Lt. Gov. Jim Risch (R) announced this week that he is running for the seat being vacated next year by retiring Sen. Larry Craig (R).
Risch announced earlier this year that he would run for Senate if Craig retired. The lieutenant governor is set to face former Rep. Larry LaRocco (D) in the general election. Risch beat LaRocco by 20 points in last year’s lieutenant governor’s race.
Sen. Mike Crapo (R) is serving as co-chairman of Risch’s Senate campaign. Gov. Butch Otter (R), a former Congressman, is endorsing Risch and indicated he was set to appoint the lieutenant governor to replace Craig in the Senate when it appeared that the Senator was going to resign at the end of September.
Craig has since reversed his decision to resign. The decisions to resign had stemmed from his arrest in an airport bathroom sex sting. Craig pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor charge of disorderly conduct and has since tried unsuccessfully to have that guilty plea overturned.
— David M. Drucker