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The dome of the Idaho Capitol in Boise.

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This just in from the House Republican Caucus: "Speaker of the House Scott Bedke will make a new appointment to the Idaho’s Citizen Commission for Reapportionment, which is responsible for drawing district boundaries for legislative and congressional elections. This comes after the initial appointee, John Simpson, removed his name from consideration."

“Recently, I was asked to serve on the apportionment committee for the State of Idaho,” said Mr. Simpson. “During the interview I was asked if I was a registered lobbyist and I responded that I was not. I had terminated that registration in June but was unaware that Idaho law required appointees to be free of lobby registration for at least a year. As such, it is clear that my registration this year makes me ineligible to serve. While I’m disappointed, and must obviously remove my name from consideration, thank you, Mr. Speaker for the opportunity. I’m sorry I don’t meet the eligibility requirements for this particular task, but I always stand ready to serve our great state.”

"The Speaker is expected to make the new appointment soon."

Republicans this week announced their three initial appointees to the bipartisan citizens commission that will be responsible for drawing new legislative and congressional district lines; Democrats haven't yet announced their appointees. The other two announced this week are former longtime Senate Majority Leader Bart Davis, R-Idaho Falls, appointed by Senate President Pro Tem Chuck Winder; and former state Rep. Eric Redman, R-Athol, appointed by state Republican Party Chair Tom Luna.

Betsy Z. Russell is the Boise bureau chief and state capitol reporter for the Idaho Press and Adams Publishing Group. Follow her on Twitter at @BetsyZRussell.

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