SANDPOINT — After serving in the Idaho Legislature for over 20 years, Sen. Shawn Keough has decided it’s time to step down.
The longtime Republican legislator said she announced the decision now to give voters and citizens in District 1 would have plenty of time to learn about the candidates who will be stepping forward to try to fill the seat.
Sen. Keough’s term of office ends in November 2018. The primary election is in May 2018.
“Words cannot express what an incredible honor it is for me to serve the citizens of our area in the Idaho State Senate,” Keough said.
Over her 21 years — 22 upon completion of her term — Keough said she has been privileged to represent the people of the area, work for solutions to the issues the region faces and to assist hundreds of constituents to resolve their challenges with the state government.
“I’ve been proud of working with fellow area legislators over the years to get road projects built and others moved forward, secure additional funding for our schools, extend high speed internet into our high schools, provide increased opportunities for higher education right here at home, and many other items that have made our government run better and assisted our citizens to have opportunities to prosper,” she added. “I sincerely thank the people of legislative District 1 for the opportunity to be a public servant.”
While she is announcing her plans not to run now, Keough said she will continue to work for her constituents until she walks out the door on her last day.
“I intend to continue to fulfill my responsibilities for our district right up to and through the very last day of my term which ends in November 2018,” Keough said. “I felt that given the many political campaigns that have already begun for the May 2018 primary, our citizens deserved time to properly interview and get to know those who will step up to run for this position.”
In announcing her decision, Keough also endorsed Jim Woodward to be her replacement as the district’s state senator.
“Jim is a second-generation resident of our area, attended our public schools, graduated from the University of Idaho and served our country in the United States Navy,” Keough said. “Jim is a small business owner, his wife, Brenda, teaches in our public schools and they are raising their family here. Jim’s deep roots in our area and his commitment to our North Idaho values coupled with his background and service to our country give him the experience needed to represent us in the Idaho State Senate. I support Jim 100 percent and hope you will join me in voting to send him to represent us in Boise.”