In a Nov. 12 letter released Friday as an "Open Letter to the Governor," Tea Party Boise President Chad Inman quotes Gov. Butch Otter's own words in arguing against a state-run exchange under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, or Obamacare.
Inman's letter includes part of Otter's foreward in one edition of the late LDS President and U.S. Agriculture Secretary Ezra Taft Benson's booklet, "The Proper Role of Government," which Otter often gives to guests visiting his office.
Wrote Otter: "Politicians, bureaucrats and judges in all branches and at all levels of government are using the law to accomplish incrementally the very ends that our form of government was created to prevent."
Inman writes on behalf of the umbrella group Gem State Tea Party that Obamacare "is just another example of the unending federal quest for power over our lives; exactly what the founding fathers anticipated! It is the option of the state, the duty of the state to intervene. States created the federal government. It is time for states to intervene."
Inman said a state exchange "subjects citizens to many anti-liberty sections of (the law) that otherwise are not imposed on citizens if the federal government sets it up."
Otter appointed a work group to study whether Idaho ought to form the exchange, which voted 10-2 to recommend a state exchange. Inman's letter suggests members of the panel were advancing their self-interest.
"Do some of the study group members have a personal interest thus ignoring the best interests of the state and country?" Inman writes.
The 10 members who voted for adopting a state exchange were Sen. John Goedde, R-Coeur d’Alene, who sells insurance; Rep. John Rusche, D-Lewiston, a retired physician who worked for Regence Blue Shield of Idaho; Zelda Geyer-Sylvia of Blue Cross of Idaho; Scott Kreiling of Regence Blue Shield; Dave Self of Pacific Source Health Plans; Tom Shores, an independent health insurance broker; Kevin Settles, owner of Bardenay; Dr. John Livingston of Boise; Alex LaBeau, president of the Idaho Association of Commerce and Industry; and John Watts, president of the Idaho Chamber Alliance.
The two no votes came from Rep. Lynn Luker, R-Boise, a lawyer; and Wayne Hoffman, a lobbyist for the free-market group Idaho Freedom Foundation.
You can follow Idaho Statesman Politics on Twitter.