Smith heads GOP regional committee


Idaho Falls attorney Bryan Smith was elected chairman of Region 7 of the Idaho Republican Party on Thursday night.

Smith, who last month lost his primary challenge to Rep. Mike Simpson, defeated Richard Larsen for the post. Larsen is first vice-chairman of the Madison County Central Committee.

Smith will continue serving as first vice-chairman of the Bonneville Central Committee.

Region 7 consists of nine counties in eastern Idaho: Bonneville, Butte, Clark, Custer, Fremont, Jefferson, Lemhi, Madison and Teton.

As chairman, Smith will oversee the Lincoln Day Banquet, a party barbecue and other GOP fundraising events.

He also will appoint representatives to the state party’s rules and resolutions committees. Those committees, Smith said, deal with issues such as the structure of the presidential caucus and whether to hold open or closed primaries.

Smith, who ran hard to Simpson’s right, said he will continue to advocate for “conservative principles” in his new leadership post.

“I’m going to carry forward with the idea that we are going to promote the Republican platform and Republican ideals of smaller government, lower taxes and lower spending as we support Republicans who embody those ideals,” he said.

As a regional chairman, Smith also will gain a seat on the state Republican Executive Committee.

Madison County Republican Central Committee Chairwoman Elaine King said she looks forward to working with Smith.

“We’ll be happy to work with him and make things happen,” she said.