Senate Majority Caucus Chairman Russ Fulcher will make stops in Meridian and at airports in Coeur d’Alene and Idaho Falls Saturday to announce his decision on whether to challenge Gov. Butch Otter in the May 2014 Republican primary.
The Meridian Republican spent three weeks on statewide a “Russ Fulcher Listens” tour, billed as an exploratory campaign. He picked up from there with a Monday appearance in Coeur d’Alene with tea party backed colleagues from the Legislature.
In a news release Wednesday night, Fulcher announced that he will make his plans known Saturday.
“After much prayerful consideration, Republican Senator Russ Fulcher has made a decision about a potential gubernatorial bid and will publicly announce his intentions,” said the release.
Fulcher, who isn’t made of money, surely wouldn’t be flying around the state to say he’s decided not to run. Despite Otter’s likely financial advantage and incumbency, Fulcher’s in.
The former Micron and Preco executive is no stranger to uphill challenges. In 2011, he ran against the favorite for the top spot in Senate leadership, losing to Senate President Pro Tem Brent Hill, R-Rexburg. Fulcher rebounded the following year when GOP Caucus Chairman John McGee resigned in a sexual harassment scandal, allowing Fulcher to recapture his caucus chairman post.
Fulcher’s entry in the race could make for a historic campaign. The last time an Idaho governor was defeated in his party primary was 1966, when three-term Gov. Bob Smylie lost to Sen. Don Samuelson.
Here’s the release:
Russ Fulcher to Announce Decision
10:00AM (MST) Meridian
Courtyard by Marriott
1789 S Eagle Rd
Meridian, ID 83642
11:45AM (Pacific) Coeur d’Alene
11101 Airport Drive
Hayden Lake, ID 83835
3:30PM (MST) Idaho Falls
2000 International Way
Idaho Falls, ID