GOP official argues all Idaho traffic tickets are unconstitutional, makes case to Court of Appeals Tuesday

Ryan Davidson will ask the Idaho Court of Appeals today to overturn his 2007 misdemeanor conviction for driving without privileges on the grounds that Idaho law denies defendants due process when their driver's licenses are suspended after conviction.

Davidson is a leading backer of presidential candidate Ron Paul, Ada County Republican precinct committeeman and third vice chairman of the Ada GOP. He formerly chaired the Idaho Libertarian Party, championed pot legalization initiatives in Hailey and Sun Valley, ran for Garden City Council and Ada County coroner, and led the effort to increase the influence of Paul backers in GOP county central committees across the state.

Davidson, representing himself, will make his oral argument to the Idaho Court of Appeals at 1:30 p.m. Tuesday to reverse decisions by Ada County Magistrate Thomas Watkins and 4th District Judge Cheri Copsey. The Idaho Attorney General's office is representing the state.

He also argues that the magistrate abused his discretion and that he received ineffective legal counsel.

In a Facebook posting asking supporters to join him in court today, Davidson writes, "I refused all plea bargains. I fired two incompetant (sic) public defenders who refused to present my research to the court. I was thrown in jail for three days at one point because I hadn't filed the correct paperwork. And at every turn, the lower court judges refused to give my arguments a fair hearing."

In 2006, Davidson argued and won an Idaho Supreme Court case that held that the Sun Valley Clerk didn't have authority to nix a pot legalization initiative. His 2007 and 2008 marijuana initiatives in Hailey were either defeated or struck down by the courts, excepting a measure that makes enforcement of marijuana laws the lowest priority for Hailey police.

In a news release from his pro-Paul group, Idahoans for Liberty, Davidson said his appeal could strike down all traffic infraction tickets in the state as unconstitutional "because the post-conviction process is fatally flawed" because of the 14th Amendment and a recent case in Washington State, Redmond v. Moore.

In his Facebook posting, Davidson writes:

"A driver's license is a valuable right, and the state cannot suspend it for failure to pay an infraction fine without granting you a substantive hearing where such suspension can be contested.

"Currently the State of Idaho does not allow for such a hearing, as such, they violate the procedural due process rights of license holder, contrary to the 5th and 14th Amendments.

"A conviction of driving without privileges cannot be sustained if the state suspended the license without due process.

"The logical extension of my argument is that every traffic ticket in Idaho is unconstitutional, because there is no adequate process in place to govern post-conviction hearings."

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"GOP Official"?
Get out of town Popkey!

Precint committeeman does not equal a "party official".


The better story here is how the TeaBaggers are trying to take control of the Republican party by starting at the grassroots level - the precints.

Popkey, Try to use the correct terms though- he is a Libertarian.

Precinct committeeman is an elected position

Precinct committeemen and women make up county central committees, which are creatures of the state. County central committee members make up the state central committees. They also submit names to the governor to fill vacant legislative and county-level positions, a frequent path to elected office in Idaho.

So, Pimp2, I used the correct terms. Davidson is a former Libertarian. He also holds the position of third vice chairman of the Ada County Republican Central Committee.

Dan Popkey


I believe that driving on Idaho roads is a privilege and not a right.

Not a right

I believe that turning left on Idaho roads is a privilege and not a right.


Geez, grow a pair and man up instead of whining and taking everything to court. I don't know why your license was suspended, but by driving without priveleges, you chose to break the law which is applied to everyone, not just you. Feel martyred much?


The courts ARE where you take these kind of things. The courts are the last defense against what may or may not be a corrupt police system.

I'm not saying our judicial system is corrupt, but that the ability to present your case in court is one of THE motivating issues for the founding of our nation.

I'd hardly consider exercising ones Constitutionally guaranteed abilities to a trial as "whining."

Or may be you would be OK if the US military seized you on some bogus suspicion of terrorist activities, and held you with out trial for the rest of your life.....

stop breaking the law

"you chose to break the law"

Wow, you must really trust 'the law'.

Suggestion, find some attorneys on a Friday night after they have had a few and ask em for some good stories.

This "official" has a good point right up until he tries to extend the case to "all traffic tickets". More so, he has a point until he breaks the law instead of fighting it first.

Don't worry, sickend, maybe one of these days if you are unlucky enough you too can get screwed by 'the law'.

Nice stretch

Holding a position that is slightly above the lowest level person in the GOP is not exactly considered a "GOP Official"

Just like a teacher that happens to be a member of the IEA isn't an "IEA official."

If so, you should have no objection to being beaten or shot?

That might shut the cat up.


"foreignoregonian" is not anonymous

It is my identity and my philosophy

Would you prefer everyone to be called 'Poster'?

Oh goody. A cell mate for Rep. Phil Hart.

What kind of glue are these guys sniffing?


I'm glad there's people like Davidson running around out there, I just wish he picked different battles. It's really not that hard to keep your license valid unless you're a deadbeat. Ron Paul would slap him upside the head and tell him to slow down and pay his tickets. His prior Supreme Court deal with the marijuana initiative was also a complete waste of time. I get that they're all little political statements, but I wish he'd take on something more practical, especially since he seems to have a knack for getting courts to listen to this stuff

So I can fatally smite him with a crusty banana peel?


"foreignoregonian" is not anonymous

It is my identity and my philosophy

Would you prefer everyone to be called 'Poster'?

He is taking on something

He is taking on something more substantial, but you would have to be in some of the same groups to know what that thing is. (shrug).

Get involved at the lowest level of the party and work your way up. Shape the GOP into the party you want to vote for, not the party you can't stand the sight of.

get in shape

Hey Jason, what's wrong with the Libertarians shaping their OWN party?

The Pringles Effect

Once it's POP, you can't stop.


"foreignoregonian" is not anonymous

It is my identity and my philosophy

Would you prefer everyone to be called 'Poster'?

Right to Travel??? Right to due process???

I think it's a right to be able to travel or do anything else for that matter as long as you're not infringing on someone elses rights... and due process is a basic guarantee which is not adequate in the area of traffic citations. Ryan Davidson has a valid and valiant point...

If we have the right to bear arms...

can we take speeders to the taxidermist?

No, our wives will make us take those ugly things out to the storage shed.


"foreignoregonian" is not anonymous

It is my identity and my philosophy

Would you prefer everyone to be called 'Poster'?