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Posted 30 Apr 2001   For week ended April 20, 2001
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Sent on Mormon-News: 20Apr01

By Paul Carter

LDS Bishop Encouraged to Return to Idaho Politics

TWIN FALLS, IDAHO -- Randy Hansen, an LDS Bishop and owner of car dealerships in Twin Falls, Idaho, says he will consider running again for the District 23 seat in the Idaho legislature, when campaigning starts in the Summer of 2002. It is the same position he relinquished last year.

Mr. Hansen had held the seat until this past Fall. For personal reasons, he announced in early 2000 that he would not run for re-election. George Swan, a 50-year old cattle rancher was tapped by the Republican committee as that party's nominee. He won in November, and took office in December.

However, Mr. Swan had been diagnosed with terminal colon and liver cancer soon after choosing to campaign and he died last month. Thus, the seat has been set to be filled by gubernatorial appointment for the past weeks.

Many members of the legislature lobbied the governor, Dirk Kempthorne, for the return of Mr. Hansen. However, the Governor instead acted on the recommendations of District 23's Republican Central Committee and appointed Sharon Block to the vacant legislative position.

Ms. Block has served for the past four years as President of the Twin Falls County Republican Women and that group's members strongly urged that she be the County Party candidate, citing her tireless work for the party among women. A recent vote by Ms. Block against cutting the state's planned education budget has upset some Republican legislators, who saw the vote as not "toeing" the Republican party line. That perception has spurred some Republicans to call on Mr. Hansen to return to state politics.

With regard to deciding to run in the next campaign for the seat now held by Sharon Block, Mr. Hansen has said, "I've had at least 50 calls from people telling me that I should. I will certainly put together a committee to explore the possibility."


Politics behind Block appointment not so subtle
Twin Falls ID Times-News 15Apr01 T2
By Michael Journee: Times-News writer

See also:
Sworn In As State Legislator, LDS Man Continues Personal Battle


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