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The Idaho Press partnered with the League of Women Voters to conduct candidate surveys for the May 19 primary. You may also search for your ballot items by address, at vote411.org. Candidates were responsible for grammar and spelling, and answers were limited to 500 characters.  

Senate District 12

Uncontested primaries:

  • Democrat: Chelle Gluch, Nampa
  • Republican: Todd Lakey, Nampa

(No survey responses. Candidates will face each other in the November general election.)

House Seat 12A

Uncontested primaries:

Hartwell Pat Day.jpg

Patricia Day Hartwell

Democrat: Pat Day Hartwell, Nampa

  • Campaign Phone: (208) 681-0480
Bruce Skaug

Bruce Skaug

Republican: Bruce D. Skaug, Nampa

  • Campaign Phone: (208) 466-0030
  • Facebook page: Bruce D Skaug
  • Campaign Facebook: Skaug for Idaho

(Candidates will face each other in the November general election.)

Q: 1. What do you hope to accomplish if elected?

Pat Day Hartwell: I was born and raised on a Treasure Valley dairy farm. Medical issues are number one to me. The Legislature must also figure out how to get schools back on track. With businesses closed, and people laid off our State is going to be low on tax revenue. Our citizens need to get back to work and they need a living wage when they do. Our businesses need to reopen and grow. We need to protect our public lands, wildlife and fisheries. We must Add the Words.

Bruce D. Skaug: If elected, I will endeavor to prevent any increase in taxes and will work to provide tax relief for homeowners. I will seek to promote free market alternatives and smaller government wherever practical and possible. I will try to get our public universities and colleges to focus on traditional education, rather than the promotion of ideologies. I will only support legislation that is within the boundaries of the U.S. Constitution/Bill of Rights and the Idaho Constitution.

Q: 2. What experience has prepared you for this office?

Pat Day Hartwell: I have a B.A. in Criminal Justice and for 30 years I was a Crime Victim’s Rights’ Advocate setting up rape crisis hotlines and being a domestic violence advocate. In 1979, 12 programs around the State formed an organization and I was President. We worked to pass laws to aid crime victims including establishing the Idaho Council on Domestic Violence in 1984 which funded shelters. I was elected Chair. We gained passage of Idaho’s Constitutional Amendment to guarantee Crime Victim’s Rights.

Bruce D. Skaug: I have served as an Ada County Deputy Prosecutor as a criminal case trial attorney. I have owned and operated a civil legal practice since 1992 that currently has approximately 20 employees.

Q: 3. What changes, if any, would you support related to state funding of public education?

Pat Day Hartwell: The State legislature has a Constitutional mandate to provide a thorough, adequate education. The State must develop novel funding sources and stop passing this cost on to County property taxes. I would like to find methods to enable students to go on for advanced education without having to going into debt. I support free public pre-K.

Bruce D. Skaug: - no response -

Q: 4. What do you see as Idaho's prison system's most important needs and and how would you address those?

Pat Day Hartwell: We must continue criminal justice reform. We spend way too much on jails and prisons and incarcerating nonviolent offenders. I support spending less on new prisons and jails, and more on half-way houses and probation and parole officers as well as other early release programs and bring prisoners home from out-of-state. I will back legislation lessening or eliminating minimum sentencing for non-violent drug offenses.

Bruce D. Skaug: - no response -

Q: 5. What do you see as Idaho's most important healthcare system needs and how would you address those?

Pat Day Hartwell: I want to be a leader in the legislature to ensure everyone has the medical coverage they need. We need to attract more doctors. The last session did not address our citizen’s need’s as far as health care is concerned. I believe healthcare is a right. This pandemic has taught the importance of critical medical treatment and care for others. I support removing the religious exemption that allows parents to withhold critical medical treatment for their children.

Bruce D. Skaug: - no response -

Q: 6. What changes to income, sales and property tax policies would you support?

Pat Day Hartwell: It is time to remove the sales tax from groceries. I think that is one tax we can all agree on and it helps everyone. Those it helps the most are the low-income, who spend the funds immediately. They put the money back into our economy instantly. I think for year 2021, we might leave other taxes alone, but I have an open mind. My husband and I own a small farm so we certainly aren’t fans of taxes, but the government can’t run on air.

Bruce D. Skaug: - no response -

Q: 7. What measures do you support in updating Idaho's voting processes?

Pat Day Hartwell: I believe we need to continue voting by mail and we need to automatically register 18-year-olds on their birthdays. Ballots should be sent out to all registered voters. People shouldn’t have to request ballots. This would increase voting which I believe should be everyone’s goal.

Bruce D. Skaug: - no response -

Q: 8. What are the biggest transportation priorities in Idaho for the next 20 years, and how should the state prepare now to fund those projects?

Pat Day Hartwell: We need a better highway connecting South and North Idaho as well as to complete the widening of the freeway through Canyon County. Federal funds will be required. Although with gas prices declining, gas usage may go up enough to raise some extra income. Idaho is always behind on our road and bridge needs. We do need better and different public transportation in the Greater Treasure Valley including investigating light rail.

Bruce D. Skaug: - no response -

Q: 9. Do you support local option sales tax authority for all cities and counties?

Pat Day Hartwell: I am open to be convinced about this and interested in listening to pro-con arguments.

Bruce D. Skaug: - no response -

House Seat 12B

Republican primary:

Machele Hamilton

Machele Hamilton

Machele Hamilton, Nampa

Rep. Rick Youngblood

Rep. Rick Youngblood

Rick D Youngblood, Nampa

  • Campaign Phone: (208) 412-5107
  • Website: youngbloodforidaho.com
  • Facebook page: Idaho Representative Rick Youngblood

Q: 1. What do you hope to accomplish if elected?

Machele Hamilton: It is extremely important to me that Idaho continue to be on a conservative path, and not begin the slow erosion of the progressive socialist agenda. Idaho is seen by many progressive organizations as a target, a state that is content with our conservative values. They would like to change that from the ground up and will continue to chip away at us. We honor our traditional Christian values and we need to realize that they will continually be challenged.

Rick D Youngblood: Hope to continue serving my home state with the same kind of Conservative servant leadership values I have provided these past eight years. I currently serve as Co-Chairman of Joint Finance & Appropriations Committee and member of Transportation committee. I ask questions about our State Budgets whether some like it or not!

Q: 2. What experience has prepared you for this office?

Machele Hamilton: I have been a small business owner for 37 years. I have dealt with booming economies and grueling recessions. Over the years I have worn every hat there is: human resources, marketing, bookkeeping, purchasing, right up to actual production. It is important we have leadership that understands the value of a hard earned dollar, having had to make tough decisions and being personally responsible for those decisions.

Rick D Youngblood: Native Idahoan, 40 years of local community servant leadership in Canyon County, 30 years in banking and 10 years private sector.

Just competed my 4th term in the House of Representatives. Serve on State Credit Review Enhancement Committee and Governor appoiinted, Idaho Public Safety Communications Commission.

Q: 3. What changes, if any, would you support related to state funding of public education?

Machele Hamilton: I believe our schools are filled with hard working individuals, but the education system itself is broken. I believe in parental accountability, school discipline, and a back to the basics approach. Somewhere along the way our schools became daycare centers, social service hubs, and feeding stations. I also believe the money following the child is a valuable and equitable concept. Administrative bloat is also a problem, especially in higher education.

Rick D Youngblood: We have done an excellent job these past five years with increased teacher pay, minimum wage increase, and a new five year salary plan for the next five years. Education was our Governor’s priority these past two years and I stood firm with him. Our universities will figure it out, that if enrollement is down you better bring costs down.

Q: 4. What do you see as Idaho's prison system's most important needs and and how would you address those?

Machele Hamilton: Idaho has one of the highest recidivism rates in the nation, with more people in prison for parole and probation violations than any other state. How we deal with the technical violations is a step, but more important is support for those who are released. Help with the transition from an institution into a supervised form of freedom. More assistance with things like job training, job placement, or housing would seem to be more beneficial in the long run.

Rick D Youngblood: The challenge is folks in the prison system do not know normal, they were not raised normal. Anything we can do to teach them normal will keep recidivism down. Not for all but for most. Community Re-entry Centers are a great example of putting inmates who meet requirements to work. The program pays for itself and provides needed workers with very few challenges. The current IDOC Director has other similar ideas and they need supported.

Q: 5. What do you see as Idaho's most important healthcare system needs and how would you address those?

Machele Hamilton: I feel the most important healthcare issue is cost. Living in Canyon County, we do not have a shortage of physicians or clinics as other areas of the state may have. Answering as a candidate for District 12, an urban part of the state, I feel there are definite ways to lower costs. Requiring published price lists so comparisons can be made, allowing out of state insurers, reducing unnecessary mandated benefits, and restricting frivolous tort claims are just an example.

Rick D Youngblood: I have been working on these for several years. a) Continue to fully develop (particularly for rural communities) Telehealth care; b) Build on Value Based Care as opposed to Fee for Service, it is working; c) A fully functioning Data Management system using predictive analytics; d) Continue to develop AI processes.

Q: 6. What changes to income, sales and property tax policies would you support?

Machele Hamilton: The big buzz in Idaho right now is increasing property taxes. When the legislature capped homeowners’ exemptions at $100,000, residential property values continued to increase, leaving homeowners with a greater burden. I don’t think it is going to be a one facet fix, but rather a combination of solutions. Increasing the homeowner’s exemption, decreasing urban renewal districts, and addressing exempt properties. But realize, until we control spending, everything is just a tax burden shift.

Rick D Youngblood: All that makes sense. I will not purposely look at increasing any taxes but using existing tax dollars better is a great idea!

Q: 7. What measures do you support in updating Idaho's voting processes?

Machele Hamilton: I wholeheartedly agree with voter ID laws.In today’s world, where identification is required for the most mundane activities, it is disingenuous to claim otherwise. I also agree with in person voting, as voting should be a celebration, not a burden. I do have issue with so many school bond election days. The dates and frequency with which they can run skews the results in favor of the school districts.There were a couple of legislative bills this year to address this, but were held in committee.

Rick D Youngblood: Only those that can be secure if on-line with a strong means of verification! I believe that day will come. Otherwise our current process is good. We do need all Idahoans to VOTE!

Q: 8. What are the biggest transportation priorities in Idaho for the next 20 years, and how should the state prepare now to fund those projects?

Machele Hamilton: I believe transportation is one of the biggest issues we face. By the time current expansion projects are completed, more are necessary. The cost of transportation projects are tossed around with little or no meaning. We are told that a project will be $150 million, are we only question how we will fund that amount. We never question how we can reduce that amount, or why it is so much to start with. Solving our transportation issues will take an all hands on deck, out of the box approach.

Rick D Youngblood: WOW, the next twenty years. How about NOW!!! We need consistant funding sources which may require some current General Funding; and opportunity for more local funding decisions. However, not property tax increases. Sources do need to be around those using the local and state road

Q: 9. Do you support local option sales tax authority for all cities and counties?

Machele Hamilton: I feel that local option taxing authorities create a disadvantage for the small businesses working within them. A local option sales tax places a burden on those who are unable to travel. And those who are able to travel will choose to spend their money where they pay less taxes, placing an unfair advantage on businesses. We must break the cycle of always trying to figure out how to raise more money, and put our energy and efforts into ideas that decrease spending instead.

Rick D Youngblood: Yes, as I believe locals should make those decisions. Folks can always vote No, I know several legislators who are very good at it!

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