This note examines the ways in which Montana Association of Counties concerns Montana law, elections, and history. While it is now nearly futile to suggest any regulation of campaign speech based on the speaker's corporate identity, it is possible to limit the influence of outsiders on the political process and fundamental text of the state. Part II discusses the historical development of the statutory initiative and referendum regime that existed under the 1889 Constitution and tracks its transition to the constitutional amendment by popular initiative process that emerged as part of Montana's 1972 Constitution. Part III describes the factual background, holding, and dissent of Montana Association of Counties. Part IV provides analysis of the separate amendment rule as articulated by the Court. Part V explains how invalidating a constitutional initiative supported by a majority of the electorate serves to protect the citizens of Montana from the pervasive influence of outside interests, but in doing so also runs the risk of blocking future generations of Montanans from enacting meaningful reform to their own Constitution.
Ryan Douglas, From the Coils of the Anaconda, Restriction of Constitutional Amendment by Popular Initiative in Montana Association of Counties v. State, 80 Mont. L. Rev. 269 (2019).