Idaho gubernatorial election, 2014

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Idaho Gubernatorial Election

Primary Date
May 20, 2014

General Election Date:
November 4, 2014

Incumbent prior to election:
Butch Otter Republican Party
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The Idaho gubernatorial election will take place on November 4, 2014. Incumbent Butch Otter (R) is running for re-election, as the state has no gubernatorial term limits. Otter faces Democratic candidate A.J. Balukoff and four third-party candidates in the general election. The winner of the election will serve a four-year term in office.

Idaho is one of 21 states with a mixed primary system. Parties decide who may vote. The Democratic Party allows unaffiliated voters to vote in their primary. The Republican Party allows only voters registered with their party. Unaffiliated voters can choose to affiliate with a party on election day, but they will be bound to that party at the next election as well.[1]

The governor's office has been held by the Republican Party since 1995, including large margins of victory in the past three elections. Polling in mid-October showed the race between Otter and Balukoff tightening to a four-point margin, as third-party candidates accumulated support from 12 percent of respondents.

Candidates

General election

Republican Party Butch Otter - Incumbent[2]
Democratic Party A.J. Balukoff[3]
Libertarian Party John T. Bujak[4]
Independent Pro-Life[5]
Independent Jill Humble[4]
Constitution Party Steve Pankey[4]

Lost in the primary

Republican Party Walt Bayes[4]
Republican Party Harley D. Brown[4]
Republican Party Russell Fulcher[6][7]
Democratic Party Terry Kerr[4]

Results

Primary election

Republican primary

Governor of Idaho, Republican Primary, 2014
Candidate Vote % Votes
Green check mark transparent.pngButch Otter Incumbent 51.4% 79,786
Russell Fulcher 43.6% 67,702
Harley D. Brown 3.3% 5,084
Walt Bayes 1.8% 2,761
Total Votes 155,333
Election Results Via:Idaho Secretary of State. Vote totals above are unofficial and reflect 100% precincts reporting.

Democratic primary

Governor of Idaho, Democratic Primary, 2014
Candidate Vote % Votes
Green check mark transparent.pngA.J. Balukoff 65.3% 16,753
Terry Kerr 34.7% 8,890
Total Votes 25,643
Election Results Via:Idaho Secretary of State. Vote totals above are unofficial and reflect 100% precincts reporting.


Debates

May 14 Republican primary debate


Ninth Idaho GOP Gubernatorial Primary Debate - 5/14/14

On May 14, 2014, a televised debate between the Republican gubernatorial primary candidates - two-term incumbent Gov. Butch Otter, Idaho Senator Russ Fulcher, Walt Bayes and Harley Brown - was aired on Idaho Public Television.[8][9] The debate centered on fairly common conservative themes like wresting control of Idaho lands from the federal government, fighting both abortion and Obamacare and supporting blue-collar ways to fix the state's troubled economy. The predictability of issues raised in the debate was belied by a relentless stream of highly improbable responses by Bayes and Brown, whose deliberately politically incorrect proclamations on discrimination and abortion, among virtually every topic addressed, shifted the gravity of the event by several orders of magnitude. Bayes, an elderly ex-convict and staunch anti-abortionist with a beard full of bible snippets, and Brown, an engineer/biker with a colorful self-titled patois that necessitated a 30-second delay in the debate's broadcast, flustered the moderate and journalists with their unorthodox responses.[9] Bayes and Brown struck a sharp contrast with the more polished duo of Otter and Fulcher on the debate stage. The stage configuration gave the impression they were split into two teams rather than four candidates competing individually.[10]

The debate drew massive viewership and national media coverage for offering the public a rare glimpse into the sharp divides in Idaho politics. Although most of the attention focused on the unconventional candidates, it served as a platform for Otter and Fulcher to reach a wider audience with their campaign messages. For example, Otter used his time to remind voters about his successes in the governor's office over the last eight years, crediting himself with leading the state out of the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression, lowering taxes while balancing the budget and reducing the size of the state government. "I'm honored to have been through the refining fire with you, and I'm excited about continuing to face the challenges of today and tomorrow," Otter stated. Fulcher, meanwhile, was able to promote his plan to set up a free-market health care alternative and restore Idaho's financial and land sovereignty by better utilizing the state's natural resources and expanding related state-based industries. He also condemned Otter's leadership over the economy and his navigation of the state's implementation of Obamacare.[10]

Summing up the roster of debaters seeking the GOP gubernatorial nomination in the May 20 primary, Brown said: "Folks, you have a choice: A cowboy, a curmudgeon, a biker or a normal guy. Take your pick."[10]

Polls

Governor of Idaho - All candidates
Poll Butch Otter* A.J. BalukoffJohn T. BujakSteve PankeyJill HumblePro-LifeUndecidedMargin of ErrorSample Size
Public Policy Polling
October 9-12, 2014
39%35%4%2%3%3%14%+/-4.3522
Note: The polls above may not reflect all polls that have been conducted in this race. Those displayed are a random sampling chosen by Ballotpedia staff. If you would like to nominate another poll for inclusion in the table, send an email to editor@ballotpedia.org.
Governor of Idaho - Balukoff v. Otter
Poll Butch Otter* A.J. BalukoffOther/UndecidedMargin of ErrorSample Size
New York Times/CBS/YouGov
October 9-12, 2014
57%33%10%+/-5594
Note: The polls above may not reflect all polls that have been conducted in this race. Those displayed are a random sampling chosen by Ballotpedia staff. If you would like to nominate another poll for inclusion in the table, send an email to editor@ballotpedia.org.

Note: An asterisk (*) denotes incumbent status.


Campaign media

The Idaho gubernatorial race went from sleepy to competitive in early October, when the Republican Governors Association (RGA) invested in TV ads attacking Democratic candidate A.J. Balukoff.[11] Here is a sampling of ads run by the RGA in the Idaho gubernatorial election:


RGA ad: California (October 1, 2014)

RGA ad: Script (October 14, 2014)

Balukoff responded in October with an ad claiming that Gov. Otter received campaign cash from the Corrections Corporation of America (CCA) while delaying an investigation into falsified records by the prison operator:


A.J. Balukoff ad: Butch Otter and the CCA: One Scandal Too Many (October 17, 2014)

Past elections

2010

Idaho Governor, 2010
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Republican Green check mark transparent.pngC.L. "Butch" Otter Incumbent 59.1% 267,483
     Democratic Keith Allred 32.9% 148,680
     Independent Jana M. Kemp 5.9% 26,655
     Libertarian Ted Dunlap 1.3% 5,867
     Independent Pro-Life (Marvin Thomas Richardson) 0.9% 3,850
Total Votes 452,535
Election Results Via: Idaho Secretary of State

2006

Idaho Governor, 2006
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Republican Green check mark transparent.pngC.L. "Butch" Otter 52.7% 237,437
     Democratic Jerry M. Brady 44.1% 198,845
     Constitution Marvin Richardson 1.6% 7,309
     Libertarian Ted Dunlap 1.6% 7,241
Total Votes 450,832
Election Results Via: Idaho Secretary of State

2002

Idaho Governor, 2002
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Republican Green check mark transparent.pngDirk Kempthorne 56.3% 231,566
     Democratic Jerry M. Brady 41.7% 171,711
     Libertarian Daniel L.J. Adams 2% 8,187
     Independent Kevin Powers 0% 13
Total Votes 411,477
Election Results Via: Idaho Secretary of State

Key deadlines

Deadline Event
May 20, 2014 Primary election
November 4, 2014 General election
November 19, 2014 Last day for State Board of Canvassers to meet to canvass the general election
January 5, 2015 Inauguration day for state executive officials in general election

Recent news

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See also

External links

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References