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Eye On Boise

Sat., June 14, 2014, 3:24 p.m.

Idaho GOP in disarray, convention adjourns without any new chairman or platform

Incredibly, Idaho's state Republican Party convention has just adjourned without taking any action on a platform, a new chairman, or anything else, after two and a half days of meetings, tense debates over rules, and divided but successful votes to disqualify a fifth of the delegates present based on disputes between the libertarian/tea party wing of the and the establishment wing. Sen. Bob Nonini, R-Coeur d'Alene, made the motion to adjourn. Convention Chairman Raul Labrador called for adjournment, which was challenged, but the challenge was voted down. So now the convention is over.

Labrador called for an immediate GOP Central Committee meeting; the central committee is gathering now. Far from uniting the party, the gathering in Moscow has become the site of the party's implosion into total dysfunction - though it's the party that holds every statewide office in Idaho, every seat in the congressional delegation and more than 80 percent of the seats in the state Legislature. It also proved not to be the finest hour for Labrador, who many looked to as the healer for the fractured party just a day after he announced that he's running for Majority Leader of the U.S. House; instead, he ended the convention facing jeers and walkouts from his own party members. 

Labrador announced that officers and platform planks all will remain as they are now - meaning the Idaho GOP platform will continue to call for doing away with direct election of U.S. senators, the one big plank the platform committee had voted yesterday to dump.

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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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