Washington • A tea party activist will try to unseat Rep. Rob Bishop, launching her bid this week with a slogan playing off an American classic: "Send Mrs. Smith to Washington."
Wanship native Jacqueline Smith said she feels compelled to run for office to protect the rights her family enjoys, even if she holds a poor view of Washington.
"I actually hate politics. I think it is an ugly arena to be in, but my liberty matters to me," she said, calling Congress "a den of vipers."
Smith, who started the STAR Forum, a Summit County tea party group, said voters would see some similarities between her positions and that of Bishop, a five-term incumbent representing the 1st Congressional District. But she also noted some differences. She said she would fight to immediately end the war in Afghanistan and co-sponsor legislation requiring a full audit of the Federal Reserve, positions advocated by Ron Paul, her favorite presidential candidate.
Bishop's support for the National Defense Authorization Act drove her into the race, Smith said. Some people, including Sen. Mike Lee, R-Utah, argue the legislation allows the government to indefinitely detain U.S. citizens suspected of supporting terrorist groups, while others like Bishop say it adds no new detention powers.
"Rob has taken great care to protect the rights of Americans and his record reflects that," said Katherine Lowe, Bishop's campaign manager. "The nice thing about Rob's work is that his efforts and goals don't change or get adjusted based on who may run against him."
Smith, a mother of five, owns a plumbing company with her husband. She serves as the secretary of the Summit County Republicans.
Rep. Jason Chaffetz, R-Utah, is now the only incumbent for federal office in Utah, who is not facing a tea party-fueled challenge.