House candidate with criminal conviction faces write-in challenger

jsowell@idahostatesman.comApril 12, 2014 

Brian Bishop

A Caldwell attorney has mounted a write-in campaign for an Idaho House seat after it was revealed the lone Republican in the District 10B seat was arrested in 2009 after allegedly pushing and shoving his then-wife.

Brian Bishop, 39, announced Saturday he will seek the Republican nomination for the seat held by retiring Republican Rep. Darrell Bolz. Bolz, 70, has served in the Legislature since 2001.

The Press-Tribune in Nampa this week revealed that candidate Greg Chaney was charged with domestic battery in the presence of a child after allegedly pushing and shoving the woman in the master bedroom, hallway and kitchen during an incident that took place Jan. 31, 2009. Chaney was also charged with destruction of a telecommunication line or instrument, false imprisonment, and malicious injury to property.

The destruction charge stemmed from Chaney forcefully taking his then-wife's cell phone from her when she tried to call 911, the Press-Tribune reported. The woman injured her finger and the incident was witnessed by the couple's four children.

Chaney also threatened to kill himself in front of his family with a steak knife if his then-wife threatened to leave.

The domestic battery charge was later amended to disturbing the peace. Chaney pleaded guilty to that charge and malicious injury to property in exchange for the other charges being dismissed. He served three days in jail.

Chaney, 32, who is running on a platform of family values and fiscal responsibility, said he turned to God and his family following his troubles and has worked to improve his life.

Bishop said he plans to run on his background and his values and said he doesn't plan to make Chaney's troubles the focus of his campaign.

"I just wanted to give people in the district a choice," Bishop said Saturday.

Bishop grew up in the Nampa area and graduated from Vallivue High School. He earned a bachelor's degree from Brigham Young University, a law degree from Harvard Law School and a master's degree in international relations from Tufts University outside Boston.

He has worked for law firms in London and New York. He currently has a private practice in Caldwell. He previously on the board of directors for the Heritage Community Charter School and as a community member for the Press-Tribune's editorial board.

He and his wife Kamber have four children.

"While I strongly favor limited government, I also believe that government must be outstanding in what it does, especially education. I believe my professional and educational experience, together with my record of involvement in the community, make me the best candidate to represent District 10B," Bishop said in a written statement.

Chaney was not immediately available Saturday evening for comment.

Leif Skyving, a member of the Caldwell School board, is running unopposed in the Democratic primary. Libertarian Eugene Smith and independent Gordon Counsil are also unopposed.

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