Monforton v. MotlAnnotate this Case
The Supreme Court affirmed the order of the district court denying Matthew Monforton's petition for judicial review of a final agency decision by the office of the Commissioner of Political Practices (COPP) dismissing an ethics complaint that Monforton had lodged against Jonathan Motl based on statements that Motl had made during a radio interview, holding that Motl's statements did not violate Mont. Code Ann. 2-2-136(4) of the Montana Code of Ethics.
In his complaint, Monforton alleged that Motl's statements during a radio interview constituted improper election advocacy in violation of section 2-2-121(3)(a), an ethics rule that prohibits public officers and employees from using "public time, facilities, [and] equipment" to "solicit support for or opposition to the...election of a person to public office." The deputy COPP dismissed the ethics complaint. The district court upheld the dismissal. The Supreme Court affirmed, holding that the district court's decision to uphold the dismissal of Monforton's ethics complaint on the basis that Motl's statements did not constitute unlawful opposition to the election at issue under section 2-2-121(3)(a).