Saturday, March 8, 2008

Duane Grimes for State Auditor

Montana Headlines didn't have the chance to comment on it the day that it was announced, but Duane Grimes has officially entered the State Auditor race.

Grimes mounted a strong challenge to incumbent Auditor John Morrison 4 years ago, and we can expect that he will put his experience in running that race to good use this year, when the Auditor's position is open due to term limits.

The State Auditor is sort of a misnamed position -- one would think, based on the name, that it had something to do with auditing the state government's books. But in reality, Montana's State Auditor is mostly what in other states is called an insurance commissioner.

As well as overseeing the insurance industry in Montana, the Auditor's office also regulates the securities and investments industry in our state. And the State Auditor is one of 5 members of the state land board.

Grimes knows what it means to run his own business, and is an experienced legislator. He has a reputation for honesty, and in spite of the fact that there are doubtless many things to criticize about the management of the Auditor's office under John Morrison's tenure, he has taken a positive and forward-looking approach to his campaign.

Grimes is a more qualified candidate, based on his solid legislative experience, his experience as a businessman, and the way that he has applied his native intelligence and humility toward studying how the Auditor's office works and how it affects the industries it regulates. As he has traveled the state, addressing Republican gatherings and meeting Montanans, he has left a lot of people impressed with just how ready he is to take on the job.

We look forward to following this campaign, in which we hope that Montanans have a chance to learn what the State Auditor does, and why it is important who holds that position.

Montana Headlines is pleased to add Grimes as the second candidate for whom we have added an icon and links.

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