Sen. Max Baucus Engaged to Former Staffer

By Beacon Staff

HELENA – U.S. Sen. Max Baucus said Monday he plans to marry his girlfriend and former state director over the summer.

Baucus says he and Melodee Hanes were engaged over Christmas in Helena. The 69-year-old veteran Democrat says he and Hanes are looking forward to getting married at home in Montana this summer.

Baucus separated from his second wife, Wanda, in 2008 and they divorced in early 2009 after 25 years of marriage.

The senator recommended Hanes for Montana’s U.S. attorney post in 2009, a move that later came under scrutiny considering their relationship. By then, Hanes had withdrawn her name from consideration for that post and instead and taken a job at the Justice Department in Washington D.C.

Hanes was a former state prosecutor before joining Baucus’ staff.