Idaho GOP Chairman Steps Down, New Acting Chair in Place

Feb. 19, 2019

Boise – Jonathan Parker yesterday thanked the Idaho Republican State Central Committee for the opportunity to serve as state party chairman and notified them he was stepping down.

Pursuant to party rules, Jennifer Locke of Hayden will assume the role of acting chair until a replacement is elected at the party’s summer meeting to fill out the remainder of the two-year term.

“Serving as your Chairman, while maintaining a full-time job and being a fully engaged father has been harder than I imagined,” wrote Parker, “so much so that I have reluctantly decided that I should no longer continue to serve as Chairman of the Idaho Republican Party so that I can focus on the priorities I place above all others.” A full copy of his letter is below.

Parker was elected as Chairman in July 2017 and reelected in June 2018.

Locke said, “We thank Jonathan Parker for his leadership and service. My primary concerns are a smooth transition and assuring that we have a successful summer meeting. I look forward to working with Governor Little and all of our elected officials and party leaders to continue to grow the Idaho Republican Party.”

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Below is the text of the letter sent yesterday, Monday, Feb. 18, from former Idaho State Republican Party Chairman Jonathan Parker to state party leadership:

Dear Idaho State Republican Leadership:

A little over a year and a half ago, you entrusted me with being Chairman of the Idaho Republican Party. I was honored that so many of you would ask me to take on this role that I did not seek but you believed I was the right person to lead us into the critical 2018 election. As you may recall, building a family with my wife Kelly has always been my top priority and in fact, kept me from attending the State Central Committee meeting where I was elected in 2017.

Last year, Kelly and I were blessed that Presley came into our lives as our beloved daughter. Serving as your Chairman, while maintaining a full-time job and being a fully engaged Father has been harder than I imagined, so much so that I have reluctantly decided that I should no longer continue to serve as Chairman of the Idaho Republican Party so that I can focus on the priorities I place above all others.

Serving as your Chairman has been an honor and together we accomplished many great things. While the 2018 elections were rough in many other states, here in Idaho we stopped the blue wave dead in its tracks. We elected Brad Little – Governor, Russ Fulcher – Congressman, Janice McGeachin – Lt. Governor, and Julie Ellsworth – Treasurer. We also reelected Mike Simpson – Congressman, Lawerence Denney – Secretary of State, Brandon Woolf – Controller, Lawrence Wasden – Attorney General and Sherri Ybarra – Superintendent of Public Instruction and maintained super-majorities in the Legislature.

I notified First-Vice Chair Jennifer Locke of my decision to step down over the weekend, and according to our rules, our first will serve as interim Chairman until the summer meeting when the state central committee will choose a new Chairman for the remainder of the term. I fully pledge to you that I stand ready to assist Chair Locke to make sure this transition is seamless and that the party continues to thrive.

I’m forever grateful to you, my Republican family, for the love, friendship and support you have shown me over the many years we’ve worked so hard to build our Idaho Republican Party. Thank you for your understanding and support of my decision to place the priorities of my family first. I trust that you know that it was not one that I arrived at lightly.

On this holiday, as we reflect on the legacy of Abraham Lincoln, the father of our party, and all our Presidents, let’s pledge to move forward together and continue to build our proud Party and strive to keep Idaho what America was meant to be.

Sincerely,

Jonathan Parker
Chairman, Idaho Republican Party

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