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Eye On Boise

Lively debate between Otter, Balukoff includes clash on same-sex marriage, gay rights; new revelation from Otter about CCA

Republican Incumbent C.L.
Republican Incumbent C.L. "Butch" Otter, left, speaks with Democratic Challenger AJ Balukoff for a moment after the gubernatorial debate hosted by the City Club of Idaho Falls at the Idaho State University Bennion Student Union Building Thursday, Oct. 9, 2014. (AP/Post Register / Pat Sutphin)

Here’s a link to my full story at on today’s lively debate between GOP Gov. Butch Otter and his Democratic challenger, A.J. Balukoff, in which the two went head-to-head over same-sex marriage and gay rights; debated an array of education issues from preschool to higher education funding; and differed on everything from jobs and the economy to Medicaid expansion.

After Balukoff sharply criticized Otter for agreeing to a $1 million settlement with Corrections Corp. of America for overbilling and other problems with its now-canceled management of Idaho’s largest state prison - before a criminal investigation had been launched, ad noted that CCA was a big donor to Otter’s campaigns, Otter offered a new revelation: “I personally did not involve myself in the negotiations of the settlement with CCA because I had received money from CCA for my campaign,” he said. “So I recused myself and let the professionals make that decision. I did not.”

Then he added: “By the way, that final agreement, if (there is) anything that we find out in the FBI investigation, that agreement is set aside and then we can go after CCA.”

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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