Former U.S. Rep. Raul Labrador jumped into the GOP race for attorney general Wednesday.
“Right now the great battles for the soul of our nation are taking place in our courthouses,” Labrador said in a news release. “The Biden administration is pushing an unlawful agenda that interferes with the sovereignty of the state of Idaho and the freedoms, liberties, and economic future of Idahoans. As attorney general, I will defend our liberties and hold the Biden administration accountable.”
Labrador’s announcement means three Republicans are in the running for attorney general. He joins Art Macomber of Coeur d’Alene and Dennis Boyles of Sandpoint, who have both been linked to Lt. Gov. Janice McGeachin, who is running for governor.
Republican Lawrence Wasden, Idaho’s attorney general since 2002, has been mum about his plans.
While Wasden’s political future is unclear, Labrador’s announcement played to the recurring tension between the attorney general and lawmakers.
“I will also be a true partner with conservative lawmakers in the Legislature as they work to draft and write good laws that will stand up against the gamesmanship of activist judges,” Labrador said. “It is critical that we have a new attorney general who can work with the Legislature to craft legislation to withstand judicial tests and protect Idaho’s sovereignty.”
According to the secretary of state’s election page, Labrador hasn’t yet raised any money for the 2022 election. However, he has appointed a campaign treasurer: Layne Bangerter, who headed Donald Trump’s Idaho presidential campaign in 2016.
Labrador began his political career in the Legislature, serving in the House from 2006 to 2010. He was elected to Idaho’s 1st Congressional District in November 2010, serving four terms in Congress. He gave up his seat in Congress to run for governor, finishing second to Gov. Brad Little in the May 2018 GOP primary.
Labrador is also a former state Republican Party chair. He now serves as a board member for Central District Health.