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Rep. Raúl Labrador (R-Idaho) announced Tuesday that, instead of running for re-election in his safe Republican seat, he will run for governor of Idaho in 2018, reports the Huffington Post.
In his statement announcing the decision Labrador said”
“Idaho needs a proven conservative leader who will stand against the special interests and politicians that have picked the winners and losers in our state Capitol for too long. Idaho needs a strong leader who will make government fair for everyone. Idaho needs a governor who will provide a new vision, a new approach and new leadership.”
His official announcement puts to bed the speculation regarding the staunch conservatives political future. Especially given that for years, Labrador has seemed frustrated by the slow pace of lawmaking. He’s bemoaned the erosion of regular order in Congress and been a key player himself in thwarting major pieces of legislation, according to the Huffington Post.
During the building of President Donald Trump‘s cabinet, Labrador was being heavily considered for the secretary of the interior.
His attention from the Trump administration doesn’t mean that he is a toe-the-line Republican however, as more recently the Representative was in headlines for sticking with the House Freedom Caucus, which he was a founder of, to put a damper on the GOP House leadership’s initial plans for repealing Obamacare. In fact, President Trump, in that fight, even mentioned Labrador by name tweeting:
If @RepMarkMeadows, @Jim_Jordan and @Raul_Labrador would get on board we would have both great healthcare and massive tax cuts & reform.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) March 30, 2017
Labrador did support the passage of the House leadership’s second version of the American Health Care Act (AHCA).
While Labrador took the seat from Democrat Walt Minnick in 2010, it is not expected to flip to a Democrat. The Partisan Voting Index score for Idaho’s 1st Congressional District is R+21, meaning in the past two presidential elections, the district was an average of 21 points more Republican than the country overall, explained the Huffington Post.
Labrador plans to complete his current term in the House while seeking the governorship, according to the Huffington Post.