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Carlson: Otter Would Kick Raul’s Butt

Columnist Chris Carlson's analysis of the game of chicken being played by Gov. Butch Otter and Congressman Raul Labrador re: 2014 gubernatorial race:

There is a huge bluff game being played and at this point it appears Governor Otter has bluffed Congressman Labrador into thinking he really is running for a third term. Furthermore, the governor appears to have convinced Labrador that in a head-to-head primary he would kick Labrador’s rear. To that end there are rumors Governor Otter is quietly preparing a huge north Idaho fund-raiser that will feature – no, not Tea Party darling and the new Senator from Texas, Ted Cruz – but rather the charismatic governor from New Jersey, Chris Christie. Governor Christie is clearly no favorite of the Tea Party so this has about it an “in your face” message to Labrador. Neither does holding a fund-raiser remove all doubt about the governor’s intentions. He does in fact have a hold-over campaign debt (a loan from himself to his campaign) and the proceeds all could go to paying off the debt to himself. My guess is that if Governor Otter runs, he would crush the overly ambitious congressman. Full column here.

Question: Who would win a GOPrimary race for guv between Otter and Labrador?

Gun rights, gun control advocates want your signature

OLYMPIA – Whether you are for or against stricter background checks on gun sales, you'll have a chance in the coming months to support your position by signing an initiative to next year's Legislature.

 

If both Initiative 591 and Initiative 594 get the required signatures, they'll likely both be on the 2014 ballot if the Legislature follows its recent pattern of punting such proposals to voters rather than adopting them. (The full text of the initiatives can be found by clicking on the documents below.)

 

I-591, a one-page proposal that bans government confiscation of guns and any background check that isn't part of a national system, started its signature-gathering campaign about two weeks ago at one of the state’s biggest gun shows, the Washington Arms Collectors’ Show in Puyallup.

 

“We knew what the other side was going to do. We filed before they did,” said Alan Gottlieb, campaign manager for Protect Our Gun Rights.

 

I-594, an 18-page proposal that lays out a process to apply the current federal system of background checks required by dealers to private sales in Washington, with some exceptions for family transfer and antique sales, got its final ballot language approved last week and will start signups this week.

 

“It looks like we’ll be out there together,” Zach Silk, campaign manager for the Washington Alliance for Gun Responsibility, which is sponsoring I-594…

 

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Documents:

2014 Elections: Blockbuster Or Bore?

Thirteen months out from the 2014 Idaho primaries, and a little more than 18 months away from the general election, what can we expect? Perhaps a snoozer? Randy Stapilus — a longtime Northwest political observer and former Idaho newspaper editor — advances that theory in a weekend column making the rounds. By already formally announcing his bid for a second term, Sen. Jim Risch probably “cleared the field of serious opposition,” says Stapilus. And incumbent Gov. Butch Otter may well be doing the same by signaling his plans to seek a third term. Writes Stapilus: “The closest thing to a wild card among major offices seems to be superintendent of public instruction, mainly because incumbent Tom Luna endured a big crashing ballot issue defeat last year on school overhaul, the centerpiece of his two terms in office”/Kevin Richert, The EDge. More here.

Question: Is Idaho Superintendent of Schools Tom Luna vulnerable if he seeks re-election in 2014?

McLaughlin considering move to Spokane Valley

Spokane’s most senior elected official is considering a move to the east.

City Councilwoman Nancy McLaughlin said last week that she may move into Spokane Valley’s 4th Legislative District to run for the House seat held by state Rep. Larry Crouse – if he decides to retire.

McLaughlin, a Republican, can’t run for a third term on the City Council because of term limits.

Crouse, 68, said he likely will decide if he’ll run again early next year. He said he’s had a rough legislative session this year because of his health, but that he doesn’t suffer from any life-threatening illness. Crouse had surgery early this year because of a blocked artery in his leg and later suffered from food poisoning. But he said he’s getting back to normal.

“It has a lot to do with my health,” Crouse said. “If I feel good and feel capable of doing a good job, it’s a possibility that I will run again.”

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Popkey: Don’t Fall For Butch 3rd Term

Dan Popkey of the Idaho Statesman gives 3 reasons why Gov. Butch Otter announced Wednesday that he's seeking re-election in 2014 — and why you should take that announcement with a grain of salt: 1. Otter's keen to avoid an prolonged lame-duckhood. Ever since he took office, his fellow Republicans in the Legislature have had the upper hand. 2. Otter's broke. His last campaign report, for the six months ending June 30, showed $206,000 in debt and $10,444 in cash. And 3. Otter's feeling blue about recent editorials that say he's "mailing it in" and leaving the heavy lifting to Lt. Gov. Brad Little, who insiders have long perceived as Otter's hand-picked successor. Read hold Popkey column here.

Question: Didn't Otter once support term limits?