Corey Stapleton Should Apologize and Montana GOP Needs to Condemn SOS Newsletter that Calls for Tribal Assimilation

Justin AilportRepublicans

For Immediate Release

Friday, Jan. 3, 2020

Contact: Nick Lockridge; 406.546.8211, [email protected]


Corey Stapleton Should Apologize and Montana GOP Needs to Condemn SOS Newsletter that Calls for Tribal Assimilation

HELENA – The scandal-plagued tenure of Montana’s Republican Secretary of State Corey Stapleton reached new lows this week when Stapleton argued for assimilation of our state’s tribes and specifically mentioned the “lost” tribe of the Little Shell Chippewa, which just last month gained Federal recognition. Stapleton has yet to apologize and even more shamefully ZERO fellow Republicans have condemned his rambling, racist screed, sent with taxpayer resources, in the days that followed. 

Most responses to Stapleton’s newsletter rant were swift and severe in their opposition, led primarily by the members of the Little Shell tribe. However, nothing has been said by any other Republican running for statewide office. 

“Corey Stapleton has abused his office and offended and embarrassed Montanans at every turn and opportunity,” said State Party Chair Robyn Driscoll. “It’s time someone from his own party called him out. He needs to apologize for his personal opinion, which was sent with taxpayer resources, as it harms the relationships between our state agencies and sovereign nations like our Montana tribes.”

That no one in Stapleton’s five-way primary for Montana’s lone U.S. House seat — nor any Republican running for public office in 2020 — is condemning Stapleton’s letter, is very telling. It means Republicans uniformly believe the same way as their misguided Secretary of State. Montanans, especially those in Indian Country, deserve to know if Matt Rosendale, Deb Lamm, Joe Dooling, Tim Johnson or any candidate for higher office feels similarly. 

Stapleton has disgraced the Secretary of State’s office ever since taking over. He used state resources to send out his Gubernatorial announcement. He was found to be using state vehicles for personal use. He was found to be giving state contracts — to correct voter guide mistakes he oversaw — to personal relationships, and he illegally attempted to block a veto by Gov. Steve Bullock, which was overturned by a District Court judge, but not before costing the taxpayers’ money to unsuccessfully fight it out.

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