The U.S. could soon see its first Native American state governor in 2018.
Paulette Jordan, a member of the Coeur d’Alene Tribe and a Democrat in the Idaho House of Representatives, announced Dec. 7 that she will run for governor of Idaho. If elected, she will be the first female governor of the state, as well as the first Native American state governor. This move places her on a short list of Native American political candidates, alongside Lt. Governor of Alaska Byron Mallott and Larry Echo Hawk, who was a former Idaho State Representative and Attorney General for the state.
“Service is an inherent value in my family, from my ancestors on down to my sons, and they will carry that tradition forward in their lives,” Jordan said during her announcement. “I’m proud to be part of Idaho’s family.”
Jordan is currently in her second term as a Representative for District 5, where she serves on three committees: Environment, Energy and Technology, Resources and Conservation, and State Affairs. Before being in the state House of Representatives, the 38-year-old was a council woman for her tribe from 2009 to 2012.
According to the website Governing, Jordan already reported the major component of her platform.
“There will be zero tolerance for violence. There will be zero tolerance for sexual harassment and zero tolerance for drug abuse or child abuse. And there will be zero tolerance for discrimination in any form,” she said, adding that these intolerances are what the state is known for. “The system is so corrupt, we have to fix it. If we don’t do anything, nothing will improve.”
The Idaho primaries are set for May 15 and the gubernational election is set for Nov. 6. So far, Jordan is running against Democrats Troy Minton and A.J. Balukoff. Republican candidates include Tommy Ahlquist, Raul Labrador, HyDee Liebelt, Brad Little and Steve Pankey. Adam Phillips, Michael Richardson and John Thomas Wiechec have also announced their candidacy for the Independent ticket.