Critchfield quickly raises $22,500 for superintendent’s race

In the first week after announcing her candidacy for state schools superintendent, Debbie Critchfield raised at least $22,500 for her campaign.

Candidates don’t have to report their contributions in real time, but they must report contributions of at least $1,000 within 48 hours.

The $22,500 in contributions fall under that 48-hour requirement.

The early donor list includes two familiar names: House Speaker Scott Bedke, R-Oakley, who contributed $1,000; and Bill Gilbert, who along with Critchfield co-chaired Gov. Brad Little’s 2019 K-12 task force. Gilbert contributed $2,500 to the Critchfield campaign.

Critchfield, a State Board of Education member from Oakley, is one of two announced Republican candidates for state superintendent.

Branden Durst of Garden City — a former Democratic legislator now running as a Republican — reported one large recent donation. He received $1,000 from Idaho Falls attorney Bryan Smith, vice chairman of the Idaho Freedom Foundation’s board of directors.

GOP incumbent Sherri Ybarra has not announced whether she will seek a third term. And according to state campaign finance reports, she has received no large donations in 2021. She raised $380 in 2020 and spent $284.10, and entered 2021 with $187.28 in her campaign war chest.



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]

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