Friday, January 5, 2007

Best wishes to Jon Tester

It is now official -- Senator Jon Tester has taken the oath of office and is Montana's junior U.S. Senator.

Montana Headlines wishes for him a successful term in office serving the best interests of Montana.

Many Republicans were embittered by the negative campaign tactics used against Conrad Burns, and even more angry about what was perceived to be the unjustly negative press that Burns received before and during the campaign. Still, everyone knows how this game is played, and under those rules Tester won, fair and square.

Regardless of hard feelings about the Burns loss, to hope that Tester falls flat on his face in Washington would be to be a rather poor citizen of the state of Montana.

The U.S. Senate was always intended to be the voice of the state government in Washington. Subsequent changes to a direct election of Senators has changed that tone, but Senators should still remember that their number one concern should be to protect the interests of their state's self-government.

Republicans and Democrats alike should hope that Tester does this for Montana with success -- and Republicans should begin their long-term strategy to defeat Jon Tester in 2012 after he completes that successful term.