Close to three hundred people are vying for a chance to sit in the Idaho Legislature next year. Tomorrow’s primaries will pit party members against each other for the chance to compete in the general election in November. Gary Moncrief is watching the races closely. The political science professor with Boise State says redistricting is the reason behind the large candidate turnout. “The Republicans have almost two hundred candidates on the primary ballot, the Democrats have almost one hundred which is the most that we’ve seen ever in the state of Idaho, certainly the most we’ve seen in the last 20, 25 years.”
Moncrief says there are usually more candidates when Legislative districts boundaries are re-drawn every ten years. That’s due in part to the new shape of many districts. “A lot of people now perceive that they have at least a chance as a challenger to an incumbent because the nature of the precincts in that district are different than they were before.”
In some districts, four Republicans will compete against each other. In others, including District 2 and 19, three Democrats will run in the primary. Moncrief says, for some races, tomorrow will be the deciding vote. That’s because a few of the primary winners won't face challengers from another party in the general election.