Tuesday’s elections revealed two political parties headed in different directions in Idaho.
For the GOP, the sweep of statewide races was a step in healing wounds opened during a contentious summer. But Democrats’ optimism gave way to the stark reality that they continue to struggle for competitiveness in one of the reddest states in the country.
Idaho Gov. C.L. "Butch" Otter has won a rare third term leading the state.
Otter, now 72, has been a fixture of Idaho politics since he was first elected to the Idaho House of Representatives in 1973. Otter has been a legislator, a congressman and one of the state's longest-serving lieutenant governors.
He was first elected governor of Idaho in 2006. This year, Otter faced a difficult race against his Democratic challenger, Boise businessman A.J. Balukoff.
Republican candidates running for statewide and legislative offices stopped at a public charter school, where they were greeted by the student body, while traveling on a campaign bus tour.
The Spokesman-Review reports that the Oct. 24 visit raises questions over whether the stop violated Idaho's education ethics code. The code forbids schools from promoting political candidates or political activities.
Pictures of the event show campaign signs posted in front of Gooding's North Valley Academy Public Charter School.
In their last meeting before Tuesday's election, three men running to be Idaho's governor wasted no time in taking shots at each other's policies and ideas. The debate, hosted by Idaho Public Television, featured incumbent Republican Gov. C.L. "Butch" Otter, Democrat A.J. Balukoff and Libertarian John Bujak.
It’s no secret that young voters are less likely to vote than older voters. The U.S. Census Bureau reports that in every presidential election since 1964, 18-to 24-year-olds voted at lower rates than all other age groups. In the last mid-term election, 21.3 percent of 18-to 24-year-olds voted. The number was almost three times higher for those 65 and over.
A favorite joke in Idaho -- at least among Republicans -- is that Idaho's Democrats could hold their convention in a phone booth.
Republicans have held the Idaho governor's office for 20 years and are easily the state’s ruling party. But this year, Republican governor Butch Otter doesn't face the easy ride back to office you might expect.
A.J. Balukoff has said he’s committed to doing whatever it takes to unseat incumbent Gov. Butch Otter.
And we now know that includes putting more than $3.2 million into the race.
The latest round of campaign finance reports came in Tuesday — a snapshot covering the period from Oct. 1 to Oct. 19. In that time, the businessman, accountant and Boise School Board trustee contributed $995,000 to his campaign, bringing his total contributions for the year past the $2.7 million mark. Since Oct. 19, Balukoff has put an additional $545,000 into the race.
Jerry Panko vacuums up leaves around the candidate signs in his north Boise front yard. Panko is a retired teacher, he refers to himself a liberal, he’s a big fan of unions and he’s a long-time Democrat.
With Election Day a week away we’re profiling some Idaho voters. We talked with Panko about the experience of being a hardcore Democrat in Idaho.
Panko says the affiliation came in handy nearly three decades ago when he first asked out the woman who would become his wife. She had some requirements for him.