Thursday, September 4, 2008

Most Idaho candidates refuse questions

Posted By on Thu, Sep 4, 2008 at 11:46 AM

Project VoteSmart, a national database of politicians, candidates and their positions, has released its totals for this year’s surveys. Only four of nine federal candidates in Idaho agreed to answer the group's questions, and 37 percent of state office seekers responded.
They call it the Political Courage Test, and 37 percent is not a bad response rate for state offices, Project VoteSmartspokesman Brandon Horton said.

I asked Horton why Idaho candidates should care about this national survey (which happens to be based in Montana).

“Our test and the organization itself is completely nonpartisan,” Horton said. So of the dozens of surveys candidates are asked to fill out during election season, VoteSmart has a track record, a national scale and a board of directors that warrant some attention.

The group’s board includes both George McGovern and Newt Gingrich. It used to include John McCain, according to Horton, but he was forced off the board when he refused to answer the questionnaire, a requirement for all board members.

Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin also declined the survey in her bid for governor, but maybe she should get a second chance now that she’s playing in a different league.


The site is full of fascinating data, like this list of dozens of individuals who would like to be president. You can also see who answered from Idaho, though it does not look like the site is quite up to date yet.

After finding that only 10 percent of the public knew about the database, Project VoteSmart has launched a national PR campaign, including a big voter education bus that was in Boise a few weeks ago. But that's not why we're posting this. It's because the site is damn useful and Horton promises it will get more useful when the Web interface is updated.

Here is the list of who answered and who did not, provided by Project VoteSmart.

2008 POLITICAL COURAGE TEST
Idaho Congressional General Results
TOTAL CANDIDATES RETURNING: 4
TOTAL CANDIDATES: 9
FINAL RETURN RATE: 44%

CANDIDATES WILLING TO PROVIDE VOTERS WITH INFORMATION DURING TEST
Deborah Holmes ID U.S. House 2 Democratic
Michael Simpson ID U.S. House 2 Republican
Pro-Life ID U.S. Senate Independent
Kent Marmon ID U.S. Senate Libertarian

CANDIDATES REFUSING TO PROVIDE VOTERS WITH INFORMATION DURING TEST
Walter Minnick ID U.S. House 1 Democratic
William Sali ID U.S. House 1 Republican
Larry LaRocco ID U.S. Senate Democratic
Rex Rammell ID U.S. Senate Independent
James Risch ID U.S. Senate Republican

Idaho State Legislative General Results
TOTAL CANDIDATES RETURNING: 62
TOTAL CANDIDATES: 169
FINAL RETURN RATE: 37%

CANDIDATES WILLING TO PROVIDE VOTERS WITH INFORMATION DURING TEST
Eric Anderson ID State House 1A Republican Steve Elgar ID State House 1A Democratic
George Eskridge ID State House 1B Republican Tom Hollingsworth ID State House 1B Democratic
C.J. Rose ID State House 2B Democratic James Clark ID State House 3A Republican
Phil Hart ID State House 3B Republican Marge Chadderdon ID State House 4A Republican
Tamara Poelstra ID State House 4A Democratic James Hollingsworth ID State House 4B Republican
George Sayler ID State House 4B Democratic Robert Nonini ID State House 5A Republican
Judith Brown ID State House 6A Democratic Bob Hassoldt ID State House 6B Republican
Shirley Ringo ID State House 6B Democratic Elizabeth Chavez ID State House 7A Democratic
John Rusche ID State House 7B Democratic Darrell Bolz ID State House 10B Republican
Bob Solomon ID State House 11A Democratic Steven Thayn ID State House 11A Republican
Paul Venable ID State House 11B Constitution Richard Mabbutt ID State House 12A Democratic
Gary Collins ID State House 12B Republican   Sunny Freeman ID State House 12B Democratic
Greg Funk ID State House 15B Democratic  Grant Burgoyne ID State House 16A Democratic
Joan Cloonan ID State House 16A Republican Bill Killen ID State House 17A Democratic
Branden Durst ID State House 18A Democratic Phylis King ID State House 18B Democratic
James Oyler ID State House 18B Libertarian Rex Kerr ID State House 20A Libertarian
Marv Hagedorn ID State House 20B Republican Rosemary Ardinger ID State House 22B Democratic
Donna Pence ID State House 25B Democratic John Stevenson ID State House 26A Republican
Maxine Bell ID State House 26B Republican Dennis Lake ID State House 28A Republican
Allen Andersen ID State House 29A Democratic James Ruchti ID State House 29B Democratic
Jerry Shively ID State House 33A Democratic John McGimpsey ID State House 33B Democratic
Mack Shirley ID State House 34A Republican Calvin Leman ID State House 35A Democratic
Michael Jorgenson ID State Senate 3 Republican Jeremy Paul Boggess ID State Senate 4 Independent
John Goedde ID State Senate 4 Republican Kenneth Howard ID State Senate 4 Democratic
James Hammond ID State Senate 5 Republican Sheldon Vincenti ID State Senate 6 Democratic
Leland Heinrich ID State Senate 8 Republican Kirsten Richardson ID State Senate 11 Independent
T. Allen Hoover ID State Senate 17 Republican Nicole LeFavour ID State Senate 19 Democratic
Shirley McKague ID State Senate 20 Republican William Chisholm ID State Senate 23 Democratic
Dean Cameron ID State Senate 26 Republican Diane Bilyeu ID State Senate 29 Democratic
Ralph Lillig ID State Senate 29 Republican Bart Davis ID State Senate 33 Republican
Brent Hill ID State Senate 34 Republican Luke Prange ID State Senate 35Democratic

REST REFUSED...

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