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Most Labradors are a lot friendlier


Oh, Idaho. You're the only state we can think of where an Otter being followed by a Labrador isn't either part of a hunting show or a Furry sex roleplay. But it looks like it's going to happen: with Idaho Gov. C.L. "Butch" Otter leaving office at the end of his third term, Republican Rep. Raúl Labrador announced Tuesday he's running for governor of the Gem State. Maybe he figures that with his name in the news after his confident insistence that "Nobody dies because they don’t have access to health care," this is the perfect time to take advantage of his unexpected national profile, even if it's a national profile as A Idiot (and a heartless idiot at that).

Labrador, a founding member of the House Freedom Caucus and a key player in making Trumpcare even meaner and bastardly so it could win the votes of people precisely as sociopathic as himself, issued a statement touting his conservative cred:

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.

Yup, because Idaho state government has been such a hotbed of liberalism up to now. Three other Republicans have already announced for the 2018 gubernatorial primary: current Lt. Gov. Brad Little, former state Sen. Russ Fulcher, and Boise developer Tommy Ahlquist. There's only one declared Democrat, Troy Minton, who may be a less than marquee power against the eventual Republican nominee, considering Minton is homeless, and at the time of a recent Guardian profile, was in jail on a probation violation. There are other Democrats in Idaho, of course, though few with the political profile or funding likely to make a serious run at the governorship. At least, nobody yet -- if Donald Trump and his RepubliPals keep taking the country down the path toward permanent buffoonery, there's no telling. Of course, Idaho Dems may want to focus in 2018 on getting a D butt in Labrador's seat; he plans to serve out the remainder of his congressional term no matter what happens in the primary.

Before running for Congress in 2010, Labrador had served in the state Lege, where he became popular with one of Idaho's two political parties, the Rabid Rightwing Republicans (the other party is the Doing Business Conservative Republicans, also known in Idaho as Goddamn Liberals. We have Democrats, too, mostly in the university towns where people have let crazy liberal ideas sneak into the state). Born in Puerto Rico, Mr Labrador is a Mormon whose family moved to Nevada when he was a child; he attended Brigham Young University as an undergrad and University of Washington School of Law before moving to Idaho, his wife's home state. Actual Labrador retrievers have generally tended to avoid association with the congressman, seeing him as seriously lacking in empathy.

Labrador is currently in the national spotlight, having been mocked all over the Liberal Media for his comments at a town hall in Lewiston Friday where he joyfully refuted the "indefensible" idea that the American Health WeDon'tCare Act would lead to people on Medicaid dying, explaining, "No no, you know that line is so indefensible. Nobody dies because they don’t have access to health care."

Labrador later explained on Facebook he never meant that people denied medical care might die; rather, his comment "wasn’t very elegant," but he was

trying to explain that all hospitals are required by law to treat patients in need of emergency care regardless of their ability to pay and that the Republican plan does not change that.

Oh! Well in that case, he's still lying, as Politifact pointed out just in time for him to declare his candidacy for governor. Even though the 1986 Emergency Medical Treatment and Active Labor Act does indeed require that Emergency Rooms stabilize people in a medical emergency without regard to their ability to pay, ER's are no substitute for regular health care -- especially preventive care and visits for chronic conditions -- and people without insurance are far more likely to die of treatable illnesses than those without. We have a feeling Labrador's "Pants on Fire" rating -- even for his clarification -- will play a big role in the campaign, although this being Idaho, we aren't sure how much the remarks will hurt him in a Republican primary. We like being mean to the poor here, after all. Some of our elected representatives have thought health insurance is just like the Holocaust. And at least some Idahoans downright resent any government interference with the important parental choice to let sick children die, if that's what Jesus wants. So Labrador may be just the guy Republicans want -- if he really works hard, he might manage to boost Idaho's uninsured rate way past the national average.

So good luck, Raúl Labrador! But are you really sure you want to be stuck in Boise, with all the hippies and liberal college professors and mommybloggers? This place is a veritable Berkeley of Idaho, is what it is. If you're tired of Congress, surely there's some rightwing think tank that'd hire you.

Yr Wonkette is supported by reader donations! Please click the "Donate" linky to help us expand the Boise Office's bunker.

[HuffPo / MagicValley.com / Politifact]

Doktor Zoom

Doktor Zoom's real name is Marty Kelley, and he lives in the wilds of Boise, Idaho. He is not a medical doctor, but does have a real PhD in Rhetoric. You should definitely donate some money to this little mommyblog where he has finally found acceptance and cat pictures. He is on maternity leave until 2033. Here is his Twitter, also. His quest to avoid prolixity is not going so great.

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