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Politics & Government
C.L. “Butch” Otter has been a fixture of Idaho politics since 1973 when he was elected to his first term in the state House of Representatives.Otter was elected to his third-consecutive term as governor on Nov. 4, 2014. He was elected to his second term as Idaho governor on Nov. 2, 2010. Otter first became Idaho's governor on Nov. 7, 2006.Gov. Otter was at the helm during the peak of the Great Recession and it was his administration that oversaw the cutting of the state budget, record unemployment, and a boom in the number of people using government assistance.Otter spoke with StateImpact Idaho back in 2012 about that recession and its lasting impact on Idaho's workforce.Governor Otter: Every Generation Deals with Joblessness and We Live Through ItA Brief BiographyOtter, a Republican, is the longest serving lieutenant governor of Idaho, his tenure spanned from 1987-2000. In 2000 he was then elected to the United States Congress and served until 2006.According to the Washington Post, Otter voted with his party most of the time, 86 percent, but has been known to have an independent streak on some issues.“He was among three Republicans in the House to vote against the USA Patriot Act in 2001 and he later sponsored a bill to repeal parts of it. But independent streaks are sometimes tolerated in a state that would rather not be told what to do by the federal government.” - William Yardley, New York TimesOtter was born on May 3, 1942 in Caldwell, Idaho. He attended St. Teresa’s Academy in Boise and graduated from Boise Junior College (now Boise State University) with a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science in 1967.After college, Otter joined the Idaho National Guard and served in the 116th Armored Calvary until 1973.Butch Otter is married to his second wife, Lori. He has four children and several grandchildren.

Otter Leads Balukoff By 24 Points In Latest Poll For Idaho Governor

The latest poll on Idaho's gubernatorial race shows two-term incumbent Republican C.L. "Butch" Otter leading Democrat A.J. Balukoff by 24 percentage points.

The CBS/New York Times/YouGov poll released Oct. 1 shows 57 percent of respondents said they favor Otter.

The poll surveyed 594 Idahoans between Sept. 20-Oct. 1. In each demographic breakdown available, Otter had a sizeable lead.

Late Friday, Otter and Balukoff made public their latest campaign finance reports.

Balukoff has raised $1.81 million in the four-month reporting period. He has $52,467 available. Idaho Education News points out Balukoff has contributed nearly 88 percent of his own money to his campaign.

Gov. Otter, meanwhile, raised $613,697 during the campaign finance reporting period. He still has $588,852 available to spend.

A number of Otter’s biggest contributions came from out-of-state interests and political action committees. That list includes Education Networks of America, the Nashville, Tenn. company that holds controversial contracts to install broadband and WiFi into Idaho schools. ENA contributed $5,000 to Otter. Also noteworthy: a $5,000 contribution from Anheuser-Busch, which supported state Sen. Russ Fulcher in the GOP gubernatorial primary; $5,000 from Dallas-based business mogul T. Boone Pickens; $5,000 from pharmaceutical firm Pfizer Inc.; and $2,500 from the National Rifle Association’s PAC. - Idaho Education News

Idaho Education News reports Otter's donors also include more than 20 state lawmakers.

Find Emilie Ritter Saunders on Twitter @emiliersaunders

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