TRAHANT REPORTS—Idaho Rep. Paulette Jordan quietly won her primary election this week, the next step in her re-election bid.
“I’d like to take this opportunity to thank everyone for their vote of confidence in the primary election,” Jordan posted on Facebook. “It is a privilege to represent you and continue the good work on behalf of our legislative district and state. Now onto the general election in November!”
Jordan’s track record is impressive. She first ran for the House seat in 2012, lost, and then came right back and won two years later. She did this in an “off cycle” election (a non-presidential year) when Democrats usually fall short because turn out is so much lighter.
This November, Northern Idaho voters will have clear choice. Idaho is one of the most Republican states in the country and that creates an odd dynamic where Republicans battle with each other to show who is more conservative. Already this year two Republicans were eager to challenge Jordan (Carl Berglund won the contested primary) running on a platform of the Republican Liberty Caucus. That same group gave Jordan an “F” rating. One example of Berglund’s views is on public lands. He recently posted on Facebook that the U.S. Forest Service mismanages it’s timber costing Idaho jobs.
That’s a sharp contrast with Jordan.
In an interview with The Boise Weekly she said:
“You want to see things grow and get better. You want to see improvements amongst your people. When you’re connected to my land, you’re connected to my belief that I want to see your life get better. Tribes all across the board have that general understanding and mentality.”
Jordan presents Latah and Benewah counties in the legislature. Latah County is home to the University of Idaho and the Couer d’Alene Reservation is situated in Benewah.
We should be clear about what it means when Paulette Jordan wins in Idaho: The right candidate can win anywhere. Even in a deep, deep red state.
Mark Trahant is the Charles R. Johnson Endowed Professor of Journalism at the University of North Dakota. He is an independent journalist and a member of The Shoshone-Bannock Tribes. On Twitter @TrahantReports.