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Eye On Boise

All three GOP candidates for guv claim victory in last night’s debate

From left, Tommy Ahlquist, Brad Little and Raul Labrador debate on Monday night, April 23, 2018, in the
From left, Tommy Ahlquist, Brad Little and Raul Labrador debate on Monday night, April 23, 2018, in the "Idaho Debates" at the Idaho Public Television studio in Boise; the debate was broadcast live. The three are vying for the GOP nomination for governor of Idaho. (AP / Otto Kitsinger)

Less than half an hour after the close of last night’s wide-ranging and often testy GOP gubernatorial debate, all three candidates issued statements touting their performance and claiming victory in the matchup. Here are their full statements:


“Knowledge and Experience Prove to Be the Best Option at IPTV Debate”

 “I enjoyed this evening’s debate and being able to discuss the issues with my opponents. I am proud of the record that we have accomplished in Idaho, 100-thousand plus jobs, improving education and economic prosperity. We provide opportunity here in Idaho. We are a great state. I love Idaho.”


“Tommy Ahlquist Wins Gubernatorial Debate: Political Outsider Shakes-Up Career Politicians with Confident Leadership, Real-World Experience & Fresh Approach”

“The Tommy Ahlquist for Governor Campaign today issued the following statement after sweeping the second gubernatorial debate.  In the debate, Ahlquist showed strong leadership backed by decades of real-world experience and clearly articulated Idaho’s need for a fresh approach and new ideas in the Idaho Governor’s office – a stark contrast to his status quo opponents who’ve collectively held political office for 29 years. “Tommy Ahlquist’s confident leadership, decades of real-world experience and fresh approach to building an even better Idaho swept tonight’s debate – in stunning contrast to the ‘same old’ answers of the professional politicians. Tommy has a real-world track record of getting things done – and tonight was clearly no different,” said David Johnston, Ahlquist’s campaign manager.


“Labrador the only candidate Idaho Conservatives can trust to defend conservative principles”

 “The people of Idaho will decide if they prefer candidates who talk about being conservative like Tommy and Brad, or if they prefer a candidate with actual conservative accomplishments like me,” said Labrador.  “While my opponents have been busy making empty promises on the campaign trail, I am the only one standing up and fighting for conservative principles.”

“I stopped gas-tax increases in Idaho, fought the Obama-Pelosi agenda, created the House Freedom Caucus in Congress to hold my party accountable, helped oust Speaker John Boehner, prevented amnesty for illegal aliens, helped President Trump get elected, partnered with President Trump to shake up Washington, voted for tax reform and deregulation, and helped thousands of Idaho veterans and constituents receive the benefits they were duly owed by the Federal government.”

“Actions speak louder than words. I trust Idaho voters will choose a proven conservative leader for the next governor of Idaho.”

You can watch the full debate online here, along all the other Idaho Debates for the upcoming May 15 primary election. Here’s the full schedule:

April 17, 7 pm MT/PT: Lieutenant Governor, Republican

April 19, 8:30 pm MT/PT: State Treasurer, Republican

April 22, 7 pm MT/PT: Governor, Democrat

April 23: 8 pm MT/PT: Governor, Republican

April 27, 8 pm MT/PT: Superintendent of Public Instruction, Republican

April 29, 6:30 pm MT/PT: 1st Congressional District, Republican

The Idaho Debates are a collaborative effort among the Idaho Press Club, Boise State University’s School of Public Service, University of Idaho’s McClure Center, Idaho State University’s Department of Political Science, League of Women Voters Voter Education Fund, and Idaho Public Television.

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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