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In 1975, a fresh-faced young man ran from one end of the state to the other, literally, for one of the two seats representing the state of Montana in the United States Congress. This young man's roots ran generationally deep in Montana, and through hard work and paying attention to his constituents, he has become, in the tradition of Mike Mansfield, one of the most powerful senators in the United States Senate.

Fast-forward 35 years to 2010, and another fresh-faced young man is seeking the lone seat representing the whole state of Montana. It is a huge job.

Tyler Gernant is the face of Montana. His roots also run deep, as a fourth-generation Montanan. His grandparents homesteaded near Whitehall, and his parents are educators. He does not come from great wealth, but has a work ethic that started at the age of 15. He is young, idealistic, and full of energy and drive. He has the advantage of being a political newcomer who doesn't have 30 years of political favors to repay. He will represent Montanans.

Gernant represents the younger generation of Montanans who understand that our past dependence on foreign oil must be replaced by new energy solutions - wind, solar and biofuel energy - and that the potential is already there to create sustainable Montana jobs, and add millions to our economy.

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Gernant represents a clear alternative to our current representative, who has helped wrack up a $12 trillion national deficit and put two wars on the national credit cards. Gernant will leave more behind after serving his terms than his name on three federal buildings.

It is not easy to mount a candidacy from nothing. He is a hard, hard worker and that is what we need. Please vote for Tyler Gernant for Congress.

Susie Reber Orr, Missoula

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