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Bingham County Republicans vs Idaho GOP: Timeline of events

BINGHAM COUNTY, Idaho (KIFI) - The Bingham County Republican leaders have entered court appointed depositions as a judge will now decide the merits and outcome of the case. 

The question remains, what lead us to this point?

Here is a breakdown of the timeline of the case.

June 15, 2023: Dan Cravens-the former Bingham County republican chairman announced his upcoming resignation. However, he would stay in office until Aug. 1.

July 20, 2023: The Bingham County Republicans elected a new chairman.

This is where the problem begins. State guidelines say you must give at least seven days notice before an election.

The GOP also says Cravens position was not yet vacant. The Bingham County Republicans disagree.

"When we came to that meeting on July 20th, everybody knew exactly why we were there on the agenda," Bingham County Republicans State Committeeman Ben Fuhriman said. "And we had a few people who put their names forward and we had votes and everybody was in an agreement with moving forward on the meeting."

July 27, 2023: The Idaho GOP receives a written complaint claiming that BCRCC's new county chairman, Matt Thompson, was not properly elected.

August 11, 2023: State GOP Chairwoman Dorothy Moon begins investigating.

September 5, 2023: Chairwoman Moon issues a written response to the grievance, concluding that according to party rules the GOP Chairperson must conduct a new election.

September 8, 2023: Moon and the Idaho GOP publish notice of the meeting in a local newspaper.

"She gives notice to the entire community," State GOP Attorney Bryan Smith said. "And I'm certain that somebody in Bingham County reached the post register and saw the notice that was published."

September 11, 2023: Moon gives seven days notice to Bingham County of special meeting for a new election.

The events come to a head on Sept. 14.

Sep 14, 2023

10:12 a.m.: Bingham County files an appeal to state GOP vice chair, who never forwards it on to Chairwoman Moon.

Bingham County Republicans appeal

3:20 p.m.: Acting Bingham County chairman Matt Thompson sends a copy of the appeal to Chairwoman Moon in an email.

Matt Thompson's email to Dorothy Moon

3:22 p.m.: Matt Thompson sends another copy of the appeal to Chairwoman moon.

4:25 p.m.: An hour and five minutes later, after not receiving an immediate response-Bingham County leaders file a temporary restraining order and preliminary injunction. 

"I know we get hundreds of emails every day," Fuhriman argued. "And I don't read the ones that say, 'hey, you can save 10% on your car insurance.' But the ones that say, 'Hey, urgent, you're in trouble.' I read those."

GOP attorney Bryan Smith responded, "They literally gave Dorothy Moon 87(65) minutes to recognize that she had an appeal before they sued."

I asked both men if there was any chance for the parties to reconcile outside the courtroom or before the appeal in January.

"We only wanted to stop her from coming and running her own election in our county without any preparation for us," Fuhriman said. "We just wanted to stop that and we wanted to move forward with our business. That's what we wanted. That's what we got."

As for Smith, he said, "In my opinion, It's absolutely ridiculous that that we're fighting over this, when Matt Thompson and others agree that if Dorothy were to come in and hold an election, Matt Thompson would win again."

The Bingham County Republicans' appeal is set to be heard in January of next year. Until then, the legitimacy of their chairman is up for debate.

Article Topic Follows: Idaho Politics

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Seth Ratliff

Seth is a reporter for Local News 8.


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