McGrane endorsed by three former Idaho GOP governors in his run for Secretary of State

Updated: May 2

By Betsy Russell

March 10, 2022

https://www.idahopress.com/eyeonboise/mcgrane-endorsed-by-three-former-idaho-gop-governors-in-his-run-for-secretary-of-state/article_4b4f561b-567c-50fb-8c4e-20ccd4c17aa2.html


Phil McGrane held a press conference in the Capitol rotunda at which former three-term GOP Gov. Butch Otter introduced him, and announced that McGrane’s candidacy for Idaho Secretary of State has now been endorsed by three former Idaho GOP governors: Otter, former Gov. Dirk Kempthorne, and former Gov. Phil Batt. In the GOP primary, McGrane, the current elected Ada County clerk, faces state Rep. Dorothy Moon and state Sen. Mary Souza.

Former longtime Idaho Secretary of State Ben Ysursa, who is McGrane’s campaign chairman, praised McGrane’s “character, integrity, experience and proven leadership,” and said, “His performance as county clerk has been stellar. … He is the acknowledged go-to guy for elections in the state of Idaho. We need his proven leadership and experience to combat the viral disinformation that is out there in our election system.”

Otter, looking out into the ornate rotunda, where about 50 supporters were gathered, said, “It’s good to be back, just for a little while. … I had a few bad ones, but I had a lot of good days in this building … the people’s house.”

“I can tell you that after 25 elections against 49 opponents, I didn’t ever doubt whether or not I had won the election,” Otter said, “because the Secretary of State’s office, whether it was Pete Cenarrusa, whether it was Ben Ysursa, or whether it was Lawerence Denney, always projected that we were going to have a fair and honest election.”


“Like Ben, I’m a little unhappy, maybe even discouraged about some of the changes that we’re making in our voting laws,” Otter said, “especially the primary.” Idaho Republicans closed their primary while Otter was governor. “I always thought that was a mistake, and it cost me a Republican Party chairman,” he said. “But I still feel if we want fair elections, in order to get those fair elections you’ve got to let people vote for who they want, no matter which election that it is. But that’s a fight for another day.”

Otter said, “Phil Batt, Butch Otter, Dirk Kempthorne are behind Phil McGrane, because we understand the importance. I’ve known Phil for a long time, but I’ve watched him even longer than that. … Let’s keep him running the elections for the state.”

McGrane said, “I can’t tell you just how honored and privileged I am to be here right now. I kind of have to pinch myself. To be in the likes of Ben Ysursa, and Butch Otter, and Dirk Kempthorne, and Phil Batt, says a lot. When you look back on nearly the past three decades, Gov. Batt, Gov. Kempthorne, Gov. Otter are the ones who have led our state to the success we have today. They transformed our state and built what is attracting so many people to Idaho. As a kid looking up to these guys, it really sets a standard for what public service can be.”

McGrane, a 4th generation Idahoan, said, “No matter what you hear, what you read or see, we have a lot of good things going on in our state, and I think it’s through the leaders in our state that we can continue that success.”

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