HELENA,MT (STL.News) After the Biden administration late yesterday announced it would reopen the border between the U.S. and Canada for vaccinated Canadians, Governor Greg Gianforte urged President Biden to allow for a complete reopening of the northern border for trade and travel.
“Though long, long overdue, reopening the northern border is welcome news to Montanans whose families, businesses, and communities have suffered for many months from the Biden administration’s continued closure of the U.S.-Canada border,” Gov. Gianforte said. “I’ll continue to urge the Biden administration to fully reopen the U.S.-Canada border to trade and travel to make our Montana communities whole.”
Gov. Gianforte has repeatedly called on President Biden to reopen the northern border, which has been closed since March 2020, after months of repeated delays.
- On July 21, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced it was extending its temporary restriction prohibiting non-essential cross-border travel from Canada through at least August 21.
- In response, Gov. Gianforte, the governors of Idaho and North Dakota, and the premiers of Alberta and Saskatchewan on July 23 urged Biden and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to work together to reach an agreement allowing for the immediate movement of citizens, goods, and tourists between the two nations. The leaders’ full letter may be found here.
- On July 30, the governor joined a bipartisan group of northern-border governors asking U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken and DHS Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas to develop and execute a plan to safely open the border. Read the full letter here.
- On August 16, alongside American and Canadian leaders at the Pacific NorthWest Economic Region summit, Gov. Gianforte addressed the continued border closure, saying, “Days after Canada announced it would reopen its border, the Biden administration announced it would extend the closure of the U.S. border. The president’s unnecessary delays in reopening the U.S. border come at the expense of hardworking Montanans, Americans, and Canadians. They must end.”
- On August 18, the governor visited Mark’s Tire and Alignment in Shelby to receive a firsthand update on how the continued closure of the U.S. northern border has negatively impacted businesses in Montana. Due to the border’s continued closure, Mark’s Tire and Alignment has seen a 20 percent drop in business.
- On August 20, DHS extended the closure of the U.S.-Canada border for another 30 days.
- On August 26, Gov. Gianforte traveled to Eureka to host a roundtable discussion on the impact of the extended closure of the U.S.-Canada border on families, businesses, and communities in Lincoln County. Business owners, public officials, and community members reported a severe loss of revenue in Eureka and provided heartbreaking stories of families being split across the border.
- On September 20, DHS again extended the closure of the U.S.-Canada border for 30 more days.
In response, Gov. Gianforte again urged President Joe Biden to fully reopen the northern border for trade and travel, citing the real-world impact of the continued border closure on hardworking Montana families.
- On September 29, Gov. Gianforte traveled to Scobey to meet with Montanans about the impact of the continued closure on their businesses and community.