Utah County Democrats heard a pitch Saturday from the only annouced competitor for Jake Garn's Senate seat: Kyle K. Kopitke.
Kopitke, 33, is running regardless of whether Garn decides to step down. Recognizing the challenge ahead of him, Kopitke declared early to get a head start.Kopitke, who lives in Salt Lake City, is a mass-file consultant for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. He was unsuccessful in his bid in 1990 for the Salt Lake County assessor's seat.
In an interview, he said he's building his Senate campaign on taking government out of the hands of special interests groups and giving it back to the people.
"We're giving the people of Utah a very clear choice," he said. "The people of Utah will know Kopitke is owned by the people, not special interest groups."
In keeping with that theme, Kopitke is not accepting money from lobbyists, political action committees, special interest groups or from out of state entities. He is also limiting contributions to $100 per household.
Kopitke says he is not running against Garn per se - "he's an American hero, he's been in outer space." In fact, Kopitke says he shares a bond with the senator. Garn donated a kidney to his daughter; Kopitke donated a kidney to his brother in 1976.
Rather, "our difference with him is . . . our vision of America. We're trying to take government back to the people of America."
In addition to representation in government, Kopitke is concerned about limiting political leaders to two terms in any elective office.