John Bujak says he's no spoiler, running to win governor's race

Posted by Dan Popkey on July 11, 2014 

Former Canyon County Prosecutor John Bujak served as his own attorney, winning acquittals in three trials and hung juries in two others.misusing public funds.

KATHERINE JONES — kjones@idahostatesman.com Buy Photo

The Libertarian nominee cites his legal victories over the 'political machine.'

Former Canyon County Prosecutor John Bujak says his appeal to younger and independent voters means he can make history and become the first third-party candidate elected governor in Idaho history.

The Libertarian nominee responded to a story in the Washington Post this week about North Carolina Libertarian Senate candidate Sean Haugh, who is polling over 10 percent and may make the difference in a tight race.

Asked whether he may draw enough votes to put Democrat A.J. Balukoff over Gov. Butch Otter, Bujak said he's not in the race as a spoiler.

"I represented myself through five criminal trials in the last three years," Bujak said in an email. "The establishment didn’t expect me to win, but I did thanks to the voice of the people who served on my juries. The establishment doesn’t expect me to win the governor’s race either. Come November, I guess we will see what the people of Idaho have to say about that."

Charged with fraud and theft, Bujak has been acquitted three times. Two other juries were unable to reach a verdict. After his most recent acquittal in federal court in May, Bujak said, "I can't help but believe it's been vetting me for something bigger. I'm thinking the governor's race is it."

Bujak told the Statesman this week, "The truth is there will be the Republican zombies who come out and vote 'R”'and the Democratic zombies who will come out and vote 'D,' but the independent voters (including the Millenials, Gen X’ers and even some of the former zombies on both sides of the aisle) want something new."

Here's the full email exchange

Statesman: Do you see yourself as drawing enough votes from Otter to give Balukoff a better chance -- something the story explores related to US Senate races?

Bujak:

The gubernatorial race is going to be interesting. Idaho has traditionally been a Republican stronghold, but voters are starting to realize that there are problems with the traditional two-party system. People are starting to understand that the Republicans and Democrats are both beholden to party politics on a national level as well as big money contributors and insiders. Whether people elect a Republican or a Democrat they are essentially getting the same political dynamic with a different nametag.

Add to the mix the fact that:

(1) the Republican party in Idaho is currently imploding. How can the Republicans lead Idaho if they cannot even organize and lead their own political party?

(2) Idaho has more registered “independent voters” (i.e. unaffiliated, Constitutional & Libertarian voters) than Republicans and Democrats combined;

(3) Idaho has a large number of disenfranchised Millennials and Gen X’ers who have not traditionally registered to vote because they have no hope that their vote will make a difference based upon the choices at the polls.

Now enter John Bujak. I am a former Republican and Navy veteran who was marginalized and prosecuted by the political machine for thinking outside the box and not playing by their rules. I have a history of taking on the political establishment and winning. I am younger than the other candidates and have fresh ideas with a platform built around small, efficient government and the protection of individuals freedoms and rights. That message has resonated with Republicans, Democrats, independent voters as well as the Millenials and Gen X’ers who see me as a reason to get out, register and vote. The truth is there will be the Republican zombies who come out and vote “R” and the Democratic zombies who will come out and vote “D,” but the independent voters (including the Millenials, Gen X’ers and even some of the former zombies on both sides of the aisle) want something new.

Does that make me a “spoiler?” I don’t think so. I bring a vision of hope for people who want something other than politics as usual in Idaho. What will that mean from a practical perspective come election time? Time will tell, but I did not enter the race to lose or act as a “spoiler.” I represented myself through five criminal trials in the last three years. The establishment didn’t expect me to win, but I did thanks to the voice of the people who served on my juries. The establishment doesn’t expect me to win the governor’s race either. Come November, I guess we will see what the people of Idaho have to say about that.

Idaho Statesman is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere in the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.

Commenting FAQs | Terms of Service