Providence resident Chuck Bateman is formally announcing his candidacy to challenge fellow Republican District 5 Representative Curt Webb in the upcoming election. Independence Caucus representative Michelle King says she and other caucus members approached Bateman and asked him to run, but clarifies that the Independence Caucus as a group has not formally endorsed Bateman. Bateman will be running as a Republican and party chairman David James says the Independence Caucus, the Tea Party Coalition and other groups are not formally part of the Republican Party but are active citizens who want to be involved. “And it’s great to have our elected officials responsive to the citizens because if we aren’t involved, if we aren’t talking to our elected officials they kind of wander off,” James says. “Sometimes they wander off in areas that we don’t like that well and then we have to wake up, grab them by the lapels, pull them back into line to where we think they ought to be and they respond and do their job well.” James says Republican incumbent U.S. Senator Bob Bennett has several conservative challengers but so far Congressman Rob Bishop has none.
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