Many conservatives feel Governor Butch Otter should be challenged in 2010’s Primary. I’ve heard very little belief in Rex Rammell as the candidate to do that and that was before he filed Chapter 11. The question is who could challenge Governor Otter and hope to prevail.
I’ve given this some thought and have an answer. I have no clue if she’d run or even I’d endorse her, but Ada County Commissioner Sharon Ullman occurs to me as a very likely candidate.
Conservatives complaints with Otter have centered around a couple of key issues: taxes and government arrogance with the Chris Pentico arrest epitomizing that. Ullman’s strength as an open government advocate and a budget hawk could answer those questions quite nicely.
The biggest knock on Ullman is the allegation that she doesn’t work well with others. Butch Otter doesn’t have much room to talk after the last session.
Ullman also has name recognition, money, and activist power that would form behind her well in Ada and Canyon County, and her general sympathies would end up helping her in Rural Idaho.
Could she make a campaign in the first two years of her term on the Ada County Commission? Absolutely. Conrad Burns ran for the U.S. Senate in the middle of his first term as Yellowstone County Commission in Montana. So, it would not be unheard of.
One possible issue with Ullman is that her views on moral issues are unknown as they’ve not been relevant to any job she sought. If those aren’t traditionalists, many people who vote on the cultural issues would choose Otter over her.
If Ullman’s views are in line with the conservative base then she would be a huge threat to Governor Otter, bringing anti-establishment credentials mixed with executive experience: a potent mix that I’m not sure Governor Otter could withstand.