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Debunking 2022 Idaho Primary Election loss misinformation

It only took a matter of hours before a few of those who lost Tuesday's GOP Primary Election to start sending out excuses for that loss, mostly blaming Democrats.

BOISE, Idaho —

It took only a matter of hours before a few of those who lost last night's GOP Primary Election to start sending out excuses for that loss, mostly blaming Democrats.

Starting with Brandon Durst, who finished second to Debbie Critchfield in the State Superintendent race. Durst tweeted Wednesday morning, at 3:28 A.M., “At least 20k liberals disrupted the primary and many establishment candidates encouraged them. There is no honor in victory when you need the other team to get you across the finish line.” 

Which is rich coming from someone who crossed over from the Democratic side of the aisle to the Republican side. Durst served in the Idaho legislature from 2006 to 2013 as a democrat. Then, within the last few years, changed his affiliation and crossed over to run as a Republican. 

The sentiment of sabotage from the other side was reiterated by Lt. Governor Janice McGeachin in a Facebook post Wednesday morning. 

“Last night, Idahoans showed Brad that he does not have a mandate. Brad Little barely managed a majority even with tens of thousands of Democrats and liberals infiltrating the Republican Primary to support him,” McGeachin said. 

Not having a mandate is something the Lt. Governor might be familiar with since she only received 29% of the votes in her 2018 primary election. 

However, we want to focus on what McGeachin said about “tens of thousands of Democrats and liberals infiltrating the republican primary.” 

We reached out to Chad Houck, the current deputy secretary of State to ask if Democrats were disrupting the Republican primary. 

We have talked about this before, here is what we learned today with some updated numbers. 

There was a bump in about 20 thousand registered Republican voters before the primary election. Prior to the early-voting period, 3,400 Democrats switched statewide and six thousand unaffiliated voters decided to lean Republican. 

According to the Secretary of State's office, when early voting started on May 2, there were about 550,000 registered Republicans and about 300,000 unaffiliated voters. 

As of Monday, so not including numbers from the day of Tuesday’s election, the number of registered republicans jumped to about 570 thousand, and unaffiliated numbers dropped from about 300 thousand to about 279 thousand, which is about a 20-thousand voter shift in about two weeks, but it was not coming from the democratic side. 

Houck told us the number of registered democrats barely moved, maybe by 100 voters. 

Besides, these are the rules put in place by Idaho's Republican-majority legislature. Rules that have only been in place for the last 10 years. 

If the day after the primary is supposed to be about unity, at least those who lost seemed to have found common ground, even though it isn't exactly solid ground.

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