This November, vote the team our children deserve

| October 27, 2020 7:00 AM

To the editor:

As two lifelong Montanans, we are grateful to have grown up in a state as beautiful, welcoming and close-knit as ours. Together, we feel a deep responsibility to be involved in our community, so that we can protect the parts of Montana that we love most for generations to come. Teresa serves as a school board trustee and works professionally in economic development. Casey is a former public school teacher and serves as the Minority Leader in the Montana House of Representatives.

But most importantly, we’re parents to three incredible young boys, Aiden, Liam, and Finn.

We’ve tried hard to teach our kids about the importance of voting, and to instill within them a love for our democracy. And like many of you, we’ve been having conversations around the dinner table with our boys about the upcoming election, and what it means for their future.

Like all elections, this election is a choice. A choice between a distinguished statesman and lifelong public servant, and a self-serving pathological liar with a criminal record. Our kids deserve better than Greg Gianforte, and yours do too.

We teach our kids to keep their hands to themselves. And when they do something wrong, we teach them to tell the truth and apologize, not lie and try to cover it up. Gianforte violently assaulted a journalist, just for doing his job. And when he got caught, he lied. To the police. Our kids deserve better.

We teach our boys to look out for another, and to always stand up for their friends and

neighbors. Gianforte refuses to follow basic COVID-19 precautions, despite rising case totals in Montana, endangering the health and safety of communities across our state. He even supports herd immunity, which could kill more than 10,000 Montanans, as a strategy for defeating the pandemic. Our kids deserve better.

We teach our children to respect all people, no matter who they are, where they come from, or how they look. Gianforte was the main opponent of a non-discrimination ordinance in Bozeman, and he supports a private school in Bozeman that doesn’t even accept applications from students with disabilities. Our kids deserve better.

We teach our sons to value our outdoor heritage and to be good stewards of the land that we are so lucky to share together. Gianforte sued public land managers to block stream access along the East Gallatin River, because he was sick of sharing a fishing hole near his property with his neighbors. Our kids deserve better.

And we teach our kids that science is real. Greg Gianforte disagrees. Our kids deserve better. Montana deserves better.

There used to be a time when kids could look up to our public officials as role models. We believe that should still be true.There used to be a time when a record like Gianforte’s would be disqualifying. We believe it still is.

So this November, we’re asking you to vote for Mike and Casey, two upstanding public servants who have dutifully worked for the people of Montana and delivered results, because our kids deserve a governor and lieutenant governor with a record of results, not a rap sheet.

We look forward to building a better future for our state, together. We hope you’ll join us.

Casey and Teresa Schreiner

Casey Schreiner is the current House Minority Leader and candidate for lieutenant governor. Teresa Schreiner is a Great Falls school board trustee.