Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Idaho First District Congressional Race

I heard recently that Idaho State Treasurer Ron Crane has thrown his hat in the ring for the 1st District Congressional race, which promises to be hotly contested in November. While Crane, no doubt, is qualified, Vaughn Ward has been spending quite a bit of time up in North Idaho lately, while Crane has not (I do not even recall seeing him in Moscow during his race for State Treasurer, though I could be mistaken). Even though Crane served for a number of years in the legislature, and has managed to get elected to Statewide office, State Treasurer is a rather obscure position which, absent scandal, does not lend itself to a lot of media attention. I would bet that, if you asked 100 people on the street who the State Treasurer is, maybe 10 would be able to identify Crane.

From meeting Ward this last weekend, my impression is that he is a skilled campaigner - he knows how to "sell" himself, but does not come across as a "used car salesman" either. He doesn't try to play the fun-loving cowboy (Butch Otter), or the "tell-it-like-it-is-regardless-of-what-others-think" conservative (Bill Sali), but strikes the perfect balance, giving the impression of confidence, competence, and sincerity. Don't get me wrong - I think we would be in good hands with Ron Crane in D.C., but Ward has the makings of a leader, and will be a stronger challenger to Minnick.

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