Idaho has considerable influence despite Romney's loss

My assignment Tuesday night was to write the story on how the election outcome would affect Idaho. That required me to prepare for the possible reelection of President Obama, the election of Mitt Romney and the possibility we wouldn’t know by deadline.

I had to talk to a lot of people about a lot of subjects and about what actions a president might take and how the federal government affects Idaho. All of the Republicans I interviewed said the major impact of Romney’s election would be his close ties to Idaho and to Idahoans who could play a major role in his administration.

“There is no area where Idaho won’t have a seat at the table,” one prominent Republican said, summing up the views of many.

So sadden Republicans at the Riverside Hotel late Tuesday said that Idaho doesn’t have a seat at any of the tables of executive power. But they all looked at it from the view of their power base in Idaho.

Two Idahoans have very large seats at the table of executive power after Tuesday. Jim Messina, who grew up in Boise and graduated from Boise High School led Obama’s reelection campaign that observers said used a mix of behavioral science and technology to identify and get out to vote a new crop of voters to the coalition.

He has now kept his election victory record intact since he ran a campaign for former Missoula Mayor Dan Kemmis in 1993. The sky seems to be the limit for his future.

Vice President Joe Biden’s chief of staff Bruce Reed grew up in Coeur D’ Alene, the son of environmental attorney Scott Reed and former Democratic Senator Mary Lou Reed. He was credited by former President Bill Clinton as co-author of his powerful convention speech that energized Democratic activists.

Then there is Tom Tidwell, who attended Capital High and now heads the Forest Service and Park Service Director Jon Jarvis, who used to be the superintendent of Craters of the Moon National Monument near Arco. And how about National Education Association Executive Director John Stocks, a former Idaho state senator, whose group helped fund the campaign to defeat Propositions 1,2, and 3?

Don’t forget, Republican Sens. Mike Crapo and Jim Risch each expanded their clout in the Senate.

Crapo likely moves up to the number three GOP spot on the finance committee that among other roles, writes tax policy. Risch does the same on the Foreign Relations Committee, a remarkable rise for a first term senator.

Rep. Mike Simpson keeps his post as subcommittee chairman of the Appropriations subcommittee that oversees Interior, the Forest Service and the Environmental Protection Agency. He remains close to House Speaker John Boehner and in an ideal place to protect Idaho’s interests as Congress continues deep cuts to programs.

Finally, Republican Rep. Raul Labrador told Republican leaders two years ago that they needed to change the way they approached the growing Hispanic community or it would cost them. He now looks like a sage and offers the chance to become one of the major Hispanic voices of the Republican Party at a time when they know they need them.

Each and every one part of

Each and every one part of the problem.

So, who would you consider not to be part of the problem?

Are they part of the problem as soon as they arrive in DC?

Simpson and Crapo have 28

Simpson and Crapo have 28 years between them. I don't count one of Obama's campaign managers as a plus for Idaho. Reed has been there for more than 25 years. That leaves Tidwell and Labrador. I don't know much about Tidwell. Jury is out on Labrador, but I haven't seen much other than self promotion so far.

Who would you rather have there?

I think Labrador has been kind of worthless so far. I agree....lots of self promotion but not much else. I am still hoping he will be of value to work on immigration reform. We'll see. I like Simpson. Crapo leaves me a little cold but I realize he is playing an important role in the debt/budget discussions. I think he is a reasonable person and think he can help keep the process going. I just don't know that he really pulls much weight despite his senority.

I don't thin that someone is bad just because they have years of experience. For exampel, Risch hasn't been there long and I would be just as happy if he left tomorrow. I don't think he adds anything of real substance to the conversation and is completely driven by partisan politics and power.

I guess my point is that the

I guess my point is that the years of experience that Crapo and Simpson haven't done us any good. As a matter of fact, they were there when both houses and the Pres were Republican and all they did was spend us into a hole and put our civil liberties in jeopardy. They may both be good people.. but so are you and I. It takes more than that. And they obviously don't have it. Further, Rocky's premise that if you are from Idaho, you are good for Idaho in Washington is silly. :)

You are absolutely smokin' rope

Maybe Simpson, who's buddy is Speaker can save a little bit of INL. But since Fukushima no US utility is building nukes from the ground up, and only 2-3 mothballed ones are slated for full completion. AREVA is mere weeks away from abandoning the Eagle Rock project altogether.

Idaho needs to completely reorganize its confiscatory income tax system which subsidizes low wage agriculture and the LDS Church. The best best the state has is to go after those industries that will be fleeing high tax California, but due to the complete lack of visionary leadership from the witless Butch Otter & Co, we'll have to take a number and stand in line behind much more competitive states.


Rock's headline:
"Idaho has considerable influence"

Okay, let's see that happen!

"Despite Romney's loss"...

Now it's a diss?


If you still print the same stuff everybody else gets from AP, Reuters and Yahoo! without subtantive local content beyond this, you are doomed to fail wanting money from me.

Karl Brooks

Former Idaho State Senator Karl Brooks is the EPA's Midwest Region Administrator and seems to maintain tight connection to his home state.

He's crazy-glued taters to himself?


If you still print the same stuff everybody else gets from AP, Reuters and Yahoo! without subtantive local content beyond this, you are doomed to fail wanting money from me.

Hey Barker maybe you should

Hey Barker maybe you should check the Congressional record and details before touting Crapo's position on the the Senate finance committee, maybe you should question his entrenchment, we need change at the top not more of the status quo.

This man was one the leads during the Bush years massive deregulation of Wall Street& Banking that lead to and destroyed our economy causing thousands of Idahoans to lose jobs, homes and their savings.

Crapo is no friend of hardworking everyday Idahoans, he is a career politician whose political career is funded by Banking and Wall Street sources.

Crapo strictly votes in there best interests and his voting record clearly indicates a strong allegiance to there wealthy interests, while standing in obstruction and opposition to helping hardworking Idahoans at any level.

He voted against a women's right to sue over being raped while serving her government. Shameful man

Amazing you somehow think this man helps Idahoans. We have had enough of Crapo the career politician, Idaho needs a new Senator who serves Idahoans.

True, yet none of his detractors will run.


If you still print the same stuff everybody else gets from AP, Reuters and Yahoo! without subtantive local content beyond this, you are doomed to fail wanting money from me.