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About this race

Longtime Republican state Rep. Bob Nonini is running for the Senate, but his actions in the primary – pouring thousands into the campaigns of unsuccessful challengers to several sitting GOP lawmakers, including three senators – could make him an unpopular arrival there.

“I’m getting back-door support from moderate Republicans,” said his Democratic challenger, Kristy Reed Johnson. “Mr. Nonini has left the center of the party.” Nonini acknowledges he’s got some “bridge-building to do.”

Idaho legislators are paid $16,116 per year.

State Senator, Idaho Legislative District 3

Candidate Votes Pct
Bob Nonini (R) 12,122 68.26%
Kristy Johnson (D) 5,636 31.74%

* Race percentages are calculated with data from the Secretary of State's Office, which omits write-in votes from its calculations when there are too few to affect the outcome. The Spokane County Auditor's Office may have slightly different percentages than are reflected here because its figures include any write-in votes.

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Lake Of Nonini Tactic: ‘Think It Stinks’ 11 

Asked what he thinks about House Education Chairman Bob Nonini's scholarship tax credit bill bypassing the House Rev & Tax Committee, instead coming through Education, House Tax Chairman Dennis Lake, R-Blackfoot, said, “I think it stinks.” Asked if the bill would have passed in Rev...

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‘Brokeback’ Xmas Gift Offends Nonini 34 

A bit more on an Idaho Legislature culture clash, which was reported Wednesday by the Statesman's Sean Cockerham in a profile of Boise Democratic Sen. Nicole LeFavour, who is retiring from the Senate to run for 2nd District Congress. Cockerham was unable to reach House...

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Nonini Says Why He Sat On Bully Bill 

House Education Chairman Bob Nonini, R-Coeur d'Alene, defended his decision not to hear the (anti-bullying) bill. “We had a hearing on that last year, and it was somewhat of a contentious hearing,” he said. “I talked to (Senate Education) Chairman (John) Goedde early in the...

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Nonini’s Bill Helps Private Schools 

Among the bills successfully amended in the House this afternoon: HB 670, Rep. Bob Nonini's bill to grant up to $10 million a year in tax credits to individuals or corporations for donations to “scholarship granting organizations” that would give scholarships for K-12 students to...

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Nonini Sitting On Anti-Bullying Bill 

Rep. Brian Cronin, D-Boise, tried a parliamentary maneuver in the House this morning to pull SB 1358, the Senate-passed anti-bullying bill, out of the House Education Committee, where Chairman Bob Nonini, R-Coeur d'Alene, hasn't held a hearing on it. Nonini argued against the move. “I...

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Nonini Disturbing The Peace Bill Dies 

The Senate has voted 12-22 against HB 524, House-passed legislation from Rep. Bob Nonini, R-Coeur d'Alene, to expand Idaho's disturbing the peace law to address a situation that's arisen between hostile neighbor his his district. Numerous senators said the bill, which would make it a...

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Eye on Boise: Cigarette tax hike quickly stubbed out 

BOISE – When a proposed $1.25-per- pack cigarette tax increase was rejected by a House committee last week – the panel refused to introduce the bill or allow a hearing – two North Idaho lawmakers were outspoken in their opposition to the bill. Rep. Dick Harwood, R-St. Maries, said, “The smokers, I want to thank them for this building we’re in,” noting that Idaho tapped cigarette tax proceeds to pay for the bonds to renovate the state Capitol. “It’s kind of ironic that they can’t smoke in it,” he said.

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Eye on Boise: Aging state equipment enters ‘duct tape’ stage

BOISE – Gov. Butch Otter’s state budget recommendation calls for zero funding for capital replacement items, but lawmakers are concerned that some equipment replacement needs are too critical to continue to overlook. “I worry about this infrastructure,” said Rep. Maxine Bell, R-Jerome, co-chairwoman of the Joint Finance-Appropriations Committee. “I feel responsible for letting everything fall apart.”

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Brannon Manager Wants Nonini Seat 

Home builder and Republican activist Jeff Tyler will file Monday for election to Idaho House of Representatives Seat A, a district containing Post Falls, Rathdrum and southeast Kootenai County. Tyler, in his first run for public office, will seek a two-year term to the seat...

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Bill Would Lift Charter School Cap 

HB 481, Rep. Bob Nonini's bill to lift both of Idaho's current caps on creation of new charter schools - the six per year total statewide, and the one new one per year per school district - is up for a hearing in Nonini's House...

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Treasurer Crane Backs Santorum 

At Tuesday night's rally in Boise, Crane introduced Santorum and sat behind the presidential candidate on stage at Capital High School. Crane is the first statewide official to endorse anyone other than Mitt Romney for the GOP nomination. Former state Sen. Ric Branch, R-Midvale, warmed...

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Nonini, Others Caution UI Law School 19 

Twenty Idaho legislators, including House Speaker Lawerence Denney and House Education Chairman Bob Nonini, have signed a letter asking University of Idaho Law School to jettison a perceived threat involving a diversity program next week. In the letter obtained by, the 20 Republicans have...

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EOB: Of Ogres & Tax Credits 

Rep. Bob Nonini, R-Coeur d'Alene, sponsored legislation in the House today to add Special Needs Recreation of Coeur d'Alene to the list of charities and youth rehab organizations to which donations are eligible for a tax credit. Nonini praised the group, which provides recreational opportunities...

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Nonini Is Last Capitol Cig Smoker 12 

Rep. Bob Nonini, R-Coeur d'Alene, walks toward the Idaho Capitol in Boise on Monday. After another Republican representative quit smoking last year, Nonini is the lone open smoker in the Idaho Legislature. (AP photo) Standing outside the Capitol on a brisk January afternoon, Rep. Bob...

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In this photo taken Monday, Jan. 30, 2012, Rep. Bob Nonini, R-Coeur d'Alene, walks toward the Idaho Capitol in Boise on Monday, Jan. 30, 2012. After another Republican representative quit smoking last year, Nonini is the lone open smoker in the Idaho Legislature, a dramatic change from a quarter century ago when lawmakers smoked in caucus meetings and even during hearings on the floor of the House. (AP Photo / John Miller)

The Legislature’s last cigarette smoker…

In a state Legislature that used to be filled with clouds of cigarette smoke, there's now only one state lawmaker who regularly steps outside for a smoke: Rep. Bob Nonini, R-Coeur d'Alene. There also are a scattering of cigar aficionados, a few discreet chewing-tobacco users...

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Nonini Eyes Hammond Senate Seat 19 

Shortly after Coeur d'Alene Sen. Jim Hammond announced his plans not to run for re-election on Thursday, Rep. Bob Nonini declared the same day that he will campaign for Hammond's seat instead. "I wanted to get it out there. I've been thinking about it and...

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Hammond says he won’t run for Senate re-election

BOISE – Sen. Jim Hammond won’t seek a fourth term in the Idaho state Senate and instead will apply for the upcoming opening for president at North Idaho College, along with looking at other options that will keep him closer to home and family. “I never intended to set a record here,” Hammond, R-Coeur d’Alene, said Thursday. “It’s an opportunity for someone else.”

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Hammond Won’t Run, Nonini Will 12 

Sen. Jim Hammond, R-Coeur d'Alene, has decided not to seek re-election to the Idaho Senate. “I've made that decision,” Hammond confirmed this afternoon. Meanwhile, Rep. Bob Nonini, R-Coeur d'Alene, has decided to seek Hammond's Senate seat. Hammond, a third-term senator, is the current chairman of...

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Betty Squires, of Moscow, tries her luck at the Coeur d’Alene Casino on Wednesday. The Coeur d’Alene Tribe has donated $16.8 million to schools and other educational causes since 1994, under its pledge to donate 5 percent of its net profits to education. (Kathy Plonka)

Tribe opens books for S-R 11 

Betty Squires, of Moscow, tries her luck at the Coeur d’Alene Casino on Wednesday, Kathy Plonka SR When the Coeur d’Alene Tribe first signed a gaming compact with the state of Idaho in 1992, tribal leaders insisted on donating 5 percent of net casino gaming...

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