On March 8th, Idaho and Lewis county Republicans will have our county Republican party “Lincoln Day Dinner.” From now through the end of April, nearly every county Republican party across Idaho will hold a celebratory event honoring Abraham Lincoln, America’s 16th President and the first Rep…

The Mountain View School District Board of Trustees (the Board), has been approached by several members of our community asking questions about misleading information that is being circulated through our district by the Central Idaho Education Association (CIEA), the teacher’s union. The Boa…

The collection, protection and use of personally identifiable information by both the government and private companies deserves close scrutiny.  Americans are rightly concerned about the collection and use of their data, and how such data is secured and protected.

Throughout my professional career and as a state legislator, I’ve purposefully worked and advocated for positive change on behalf of all parties involved in the justice system in Idaho. Whether it’s serving on the Public Defense Reform and Justice Reinvestment committees or supporting the wo…

Idaho’s salmon and steelhead populations are in serious decline and our wild runs are teetering on the brink of extinction. Spend a few hours in Idaho’s river towns and you will see that fishing businesses and outfitters are taking a hit from the lack of steelhead, while our state leaders ar…

While Idaho had good intentions 26 years ago, it’s time we made a decision based on what we know today. Idaho’s mandatory minimums for drug crimes generate real injustice and expense, with little if any deterrence.

These are all major decisions that I do not take lightly, because they are very important to north Idaho.

December is the time of year we reflect on the highs and lows of the past 12 months. When it comes to small business, 2018 was definitely a high. In fact, I believe it was one of the best years for our region’s entrepreneurs and job creators.

I commend those working to protect and help children in all of our communities. This work is no doubt heartbreaking, but also motivating continued progress. Those working to bring healing and hope to troubled and hurting children and families are making a difference in the lives of many throughout Idaho.

Guest Opinion

As we look ahead to the new year, a new state government administration, and the 2019 legislative session, I offer the following select thoughts. The elections are over, it’s time for elected officials to dig in to do the hard work. So, let’s begin with chocolate.

Guest Opinion

As members of the Baby Boomer generation reach what was once considered the “golden years,” many are redefining what it means to be an older adult. Instead of retirement and rocking chairs, they’re working longer and living more active lifestyles than their parents ever did. But while Baby B…

Idaho has not had a take permit since 2010. The federal government has not approved Idaho’s Fisheries Evaluation & Monitoring Plan (FEMP) in eight years. It is crucial that management plans be updated and legal.

At a closed-door meeting at Trails Restaurant on the evening of Nov. 20, local sportsmen and Idaho Fish and Game officials met to discuss the status and future of elk herds residing in the Elk City Zone surrounding Grangeville.

Having been involved in steelhead management as a professional biologist, and being a steelhead fisherman for over 40 years, I’m well aware how important steelhead fishing is to Idaho anglers and local economies. The loss of that opportunity, even temporarily, due to a lawsuit and unprocessed permit is truly regrettable.

A Citizens Against Poaching (CAP) call came in Oct. 16 from a concerned sportsman who had located multiple elk shot in close proximity to one another on the Whitebird Hill Access Yes! Property. Upon investigation, four bull elk were found butchered within 40 yards of one another and a fifth bull was located approximately 100 yards away.

Our children are growing up in a world where personal privacy is “old-fashioned.” Everything we do we record, video, or snap pictures of it. Almost everything that happens is monitored somehow, usually by ourselves, then shared to the world.

Veterans, by putting their lives on the line for their country, communities, fellow servicemembers and fellow Americans, represent the ultimate sacrifice, which is at the core of their service. We honor veterans this Veterans Day by recognizing the foundation of their service and helping to ensure that their immense commitment is acknowledged and respected.

Proposition 2 is critical to the health and viability of not only our rural hospitals, but more importantly, our local economies. Medicaid expansion benefits the hardworking members of our local small businesses, farms, and forest workers, in both emergency situations and important preventative care.

A new Center for American Progress report quantifies the potential benefits of Medicaid expansion in Idaho and the 18 other states that have not yet implemented Medicaid expansion under the Affordable Care Act. The report looks at multiple ways that Idaho’s failure to expand Medicaid is harming Idahoans, depriving them of health-related benefits such as additional lives saved, as well as nonhealth benefits such as fewer bankruptcies, lower medical debts, and enhanced public safety.

If Medicaid expansion is bad, Proposition 2 is worse because of how it is worded: Prop 2 would give immense power to federal politicians and bureaucrats over Idaho. Said federal power would very likely be in violation of the state constitution. Further, such power could prove damaging to myriad programs.

The Idaho Chapter of the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) has endorsed Proposition 2, the Medicaid expansion ballot initiative. The endorsement comes on World Suicide Prevention Day and at the beginning of National Suicide Prevention Week. If passed, Proposition 2 will provide healthcare for the 62,000 Idahoans who fall into the state’s healthcare coverage gap.

The Idaho Primary Care Association today endorsed Proposition 2, the Medicaid expansion ballot initiative. If passed, Proposition 2 will provide healthcare for the 62,000 Idahoans who fall into the state’s health coverage gap.

The week of Oct. 9, Christians and other faith leaders launched a week of prayer and action in support of Proposition 2, the Medicaid expansion ballot intuitive. More than 40 religious leaders around the state have signed their names to a letter urging people of faith to support Proposition 2, the Medicaid expansion ballot initiative.

The Idahoans for Healthcare campaign on Oct. 23 announced a key endorsement from North Idaho lumber producer Idaho Forest Group. The announcement came during the Idahoans for Healthcare “Business & Health Clinic Vote Yes on 2 Tour” stop at the Heritage Health clinic in Coeur d’Alene. The event also featured Rep. Luke Malek and Mike Baker, CEO, of Heritage Health.

Americans for Tax Reform released its new guide to noteworthy initiatives, amendments, and referenda that will appear on statewide ballots during the 2018 midterm elections. The fate of more than 150 statewide ballot measures will be decided by voters in 38 states from coast to coast on November 6. ATR Recommendation: Oppose

Idaho Department of Health and Welfare records show that Milliman, the controversial consulting firm that estimates the costs of Idaho’s proposed Medicaid expansion, changed its forecast seven times over the course of about a month. Further, Milliman cut its gross-cost estimates by more than 30 percent, from the first to the final draft, to sell Idahoans on Obamacare’s Medicaid expansion.

Supporters of Proposition 2, the Obamacare Medicaid expansion, are hiding their financial motives. They want the public to believe that they speak for those who can’t afford health care coverage, while neglecting to mention that the initiative’s backers stand to gain financially.

    On Sept. 27, nearly 30 members of the Idaho House of Representatives and legislative candidates announced their opposition to Proposition 2, the Obamacare expansion that will appear on the ballot in November. State Rep. John Vander Woude, R-Nampa, warned voters against Obamacare expansion’s longterm consequences.

    The greatest benefit of Prop 2 is it provides medical insurance to the working poor and the mentally ill in the “Gap.” People in the insurance “Gap” (those that cannot qualify for Medicaid because they make too much money and not eligible for subsidies by not making enough money) consist of approximately 62,000 Idahoans.

    Approximately 9.5 million acres of public lands in the West are landlocked, meaning they are not accessible to hunters, anglers, and others. In Idaho, approximately 208,000 acres are landlocked. We have an excellent opportunity to fix some of these access issues with the inclusion of Making Public Lands Public (MPLP) provisions in LWCF reauthorization legislation.

    When voters consider expanding Medicaid to Idaho’s Gap Population (those who make too little for federal subsidies and too much for state assistance), it’s more than being compassionate to Idaho’s working poor. A recent Milliman study confirms that Idaho’s economy will be strengthened, and taxpayers’ dollars will be used more efficiently and effectively.

    Nobody chooses to be a victim and go through the trauma, loss and confusion victims often experience. This is why it’s important for Idahoans to think about Marsy’s Law for Idaho and its goal of strengthening and improving the rights of crime victims.

    Opioid abuse has crept into all parts of our country, destroying lives and requiring a range of skills and professions to fight it. There are big glimmers of progress in this effort, and we must continue to get all the needed tools in place to help those who are working hard to protect American families from this destructive problem.

    Idaho is working on tangible changes to better protect and care for survivors of sexual violence from the moment their attack is reported, all the way through the legal process. The next phase of this fight against sexual assault in Idaho is to provide respectful and humane care to survivors – no matter where they live. The changes we’re seeing couldn’t have happened without Idahoans working together and putting victims at the center of their focus.

    A story broke this month about a boat being stopped at the Washington-Idaho border. At first blush, it might seem like an odd event to draw news coverage. However, it wasn’t the boat the inspectors were interested in – it’s what was on the boat that made them nervous. What they found on that boat were zebra mussels.

    Last week, Idaho County Republicans (otherwise known as your Idaho County Republican Central Committee) – the “pro-life” party - issued a formal challenge to all county Republican organizations throughout the State of Idaho: Join us in actively supporting and campaigning for the passage of the Life at Conception Act bills currently pending in the U.S. Congress. Of all bills pending in Congress, why are we focusing on the Life at Conception Act?

    For numerous years, newspapers throughout Idaho have received millions of dollars in taxpayer subsidies. For as long as Idaho has been a state, newspapers have benefited from laws that require government agencies to post public notices in newsprint. In 2017, government entities paid more than $3 million for such notices, exceeding what the Legislature appropriated from the General Fund for state-run media outlets.

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