Statehouse shakeup: Keough will not seek re-election

The senior member of the Idaho Senate is stepping down next year.

Sen. Shawn Keough, R-Sandpoint, says she will not seek re-election in 2018, the Bonner County Bee reported Tuesday.

A 22-year Statehouse veteran, Keough co-chairs the Joint Finance-Appropriations Committee — the House-Senate panel that writes budgets for the K-12 system, higher education and state agencies.

Keough represents Bonner and Boundary counties — Idaho’s northernmost legislative district. A moderate, Keough has withstood conservative challenges in recent Republican primaries.

In announcing her decision to step aside, Keough also endorsed a would-be successor, James Woodward, a Sagle Republican. Woodward filed his initial candidate paperwork on July 3.

Keough’s decision represents another shakeup in the Legislature.

On June 29, Senate Majority Leader Bart Davis, R-Idaho Falls, was nominated to a vacant U.S. attorney’s seat. That appointment sets up a scramble for Davis’ spot in the Senate — as well as his pivotal spot in Senate leadership.

JFAC also will be in transition. The committee’s House co-chair, Maxine Bell, R-Jerome, has previously said she will not seek re-election in 2018.



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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