State Senate Minority Leader Michelle Stennett, D-Ketchum, has filed to run for re-election, along with a host of others who represent Blaine County—or aspire to.

    The filing period for candidates seeking a county, state or federal elected office opened Monday. It extends until March 11 at 5 p.m.

    Stennett is up for re-election and is facing a challenge from Bellevue Republican Dale Ewersen, who has also filed to run.

    District 26, which includes Blaine County, has both its House of Representatives seats up for election this year. Rep. Donna Pence, D-Gooding, announced her retirement last fall, opening the seat up for a new lawmaker.

    Thus far, it’s a two-person race to replace her in Boise. Democrat Sally Toone of Gooding and Republican Alex Sutter of Richfield have announced their candidacy and have filed to run.

    Toone is a retired educator and longtime friend of Pence, while Sutter is a business owner who challenged Pence for the seat in 2010, unsuccessfully.

    The third District 26 seat is held by Rep. Steven Miller, R-Fairfield, who’s survived two tough fights in the previous two elections.

    Miller ran for office after former Rep. Wendy Jaquet, D-Ketchum, announced her retirement before the 2012 election. That year, Miller narrowly bested Democrat John Remington, 50.9 percent to 49.1 percent.

    In 2014, Miller defeated former Olympian and Blaine County Democrat Dick Fosbury, 50.5 percent to 49.5 percent.

    Miller hadn’t filed as of Tuesday evening, nor has he drawn a challenger.

    In the congressional contests, U.S. Rep. Mike Simpson, R-Idaho, has filed for re-election. Simpson’s 2nd Congressional District includes Blaine County.

    Idaho’s other congressman, Rep. Raul Labrador, has also filed to run for re-election, as has U.S. Sen. Mike Crapo. Both are Republicans. Simpson, Crapo and Labrador did not have challengers as of Tuesday night.

Locally, Blaine County has several elected offices up this year.

Two of the three county commissioners, Jacob Greenberg and Angenie McCleary, both Democrats, are up for re-election. Hailey resident Gary Brower has filed to run against Greenberg. As of Thursday, McCleary remained unopposed.

    County Sheriff Gene Ramsey and Prosecuting Attorney Jim Thomas will also have to seek re-election this year. No one had filed to run against either by Thursday.

    Declarations of candidacy can be obtained and filed at the Blaine County Clerks’ Office, 206 First Ave. S., Suite 200, in Hailey. The office is open from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Thursday, and from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday.

Email the writer: pjensen@mtexpress.com

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