Lee Allen, publisher of the tax protest movement's Free Citizen newspaper, will be Merrill Cook's lieutenant governor candidate in Cook's independent run for the Utah governorship.

Cook made the announcement Monday, saying Allen is the best possible choice. "I looked at Republicans and Democrats, some people turned me down, others accepted, but I believe Lee is the best candidate," Cook said. Former Democratic Salt Lake County Commissioner Pete Kutulas was one who turned Cook down.Allen is a West Point graduate, a retired Army lieutenant colonel and a decorated Vietnam veteran who lives in Provo.

Cook said Allen shares his view on the important issues of the campaign, especially "giving the citizens of the state a major tax cut." Cook said if he and Allen are elected, it will be Allen's job to first trim the lieutenant governor's budget by half "The current lieutenant governor's office is a political dumping ground for the governor" and then oversee cutting state government by millions of dollars.

"The lieutenant governor's office spends $280,000. It's one of the greatest examples of waste in government. The office's only legal responsibility is signing people up for elections. But the office is stacked with political appointees who do political work for the governor. They have very little to do," Cook said.