Idaho GOP discusses requiring prospective candidates to get party leaders approval before running, Otter disapproves

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June 14, 2013


By Josh Altic

Boise, Idaho: Republican politicians in Idaho are discussing a new policy that would only allow candidates on the GOP primary ballot that had been previously approved by party leaders. This plan, as well as another policy change that would give penalties to Republican politicians who vote against "Republican ideals" are scheduled for discussion on Friday and Saturday during the Republican Party Central Committee's meeting held in Donnelly.[1]

The policy requiring vetted candidates was proposed by Region 4 Republican Chairman Rod Beck, reportedly as a response to the recently debated state-based insurance exchange, in which several Republicans, including Governor Butch Otter, supported the bill, despite party leader opposition. Concerning the intended effects of this policy, Beck said, "What I envision is, our local precinct committee people will become more important to legislators than the lobbyists at Blue Cross and Blue Shield, or other Boise-based lobbyists."[1]

Both Governor Otter and former Governor Phil Batt have joined the Republicans that oppose this proposal. Otter said that the proposed policy is intended to make the GOP less like the inclusive party of Ronald Reagan, and lead it in the direction of strict ideology.[2]

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