Ure wants a Senate seat
March 8, 2006
Rep. David Ure, the popular Republican legislator from Kamas, wants to replace retiring Sen. Beverly Evans, a political move that, if he wins, will bring a Summit County presence to the Statehouse’s upper chamber.
Evans, a Republican, lives in Altamont and represents a large swath of Summit County, including the West Side. No senators currently hail from Summit County. Allen Christensen, a Republican from North Ogden, holds the other Senate seat representing Summit County. His seat is not on the 2006 ballot.
Ure, a political ally of Evans, said he prefers the Senate to another term in the House, noting that senators hold more powers than representatives.
"I have been in the House long enough," Ure, a seven-term representative, said.
Ure said the Senate is appealing because senators serve four-year terms rather than the two-year terms of representatives. He said, with fewer senators, a smaller number of votes are needed for bills to pass and that senators hold the power to confirm gubernatorial appointments, like judges, the state’s Transportation Commission and the state’s Board of Regents.
"If you’re trying to get a bill passed, you have to convince another 14 people," he said about the Senate, comparing it to the 37 votes needed in the House.
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The Senate seat, in District 26, encompasses a sprawling tract of the state. It includes parts of Daggett, Duchesne, Summit, Uintah and Wasatch counties. The district partially overlaps with House District 53, the seat Ure holds.
He has had little difficulty fending off Democratic challenges in the House district, which stretches over portions of Rich, Morgan, Summit, Wasatch and Daggett counties. Ure has especially proven popular in the more rural parts of the House district and voters in those areas have outnumbered the more liberal people who live in the Park City area.
Ure acknowledges that his tenure in the House has been long and that a new legislator is needed for the district. He said there are Republicans and Democrats who could be superior to him in the House but he did not mention names.
"My time has been up," he said. "There are numerous people who can do a better job than me."
Ure expects two or three Republicans to challenge him for the party’s nomination and predicts that the Democrats will field a formidable opponent since the incumbent is not seeking re-election. He wants Evans to endorse him.
Ure said his campaign will be more difficult than his recent House bids because the district is much larger and that the voters in parts of the district are not familiar with his legislative history.
"It’s called knocking on doors. I have to. People don’t know who I am," he said about his campaign strategy.
Ure, a dairy farmer, is 54 years old and is a fourth-generation Kamas resident. Last week, he hinted that he might seek a spot on the Summit County Commission and he told The Park Record that "there are many doors starting to open up." It was unclear then, however, that he was eyeing the Senate seat.
Ure’s opponents in past House elections have tried to label him as a legislator with links to big business and someone who did not represent the wishes of lots of his constituents, especially those in Summit County, where his popularity did not match the level of other counties in his district.
His 2000 campaign was especially brutal as Snyderville Basin Democrat Becky Richards hammered at Ure over his Questar-friendly legislation, which was widely rebuked.
He has twice run unsuccessfully to become the speaker of the House and has served as the House’s majority whip.
On Tuesday, Mel Brown, a former speaker of the House, filed papers to run as a Republican for Ure’s seat in House District 53. He is from Coalville.