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Hubbel names Bruce Whalen as running mate

2018 gubernatorial candidates Lora Hubbel, right, and Terry LaFleur, attend a forum in 2017 at Dakota Wesleyan University in Mitchell. (Evan Hendershot / Republic)

The 2018 governor's race continued to take shape Wednesday, as former state legislator Lora Hubbel announced her running mate.

Bruce Whalen, who challenged then-U.S. Rep. Stephanie Herseth Sandlin in the 2006 midterm election, was announced as Hubbel's running mate. Hubbel, a Republican, is the first candidate to announce a candidate for lieutenant governor.

"It is a great honor for Lora to consider me as a running mate," Whalen said in a press release. "Lora knows of my advocacy for increasing quality of life on Indian Reservations and my views that federal policy induces a void of jurisdiction between state and federal governments with federally recognized tribes."

According to the release, Hubbel and Whalen have been friends since 2005. Whalen is from Pine Ridge and gained 97,864 votes in the 2006 election against Herseth Sandlin. He won 29.34 percent of the vote, losing to Herseth Sandlin's 69.09 percent.

Hubbel and Whalen will square off with Attorney General Marty Jackley, U.S. Rep. Kristi Noem and Terry LaFleur in the GOP primary.

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