MISSOULA, Mont. - Sen. Steve Daines (R-Montana) recently participated in a Q&A with NBC Montana to discuss his take on the tone President Trump’s recent address to Congress, how he thinks proposed infrastructure investments would impact Montana and what Daines thinks should happen after recent revelations that Attorney General Jeff Sessions had undisclosed talks with Russia during Trump’s campaign.
We submitted our questions via email. The following is a transcript of the video sent in reply by Daines’ office:
NBC Montana: After a congressional address from President Trump that many saw as conciliatory, do you sense any more willingness between Democrats and Republicans in Washington to work together?
Sen. Daines: Well I thought President Trump's speech Tuesday night was a home run. It was optimistic. It was a vision for the next ten years. It was about the renewal of the American spirit and the importance of growing American jobs. It was an honor to be there that night and to hear it directly from our president.
NBC Montana: Could you see the infrastructure investment President Trump highlighted providing a boost to Montana's economy?
Sen. Daines: Well infrastructure's critical to our state. The Keystone XL pipeline is 800 jobs in Montana. It's $80 million a year in property taxes for Montana. It allows us to keep our schools, our teachers, and our infrastructure -- roads, highways and so forth -- funded.
NBC Montana: Do you support President Trump's pledge to increase military spending? He has said it will include spending on veterans. What changes would you like to see the president make that would help Montana veterans?
Sen. Daines: I'm grateful we have a president who believes, like Ronald Reagan did, about peace through strength. The threats are as great as we've ever seen before in this nation. I'm grateful we have a president who will invest in our military, to ensure the men and woman who have to take the fight to the enemy, have what they need to win.
NBC Montana: Should Attorney General Jeff Sessions resign?
Sen. Daines: Well the first thing is, we need to get the facts. There's just a lot rumors swirling around. The bottom line, get the facts.
NBC Montana: Anything you are working on this week Montanans should know about?
Sen. Daines: It was great week for Montana when we saw our very own Ryan Zinke become the next Secretary of Interior. I was with Ryan and his wife, Lola, when Vice President Pence swore him in. Great honor for our great state. Additionally, I had over 17 groups of Montanans in my office. The VFW, county commissioners, the American Outdoors Association, the University of Montana, credit unions, our broadcasters. In fact, the Farm Bureau came and met with me and I was presented their "Friend of the Farm Bureau" award. So it's always so good when these Montanans come back to Washington D.C. and they get to hear every voice and every concern, and then they make that long journey back. It's important that I bring that voice to the floor of the United States Senate.