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Bingham County Republicans sue state GOP; Chairwoman responds

BINGHAM COUNTY, Idaho (KIFI) - The Bingham County Republican Central Committee is suing the state Republican party over what they say are "bully tactics" by the larger committee.

A press release from the Bingham County Republicans says the lawsuit involves an election their committee held to choose a new chairman after Dan Cravens resigned in July.

The Bingham County Republicans say Idaho Republican Party Chairwoman Dorothy Moon declared the election invalid and announced her intentions to hold her own election.

"Once an election takes place, you can't simply nullify an election," State Committeeman Ben Fuhriman said. "You have to appeal the election. There's processes for these types of things. So that you don't have a dictator who just does whatever they want. Right. And we have checks and balances. It's what makes our system as good as it is."

Party rules allow Bingham County Republicans to make an appeal, which they have filed and say the Chairwoman has ignored.

“Chairwoman Moon talks about upholding the rules, but she’s breaking the rules by refusing to allow us to appeal,” Chairman elect Matt Thompson said.

Chairwoman Moon, however, says she did not receive any appeal until the day before the lawsuit was filed.

Bingham Republicans claim Moon similar tactics in a Power County committee election.

Allegedly after declaring a December election of officers void, Moon staged a subsequent election. Fuhriman says Moon and her allies distributed misinformation about the start time of the meeting.

The lawsuit accuses Moon and the Republican Party of dealing with the county in a deceptive manner.

"Chairwoman Moon said that she wants to unify our party," Furhiman said. "It doesn't feel like that's what's happening. It feels like you guys did something that we don't like. Therefore we're going to redo it."

Fuhriman says the disagreement leading to the election being overturned is relatively small.

"One might be able to argue, but it's really it's minuscule," Fuhriman said.

Chairwoman Moon, however, says the committee election broke party rules.

"The plaintiff admits that Chairman Dan Cravens announced that he planned to resign on August 1st, 2023," Moon said.

He conducted an election on July 20, 2023 to fill a vacancy that did not yet exist before you can hold an election to fill a vacancy. That vacancy must actually exist in a simple check of the calendar shows that the date of the election July 20 was way before the date of the vacancy on Aug. 1.

"It is notable that this new meeting would be among the same members that held the illegitimate meeting to the likely outcome would probably be the same as state chairman," Moon said. "I have only called the meeting. I would not have a vote or any influence at all on the outcome."

A restraining order filed in 7th District Court on Friday will put the Sept.18 re-election meeting on hold until the original election can be reviewed. A hearing on the matter has been scheduled for Sept. 28.

Article Topic Follows: Idaho Politics

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Seth Ratliff

Seth is a reporter for Local News 8 and Eyewitness News 3.


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