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Eye On Boise

Wed., Dec. 5, 2012, 8:28 p.m.

Bedke ousts Denney as House Speaker

Three-term Idaho House Speaker Lawerence Denney, arguably the most powerful member of the Idaho Legislature, lost his leadership post tonight to rival Rep. Scott Bedke, R-Oakley, in a dramatic political upset. The ouster, which happened during closed-door legislative caucus elections, marked the first time in three decades that a top Idaho legislative leader has been deposed by his own party.

Bedke, a seventh-term state reprsentative and a rancher, didn't differ much with Denney on issues; both are conservative Republicans. But Denney's bare-knuckle style has increasingly grated on his large majority caucus in recent years, culminating in May's primary election, when he funneled party leadership PAC funds - donated by caucus members - into efforts to defeat several GOP incumbents. You can read my full story here at spokesman.com.




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Betsy Z. Russell
Betsy Z. Russell joined The Spokesman-Review in 1991. She currently is a reporter in the Boise Bureau covering Idaho state government and politics, and other news from Idaho's state capital.

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