- Associated Press - Friday, March 3, 2017

HELENA, Mont. (AP) - The Latest on Montana’s special election for U.S. House (all times local):

12:25 p.m.

A seventh Republican has added his name as a prospective candidate for Montana’s vacant U.S. House seat.

Montana Republican Party officials say Samuel Pascal Redfern of Missoula has paid his $1,740 filing fee to be considered when GOP delegates pick a candidate in a special convention Monday in Helena.

The party’s statement says Redfern is a military veteran who runs a non-profit organization.

The candidates are now Redfern, state Sen. Ed Buttrey, businessman Greg Gianforte, state Rep. Carl Glimm, former state Sen. Ken Miller, contractor Dean Rehbein and former state Sen. Ed Walker.

On Thursday, Drew Turiano of Helena dropped out of the race.

About 200 Republican delegates will decide the GOP candidate for the May 25 special election to replace former U.S. Rep. Ryan Zinke.

___

9:35 a.m.

Eight Democratic hopefuls are lobbying the 150 to 180 voting delegates who will decide Sunday who the party will back to replace former U.S. Rep. Ryan Zinke.

Musician Rob Quist has been traveling across the state to meet with delegates. Two other front runners - Amanda Curtis of Butte and Kelly McCarthy of Billings - are state lawmakers participating in the current legislative session, so they weren’t as free to travel before this week’s session break.

Zinke left office on Wednesday to become President Donald Trump’s Interior secretary, prompting Gov. Steve Bullock to call a May 25 special election

Montana Democratic Party chairwoman Nancy Keenan said there are no rules or restrictions on contact between the candidates and the voting delegates before Sunday’s nominating convention in Helena.

Republicans will choose their candidate on Monday.


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