, but though I’m proud to be running as a Democrat, make no mistake that at heart I am first a progressive, and an ideological libertarian.
What are a couple of issues in the state legislature that you could work on to help Great Falls and Cascade County grow and prosper?
To begin, I believe Montana’s sexual education system is irreparable in its current state. The current abstinence -based curriculum Montana employs has been proven to simply not work in study after study. Teen and unplanned pregnancy is a scourge seen particularly in Cascade County which is number one in teen birth rates across Montana. We also must focus on discouraging young adults (18-27) from rushing into marriage and parenthood; one of my best friends was nearly murdered by her abusive partner. In regards to wages, we have to raise our state wage to a living wage. We can do this by setting a goal of gradually raising the minimum wage to $15/hr while giving a tax break to small businesses. Cascade County struggles with poverty and business closures, but when we invest in our workers, they’ll invest back in us. Finally, I propose we grant expungement to all those who have committed non-violent misdemeanors and felonies, while releasing those currently incarcerated. Those arrested for such offenses will be sent to rehab instead of prison. Sherriff Slaughter just addressed the overcrowding we face here in Cascade County, and we can ease that issue by only locking away those who pose a danger to society.
What makes you the best candidate in the race?
Unlike my opponent, I’m actually addressing ways to help our community. Representative Buttrey was recently spotted next to a Nazi swastika. Instead of fighting for workers, Buttrey voted to allow employers to crack down on their employees for discussing wages. He has made it clear that his loyalties lie with the alt-right and big business. That subservience in HD21 ends the moment I’m elected.