What ‘nonpartisan’ means to us

What ‘nonpartisan’ means to us

The MT Lowdown is a weekly digest that showcases a more personal side of Montana Free Press’ high-quality reporting while keeping you up to speed on the biggest news impacting Montanans. Want to see the MT Lowdown in your inbox every Friday? Sign up here . As journalists who cover state government, it’s our job to understand and explain how the levers of power are pushed and pulled, and by whom. As the sign above reporter Eric Dietrich’s desk reads : “ We’re here to explain Montana to Montanans.” I might amend that to add: “…and to anyone who cares about this state and what happens here.” To do that job, we rely on the state’s constitutional guarantee of transparency in government. We ask tough questions of those who hold offices in the public trust. We regularly request documents and other public information from government agencies and elected officials. We pore over data. We travel — sometimes very long distances — to witness newsworthy events or to interview expert sources. We attend lengthy and often boring public meetings, sometimes for days on end. We do these things so we can effectively communicate the details and nuances of complex issues and events to readers, so they can be better informed, too. We do this job regardless of which political party happens to be in power. When we describe our coverage as nonpartisan, that’s what we mean. We’re beholden to no party. We report on the exercise of power no matter […]

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