(KCPW News) Democratic Congressman Jim Matheson’s announcement that he will run for a sixth term in the House of Representatives, and not Governor, appears to significantly increase the odds that Salt Lake County Mayor Peter Corroon will run instead. Matheson says he likes Corroon’s odds of winning that job.
“I like Peter. I think he’s a real capable guy. He’s a quality person, quality candidate, and he’s a proven winner,” he told KCPW.
As for why he’s not running himself, Matheson says it’s important for Utah to have a voice on the House Energy and Commerce Committee, where he currently serves. This year, the committee has considered major cap-and-trade and healthcare legislation.
Utah Democratic Party Chairman Wayne Holland says there’s no doubt that Matheson’s announcement is shifting momentum within the party to Mayor Corroon. As for the Republican candidate that Corroon would be running against, Holland doesn’t think it’s a done deal that Lt. Governor Gary Herbert will get the nomination.
“I don’t think the Lieutenant Governor’s going to get a free ride here for the nomination. I think he’s going to get some challengers. I think it’s a 50/50 shot that we will not be opposing Gary Herbert,” said Holland.
One of Herbert’s potential challengers took his name out of the race today. Salt Lake Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Lane Beattie says he will not run for Governor in 2010.