PRIEST RIVER — Republican candidate for Congress, Russ Fulcher, came to Priest River on a hot Timber Days parade day and brought revellers welcome relief: free, cold bottles of water. When he gets to D.C., though, he plans on turning up the heat -- on the federal government.
Job one is to “right-size control between the federal government and the state,” he said. Right now, locals and the state have to react to whatever Washington D.C. says. Fulcher explained that his aim is to decrease the inflence and control of the federal government and return power to the people.
“If you put decision making authority in the hands of locals, it tends to work out better,” he said.
Specifically, Fulcher spokes of reducing regulations regarding natural resources, working to improve access to federal lands, and shredding red tape that he said restricts small businesses.
Fulcher spent a 24-year career in the technology industry before serving a decade as a state senator and getting into commercial real estate. “The red tape to open a business is off the charts,” he said. “I know how cumbersome that is.”
Fulcher hails from Meridian, but said he had been warmly received in North Idaho.
“It couldn’t have gone better. We’ve been received very well.” Fulcher attributed voter affinity here to the shared, conservative mindset he and many North Idahoans possess. He said he also feels good about his prospects in Ada and Canyon Counties, which are his home base and Idaho’s two largest counties by population. Currently, the only other declared candidates for the Republican nomination to succeed outgoing Rep. Raul Labrador are former Lt. Gov. David Leroy, who served from 1983-1987, and Bonners Ferry author Michael Snyder.