It’s not easy finding many Republican women in Butte.
“Well, we are small, but we are tough,” said Helen Kellicut, who is president of Butte-Silver Bow Republican Women.
This small, but tough, group invited Republican Congressional candidate Greg Gianforte to the Mining City Tuesday to hear what he what he will do if elected.
“People want a strong voice back in Washington D.C., they want us to drain the swamp, nobody ever envisioned career politicians. I’m a business guy and I’m looking forward to taking that business experience back to D.C.,” Gianforte said during the meeting at Wetona's Coffee House & Deli in Butte.
Kellicut says it’s all about business and women are empowering themselves.
“Women are starting up more small businesses than men nationally, and also in Montana, and tax breaks are what they need most to succeed,” she said.
The Mining City has always been a bedrock for the Democratic Party and it’s unlikely that Gianforte will win this region, but the Republican women’s group believe that this conservative Republican can speak the values of Butte’s working class.
“They’re starting to feel maybe their party has left them a little bit and right now we’re in a bit of an economic stressful period and we need somebody that understands that and knows how to manage our money,” Kellicut said.
The candidate said he’s listening to voters in Butte and around the state.
“When I’m out, I think you learn a lot more when you listen than when you talk, so I’m always interested in hearing what’s on people’s minds so I can be their voice back in Montana,” Gianforte said.
His Democratic challenger, Rob Quist, will also have to do a lot of listening in parts of the state that are Republican strongholds.