Continuing the statewide trend of more-moderate Republicans winning in yesterday's GOP primary, Sen. Joyce Broadsword, R-Sagle, defeated Bonner County Commission Chairman Cornel Rasor, and Broadsword will become a Bonner County commissioner, as no Democrats filed for the seat. Rasor is the current chairman of the Bonner County Republican Central Committee. Broadsword, a log home company owner, is a fourth-term state senator.
Rasor is a tea party backer and property rights activist who declared on his re-election website, “Zoning and owning are incompatible.” As commission chairman, he hired local tea party leader Pam Stout to coordinate a controversial county “Property Rights Council.” As central committee chairman, he sent a letter to Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer in 2010 seeking Arizona license plates to decorate the GOP central committee's county fair booth, after members objected to the fair's “fiesta” theme, saying decorating to the theme might be mistaken for a weakening of their resolve that English should be the primary U.S. language, or their support for cracking down on illegal immigration.
Broadsword got 2,857 votes, 51 percent, to Rasor's 2,744 votes, 49 percent.
Betsy Z. Russell covers Idaho news from The Spokesman-Review's bureau in Boise.
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