Three Democratic candidates for governor — Jerry Brady, Keith Allred and A.J. Balukoff — were among several hundred who attended Saturday’s memorial for Bethine Church.
Good sports, as ever, the trio let me snap a photo after the tribute to Church, who was a stellar recruiter and supporter of Democratic candidates.
Brady (’02 and ’06), is on the left; Allred (’10) is at the right, with Balukoff (’14).
Balukoff aims to unseat two-term Gov. Butch Otter, who seeks to extend his continuous reign in high office to 32 years. Otter was lieutenant governor for 14 years, spent six years in Congress and defeated Brady in the 2006 governor’s race.
The 2006 Brady-Otter race was the closest for Democrats since 1994, when Democrat Larry EchoHawk got 44 percent of the vote to Republican Phil Batt’s 52 percent. Batt’s win ended a 24-year string of Democratic control of the executive branch, by Govs. Cecil Andrus (14 years) and John Evans (10 years). Brady won 44 percent to Otter’s 53 percent in 2006. Four years later, Allred managed just 33 percent to Otter’s 59 percent.
Balukoff, who announced his candidacy in December, may see his chances improve if Otter is upset by tea party challenger Russ Fulcher, the No. 4 member of GOP leadership in the Idaho Senate
For those interested in more election data, the secretary of state’s office has an extensive archive of election results.