Misty Snow plans to challenge Rep. Chris Stewart in 2018

Democrat Misty Snow is launching another run at Congress next year. This time she’s planning on challenging Rep. Chris Stewart in Utah’s 2nd Congressional District.

Snow filed a statement of candidacy for the 2nd Congressional District with the Federal Election Commission on April 2.

Snow surprisingly won the Democratic nomination for U.S. Senate in 2016 over Jonathan Swinton after jumping into the race at the last minute. She ended up losing that race to Sen. Mike Lee by 41-points. Snow was one of the first transgender candidates to win a major party’s nomination for Congress. She was also the first major party LGBT nominee for a statewide office in Utah.

In her lone debate against Sen. Lee, Snow exceeded expectations but couldn’t gain any traction against the freshman Senator.

“People have been asking for months if I’m going to run again,” said Snow. “

Snow says she is getting into the race now because the 2018 electoral season is already underway.

“I wanted to wait, but we’re seeing a number of candidates already declare for the U.S. Senate race next year. I need to get in ahead of everyone else to start fundraising and reduce the number of potential challengers I might face,” she said.

Snow says her run for Senate last year has given her a good foundation fo build on for this year. Plus, she learned some hard lessons in 2016 that should help her next year.

“I learned that statewide races for Democrats in Utah are very hard,” she says with a laugh. “Turning voters out will be the biggest challenge. I did pretty well for a first-time candidate. I got nearly the same number of votes that (Democrat) Scott Howell did in 2012, but I was a trans candidate running on a progressive platform. I just need to start earlier and work hard.

Snow has another uphill climb against the three-term congressman. Stewart easily won his last three elections by 29, 28 and 28 points.

In the 2016 Senate election, Snow’s fundraising was dwarfed by Lee by a factor of 76-1. Lee raised $5.8 million to just $78,000 for Snow. She’ll need to step up her fundraising game in 2018 as well. Stewart raised $911,000 while his Democratic opponent, Charlene Albarran pulled in $586,000. However, most of Albarran’s campaign money came from self-funding.

20170412 Snow Candidacy Statement