Idaho GOP incumbents Simpson, Fulcher go for reelection
In this June 29, 2020 file photo, Rep. Russ Fulcher, R-Idaho listens to testimony on Capitol Hill in Washington. Fulcher is seeking reelection in Idaho's 1st Congressional District in the Nov. 8, 2022 election. (Bonnie Cash/Pool Photo via AP, File)
By KEITH RIDLER
BOISE — Incumbent Republican U.S. Reps. Mike Simpson and Russ Fulcher are seeking reelection in Tuesday's election in deeply conservative Idaho.
Simpson, 72, is seeking a 13th term representing the eastern portion of the state in Idaho's 2nd Congressional District.
Fulcher, 60, is seeking a third term representing the state's 1st Congressional District that covers the western portion of the state and stretches from the state's northern to southwestern border.
The Republican primary is generally considered the election that determines who will eventually hold office in a state where all state-wide offices and the two U.S. Senate and U.S. House seats are held by Republicans.
Simpson easily turned aside a primary challenger who sought to portray Simpson as not conservative enough. Fulcher didn't face a primary challenger.
Simpson's district includes the Idaho National Laboratory, one of the U.S. Department of Energy's 17 national labs and the nation's top nuclear research lab. It's one of the state's top employers and a big part of the eastern Idaho economy. Simpson has been a key figure in approving federal funding for research at the lab as well as money for water system upgrades at Mountain Home Air Force Base, also in Simpson's district.
Fulcher ran for governor in 2014, positioning himself further to the right than the already conservative incumbent, C.L. “Butch” Otter, who went on to win a third term.
In the general election, Simpson faces Democrat Wendy Norman, who has cited affordable, high-quality healthcare and education as priorities.
Fulcher is facing Democrat Kaylee Peterson and Libertarian Darian Drake. Fulcher contends the Affordable Care Act has resulted in skyrocketing health insurance premiums. Peterson cites income inequality, health care costs and education as among her top priorities.
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