My final story for The Associated Press bureau in Boise ran over the weekend and was about a former NFL player’s bid to unseat a Republican congressman in Idaho’s 1st Congressional District. I covered politics off and on while working for the AP in Idaho, but I wasn’t prepared at all for the barrage of political ads that awaited us in Des Moines when we arrived here a month ago.

Just one more week to go!

BOISE, Idaho (AP) — When Jimmy Farris first came back to Idaho to run for Congress, he was best known for his career as a professional football player. But beyond his home state’s borders, Farris is likely better known for races having nothing to do with politics, the federal deficit and defense spending.

To locals in Missoula, Mont., where Farris who starred on the University of Montana football team, they might remember the time he took a rancher’s bet to race a horse — and won. Farris also beams when he recounts a 2005 wager with famed NFL receiver Terrell Owens, who also finished second to Farris in a sprint while they were training together in Atlanta.

In the early days of his first political race, the 34-year-old Democrat from Lewiston says he imagined incorporating those feats into his campaign speeches or a television ad. The ad’s tagline, he says, would go something like this: “Jimmy Farris once ran against a horse and won. He ran against one of the world’s greatest athletes and won. Labrador you’re next.”

But now, with election just days away and very little money to spend on television spots, Farris is focused on sharpening the choice for voters in Idaho’s 1st Congressional District.

You can read the rest of my story here.


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