Battle for the Big Sky delves into one of the few competitive races of the 2012 election: the US Senate campaign in Montana. Author David C.W. Parker was granted exceptional access by both candidates over the 21 months preceding the election, allowing him to tell the story of the race in rare and fascinating detail, while also exploring the impact of Citizens United and so-called "dark money" on the campaign. The Montana setting offers readers a view into the rising political influence of the West, the importance of "place" in politics, and the impact of congressional styles and constituent relationships on campaigns and elections. Parker skillfully weaves political analysis into his narrative and places the race in the broader context of congressional elections and the research literature.
Chapter 1: What Happened in Montana Won’t Stay in Montana
Chapter 2: Montana: The Last, Best Place?
Chapter 3: Jon Tester’s Creating a Buzz
Chapter 4: Denny Rehberg: A Man in a Hurry
Chapter 5: Representational Style: How Congressman Rehberg and Senator Tester Govern
Chapter 6: Campaigning in a Citizens United World: The Early Days of the Race
Chapter 7: What Voters Know, How They Decide, and When Campaigns Matter
Chapter 8: The Message Matters: The Politics of Personality and Issues
Chapter 9: The End Game
Chapter 10: Lessons Learned