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Idaho Politics Weekly Newsletter

Monday, January 8, 2018

Your one-stop source for Idaho political, government and public policy information, presented by Zions Bank. Subscribe to have our weekly e-newsletter delivered to your in-box each Monday morning.

This Week In Idaho Politics

Idahoans like their Legislature, but dislike Congress
By Idaho Politics Weekly
Three-fourths of Idahoans disapprove of the job Congress is doing, an Idaho Politics Weekly poll finds.But 58 percent approve of the job the Idaho Legislature is doing, finds the survey by Dan Jones & Associates....

These 'crazy' House conservatives are building power
By Chuck Malloy, Idaho Politics Weekly Contributor
Gov. Butch Otter, who this year completes his third term in office, may not be the only high-profile lame-duck officeholder in the statehouse....

9th Circuit tackles Idaho's 'Ag Gag' law
By Steve Taggart, Idaho Politics Weekly Contributor
Last week the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals handed down a decision on Idaho's so-called "ag gag" law that restricts certain activities around agricultural production facilities....

Warehousing low-risk drug offenders is a mistake
By Jim Jones
I'll be the first to admit that it was a mistake to support mandatory minimum sentences for drug traffickers during my tenure as Idaho Attorney General in the 1980s. Most observers have come to realize that long mandatory sentences are not appropriat...

Guest opinion: Tax reform benefits taxpayers and boost economy
By Sens. Mike Crapo and Jim Risch
A typical family of four will get a $2,059 tax cut.  Lower-middle and middle income families can save time and money on tax preparation due to the near doubling of the standard deduction and other simplifications. ...

Guest opinion: A look back at 2017
By Congressman Raul Labrador
Working with my colleagues and President Trump, we have fulfilled our promises to grow jobs and the economy, roll back regulatory overreach and enact significant tax reform.A key reason Americans voted for change in 2016 was to improve our economy. W...

Guest opinion: Senate Banking Committee had a good year
By Sen. Mike Crapo
Serving as Senate Banking Committee Chairman over the past year has been an honor and responsibility as the committee has worked to manage legislation that affects so many Americans.  Despite the current political climate, my priority has been t...

Idaho lost two outstanding public servants in 2017
By Jim Jones
This year witnessed the passing of two Idahoans who dedicated their lives to public service. Neither Orval Hansen nor Larry Boyle held public office to enrich themselves or others but, rather, to give of their time on this planet to make it a better ...

What will drive Idaho's 2018 elections?
By Steve Taggart
Americans today are a grumpy lot. Overall, the economy is pretty strong but U.S. voters are not satisfied with the current direction of the country. The latest Real Clear Politics average of polls show that only 32.3% of Americans surveyed belie...

Fulcher gets big boost to his congressional bid
By Chuck Malloy, Idaho Politics Weekly Contributor
The political action group that propelled former Congressman Bill Sali to brief political fame a decade ago is back at it this time campaigning on behalf of former state Sen. Russ Fulcher in his bid for the First District congressional seat.The Club...

Trump is among most popular politicians in Idaho
By Bob Bernick, Contributing Editor
Pres. Donald Trump may want to think about spending some time in Idaho.An Idaho Politics Weekly poll finds the controversial president is quite popular here.He has a 59 percent approval rating, with 41 percent of Idahoans disapproving of the job Trum...

Political Calendar Highlights

See our full political calendar.

Nez Perce County Republican Women Meeting
When: Tuesday, Jan 9, 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Where: Red Lion Hotel Lewiston, 621 21st St, Lewiston, ID  
A group of dynamic republicans educating the community. For more information, contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., NPCRW President.

Bannock County Dems Political Soup                      
When: Wednesday, Jan 10, 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Where: 355 Yellowstone Ave, Pocatello, ID
We serve soup and salad or pizza and have a speaker from the community.

Boise Chamber Legislative Forum
When: Thursday, Jan 11, 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.
Where: JUMP-Jack's Urban Meeting Place 1000 W. Myrtle St. Boise, ID
The Chamber's Annual Legislative Forum is the main opportunity for the business community to welcome members of the State Legislature to Boise. The Chamber will present its 2018 Legislative Agenda that addresses issues needed to grow the state's economy, and will ask legislators for their support. This event is an excellent opportunity for the business community to connect with other business leaders and elected officials. More info including agenda and registration here.

Kootenai County Dems Holiday Open House and Volunteer Fair
When: Thursday, Jan 11, 4 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Where: 206 E Indiana Ave, Coeur d'Alene, ID 
The Kootenai Democrats are throwing a party to celebrate the holiday season and our loyal volunteers and supporters. The festivities will begin at 6 pm at our headquarters. Please bring an appetizer and/or a beverage to share with the group. Come early and participate in our volunteer fair. The fair is an effort to raise awareness about the importance of getting more Democrats engaged in our activities. Please plan to drop by from 4-6 pm for the volunteer overview then stay for the open house. More info.

To submit events to the Idaho Politics Weekly calendar please use our contact form here.

Idaho Headlines

Nine 'liberty legislators' hold their own legislative preview (Spokesman-Review)

Idaho lawmakers to convene under political spotlight (Spokesman-Review)

Labrador says that as governor, he would slash Idaho's taxes (Idaho Statesman)

Gov. Otter to let insurers lift some Obamacare requirements (Idaho Statesman)

Why Idaho believes it can let insurers lift some Obamacare requirements (Idaho Statesman)

5 things to watch as Idaho lawmakers return to Boise for 2018 session (Idaho Statesman)

Lawmakers: Idaho growing pains will affect prisons, health care and education issues this session (Times-News)

Idaho legislative preview: 5 things to watch during the 2018 session (Times-News)

Marty Trillhaase: Indulging Idaho's tax-cut fetish won't come cheap (Lewiston Tribune)

Federal tax reform a hot topic for Idaho Legislature (Lewiston Tribune)

Idaho officials taking strides toward cheaper health coverage (Lewiston Tribune)

Education, Kid's Health Care Likely Big Issues At 2018 Legislature (Boise State Public Radio)

Idaho Legislature gets down to business (Idaho Business Review)

Legislators should reject Ottercare, come up with own plan to help Idahoans (Idaho Freedom Foundation)

Proposed stadium's supporters ignore reality, risk as they pitch taxpayer-backed project (Idaho Freedom Foundation)

9th Circuit strikes down most of Idaho's 'ag gag' law (Capital Press)

Eleven questions the 2018 legislative session will answer (Idaho Education News)

Otter meets the press ... well, sort of (Idaho Education News)

National Headlines

The Democrats' 'Russian Descent' (Wall Street Journal)

Another 'Oops' from the Intelligence Community (PJMedia)

Grand jury empaneled in Burlington College case (VTDigger)

Good Fight to Explore Impeachment of President Trump by 'Shameless' Means (TVLine)

In Clash Between California and Trump, It's One America Versus Another (New York Times)

Recovering Sen. Paul says political violence rising concern (Associated Press)

Bannon expresses regret over response to bombshell book (CNN)

Bannon Tries Backing Away From Explosive Comments (New York Times)

Trey Gowdy Blasts Adam Schiff Over Statements About Trump-Russia Probe (Daily Caller)

U.S. judge in Las Vegas may dismiss ranching standoff case (Associated Press)

In possible boon for White House, Fed ready to lay low as tax plan kicks in (Reuters)