Campaign filings news: A flurry of primaries in Idaho Falls

One of the Statehouse’s key education budget-writers has a primary opponent.

Ammon Mayor Sean Coletti filed campaign paperwork Tuesday; he will challenge 12-year Rep. Wendy Horman in the May 21 GOP primary.

Horman, R-Idaho Falls, co-chairs the Joint Finance-Appropriations Committee. She has played a key role in crafting education budgets during her six terms in the Statehouse.

Horman serves in Bonneville County’s legislative District 32, a historic GOP stronghold which has been marked by a spate of intraparty infighting. Horman and Sen. Kevin Cook have received “guidance” from the Legislative District 32 Committee, admonishing the lawmakers to adhere to the GOP platform. The committee has formally censured Rep. Stephanie Mickelsen, R-Idaho Falls; according to East Idaho News, the committee is saying Mickelsen is prohibited from identifying herself as a Republican on campaign literature.

Mickelsen tells East Idaho News she plans to run as a Republican.

She has two GOP primary opponents: Sean Calvert Crystal of Ammon and Kelly Golden of Idaho Falls. Cook also has a Republican opponent, Keith Newberry of Idaho Falls.

The candidate filing period runs through Friday, with all 105 legislative seats on this year’s ballot.

Some other filings news:

An opponent for JFAC’s Senate co-chair. Horman’s Senate counterpart on JFAC — Eagle Republican C. Scott Grow — also has a Republican primary opponent. Mac Raslan of Sweet filed Monday.

A big-money rematch is official. Sen. Scott Herndon, R-Sagle, and former state Sen. Jim Woodward of Sagle have both made it official. They will square off once again in District 1, the state’s northernmost legislative district.

This rematch comes as no surprise, and both candidates have been aggressively raising money for months. According to current sunshine reports, Woodward has raised nearly $106,000, including $20,000 he has loaned to his campaign. Herndon has raised nearly $79,000.

Herndon now sits on JFAC and the Senate Education Committee.


Kevin Richert

Kevin Richert

Senior reporter and blogger Kevin Richert specializes in education politics and education policy. He has more than 30 years of experience in Idaho journalism. He is a frequent guest on "Idaho Reports" on Idaho Public Television and "Idaho Matters" on Boise State Public Radio. Follow Kevin on Twitter: @KevinRichert. He can be reached at [email protected]

Get EdNews in your inbox

Weekly round up every Friday