By BRIAN WALKER
COEUR d'ALENE — Democrat Paulette Jordan hopes her rural North Idaho roots appeal to voters during the May 15 primary election in her run for governor.
Jordan, from Plummer, served two terms in District 5, Seat A in the House. On Friday morning she spoke to about 25 supporters at the Fine Brewed coffee shop in downtown Coeur d'Alene.
"This is not a typical campaign, but this is not a typical state," said Jordan, a 38-year-old Coeur d'Alene tribal member seeking to become Idaho's first female governor and the first Native American to serve as governor of any state. "Innovation is the name of my game. It's what gets you across the finish line."
The stop was part of her commitment to visit all 44 counties by the primary and kicked off the third day of her North Idaho tour. She also held meet-and-greet sessions in Kellogg and St. Maries on Friday.
Jordan said she believes name recognition with a grassroots campaign, not spending, will help her win the Democratic nomination for governor against A.J. Balukoff, Troy Minton and Peter Dill.
"We're climbing up the ladder," she said. "But I'm still not going negative (with the campaign), nor will I ever. Some people think they can buy this race while spending millions on TV ads."
Jordan believes Idaho voters have been swayed by rhetoric such as limited government, local control and lower taxes, but they later are disappointed to find out such promises are not fulfilled at the Legislature.
"These are direct attacks, and I don't take them lightly," she said, adding that's why it's critical for citizens to vote. "Enough is enough."
Jordan said movements calling for change ranging from women- to youth-led campaigns and unrest across the country are indications that it's time for leadership changes.
Jordan said that while she's trying to appeal to all ages of voters, she's also not trying to create another party and disenfranchise traditional Democratic voters.
"It's a very progressive (view), but we also want to represent the Democrat Party the best we can and not have people fall by the wayside," she said. "We're holding the door for the next generation of leaders. We have to mentor them. We want to make sure they are welcome and they can grow. It takes a whole family."
Jordan vowed to seek justice for all, Medicaid expansion, affordable health care, fairness in government and livable wages if she's elected. She served in the Idaho House from Dec. 1, 2014, to Feb. 14, 2018, and previously served on the Coeur d'Alene Tribal Council.
During her final term, she was the only Democrat serving in the Legislature from North Idaho.