Rep. Bill Sali wrapped up his meeting with the Statesman editorial board — and challenger Matt Salisbury — with a quip for his opponent.
"Don't worry," Sali told Salisbury, "they're going to endorse you."
Turns out we couldn't endorse either candidate in the 1st Congressional District race (click here for this morning's editorial).
Some readers will think we copped out. I see it a little bit differently.
We did not endorse Sali in the 2006 Republican primary or the general election, and frankly, our board didn't see much in the past 16 months to change our mind. In Salisbuury, we saw a newcomer who just doesn't seem ready for the challenges of filling one of Idaho's two seats in the House of Representatives.
We were left to choose between an incumbent with whom we frequently disagree, or a challenger who just doesn't seem ready for the job. Given the choices, I think a non-endorsement is more honest with readers.
A footnote: Sali spokesman Wayne Hoffman took issue with a phrase in this morning's editorial. In describing an appropriations bill, containing money for highway projects in the 1st District, I said that Sali had neglected to mention his no vote on the bill.
Sali mentioned the no vote in the last paragraph of a press release touting the highway projects; the press release's headline reads: "HOUSE APPROVES CONGRESSMAN SALI’S FUNDING FOR U.S. 95 WIDENING." Click here to read the release.