“We’re definitely leaning toward it at this point,” he said.
Shepherd’s name has popped up as a possible candidate for the post to be vacated by U.S. Rep. Rob Bishop. Bishop, a Republican, is in his ninth term, but won’t be seeking reelection next year, and many have expressed interest in the Northern Utah posting, with three already saying they plan to vie for the seat.
Now with his comments Wednesday to the Standard-Examiner, Shepherd publicly joins the mix of possible candidates. He said a formal announcement will be coming, whether he decides to run or not.
“Thinking very heavily about it ... We’re weighing out the options,” he said.
Likely support his candidacy can muster weighs in his calculations as well as the ability raise funds needed to wage a serious bid.
“It’s an expensive race. It’s a major commitment,” said Shepherd, a real estate agent who comes up for reelection as Clearfield mayor in 2021. “It’s making sure that we have the support, that it’s the right thing for me and my family at this time.”
Two GOPers have already announced plans to run and filed their candidacies with the Federal Election Commission, Kaysville Mayor Katie Witt and Morgan County Councilwoman Tina Cannon. Republican Cory Green, a consultant and trucker from Syracuse, also says he’ll run.
Shepherd, a Republican, noted his many years of service at the municipal level, more than 20. He served six years on the Clearfield City Council before his election as mayor in 2013 and nine additional years on the Clearfield Planning Commission.
Factoring in his interest in running, Shepherd said, is giving voice to local and grassroots concerns, as he’s done as mayor and leader in Clearfield. That point of view, he said, is lacking in Washington, D.C. He singled out the need for a federal infrastructure bill.
Others who have said they’re thinking about running include Box Elder County Commissioner Stan Summers, Davis County Commissioner Bob Stevenson, Utah Rep. Stephen Handy and businessman Bruce Hough, among others. Additional names include Kerry Gibson, the Utah Department of Agriculture and Food commissioner, and Scott Simpson, head of the Utah Credit Union Association.