Paulette Jordan visits with voters in Bannock County

Paulette Jordan speaks with a reporter following her address to voters at a fundraiser | Sydney Jensen, KID NewsRadio

POCATELLO, Idaho — Paulette Jordan, candidate for Idaho governor, visited with voters at a fundraising picnic in Pocatello on Tuesday, August 14.

“[I appreciate] people who are now by fighting back for their Idaho knowing that it been taken a hostage by these corporations, and special interest and the establishments who have definitely attacked the people’s rights,” Paulette Jordan told KID NewsRadio. “You know, our rights as citizens need to be a upheld and promoted.”

As the Democratic candidate for Idaho’s top seat, Jordan describes herself as a progressive conservative. Jordan said her stances on political issues like gun control and agriculture, combined with her beliefs on medicaid expansion and education reform, allow her to connect with  voters of different political leanings.

“Appealing to both the left and the right is certainly one of the strengths that we have in this campaign because we are definitely noticing a lot of Republicans who are very faithful to our message because they know that we all want the same things,” Jordan said. “We want to protect our public lands. We want to make sure that we’re not selling off any of our interests that belong to the state, that belong to everybody, every single citizen…we have definitely seen opportunities where we can grow rural transportation and real broadband access rather than hurting our local communities.”

Jordan said she doesn’t see herself as a one-party candidate and emphasized her goal of returning to an Idaho of the people rather than corporations. During her speech, Jordan took a swipe at her opponent Brad Little by telling attendees her campaign wouldn’t allow special interests to dictate their bid for the governor’s seat or receive funding from any, “dark, corporate money.”

“The plan…is wholly inclusive to those who are Independent or Libertarian, Republican and Democrat,” Jordan said. “So, you have a leader that it’s by and above all not about the corporations, but about the people and saying when it comes down to establishments, I’m well above the party system because I come from Idaho and I was raised by elders who are more loyal to the land of the people than they are any corporation or special interest group.”

Part of that plan includes reforming Idaho’s healthcare system. Expanding Medicaid, Jordan said, is a largely misunderstood effort and stems from her belief about an individual’s right to access healthcare and how Idaho pays for that.

Well, above what you see with the ACA, the Affordable Care Act, the state has an option to opt in or not and as governor, I want to make sure that we are covering every single Idahoan,” Jordan said. “So, I believe healthcare care is a right while others see it as more of a privilege. It can be seen in both ways, sure. But, overall you want to make sure that you’re saving costs. I find it to be far more fiscally efficient and allows us at the local level to be more conservative with our taxpaying dollars because we’re not paying twice into the system at the local level and into the state fund and into the federal budget.”

Helping Idahoans understand that view requires better packaging the message, Jordan said.

It has a very bad rap and I think that the message needs to be cleaner and more true to the source of to what that really means for Idaho,” Jordan said.

In the months leading up to the primary election in November, Jordan said she hopes to continue to communicate that message and her vision for Idaho to voters.

People need up believe in their government” Jordan said. “They need to know that their government is there to work for them, and I think when you have the right actors in place that are truly sincere and loyal to the voice of the people, then you have a real leader in place that will help bring the system back to where it needs to be.”