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Eye On Boise

Idaho delegation not participating in Cruz petition, won’t take part in any walkouts

Idaho’s delegation to the Republican National Convention isn’t participating in a petition to get Ted Cruz nominated instead of Donald Trump, though Cruz won Idaho’s GOP presidential primary, and the state’s Cruz leadership team has promised that Idaho delegates will not participate in any anti-Donald Trump demonstrations or walkouts during the nominating process, the AP reports. Here’s the full report from AP reporter Kimberlee Kruesi:

Idaho delegation not participating in Cruz petition 
By KIMBERLEE KRUESI, Associated Press

BOISE, Idaho (AP) — Idaho delegates to the Republican National Convention say they have not been asked to sign a petition to have Texas Sen. Ted Cruz nominated as the GOP's presidential candidate.

Furthermore, Idaho GOP Chairman Steve Yates said in a telephone interview Tuesday that he's been promised by the state's Cruz leadership team that Idaho delegates will not participate in any anti-Donald Trump demonstrations or walkouts during the nominating process.

"I've been assured that our delegates are not interested in participating in such things," Yates said. "As far as I can tell, they are going to honor their duties. They will honor their obligations and support the next president."

Cruz won the state's primary in March, but Idaho's prominent Republicans are backing Trump. Cruz secured 20 of the state's 32 delegates while Trump captured just 12 delegates. Cruz has since ended his presidential campaign.

Idaho delegate Russ Fulcher said that he was unaware of a circulating petition to get Cruz's name nominated and had not been asked to sign anything.

"I haven't seen anything and I've been pretty involved," said Fulcher, a former Idaho gubernatorial candidate. "Never say never, but I feel like if there was something out there I would have seen it by now."

Fellow Gem State delegate Elaine King said despite supporting Monday's failed attempt to force a roll call vote, she does not support unbinding the delegates and will not sign a petition to get Cruz's name nominated.

King said she backed the roll call because she wanted to change party rules that currently give the majority of the power to GOP leaders. However, doing so would have included an effort to let delegates back any candidate on the first ballot.

"We were disgruntled because we were shut down, but we did not want anything to do with unbinding," King said. "We wanted our conservative rules to be considered."

Meanwhile, Yates praised Monday's speakers, saying that the Idaho delegation spoke positively of the night before during this morning's events.

He added that Melania Trump's speech was the perfect capstone to the evening and downplayed the negative criticism that she had possibly plagiarized sections of her speech.

"The lines I heard last night are lines I've heard at hundreds, if not thousands, of speeches from politicians in my lifetime," Yates said. I really doubt anyone has a copyright on these ideas ... to me, this is a cheap shot."



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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