BOISE — Four independent candidates for president have filed to be on the ballot in Idaho this November.
Jill Stein, the Green Party’s standard bearer; Darrell Castle, who is the nominee of the national Constitution Party but doesn’t have its ballot line in Idaho; Evan McMullin, a conservative who announced his independent candidacy for president a little more than two weeks ago; and Rocky De La Fuente, a businessman who campaigned unsuccessfully for the Democratic presidential nomination, have all submitted the required paperwork to appear on the ballot as independents, according to the Idaho secretary of state’s office.
The deadline to file as an independent presidential candidate in Idaho was Thursday. The Democrats, Republicans, Libertarians and the Constitution Party are recognized as parties in Idaho and have their own ballot lines, while independent and other minor-party candidates need to gather 1,000 signatures to qualify for the presidential ballot and appear on it as independents.
Hillary Clinton is the Democratic Party nominee, Donald Trump the Republican, Gary Johnson the Libertarian. Scott Copeland, who won the Idaho Constitution Party’s March presidential primary, has the party’s ballot line in Idaho in November.
Both of the major parties have also named the four electors who will, if they carry the state, cast their votes in the Electoral College. The Republicans electors will be Melinda Smyser, a former state senator from Canyon County; Jennifer Locke, a precinct committeewoman from Kootenai County; Caleb Lakey; and Layne Bangerter, a longtime staffer for U.S. Sen. Mike Crapo who is Trump’s state campaign director. All four of them were Trump delegates (or alternates in Lakey’s case) at the Republican National Convention in Cleveland.
The Democrats have named former U.S. Rep. Larry LaRocco, of McCall; Jeanne Buell, a Kootenai County resident and former state party vice chairwoman; Wendy Jaquet, a Ketchum resident and longtime state House member; and Diane Bilyeu, a former state senator from Pocatello.
Idaho hasn’t gone for a Democratic presidential candidate since 1964. The last statewide poll in mid-July showed Trump to be beating Clinton by almost 2-to-1, although only three-quarters of self-identified Democrats and Republicans said at that time that they planned to vote for their party’s nominees. Johnson pulled 5 percent support statewide in that poll, Stein, 3 percent.
NATHAN BROWN [email protected] Aug 26, 2016