Commentary

Idaho Capitol rotunda

Our Idaho legislators should take a budgeting lesson from struggling families

BY: - January 19, 2022

Even before they blew into Boise for the 2022 legislative session, Idaho legislators were rhapsodizing about the gigantic tax cuts they were going to bestow upon their voters – $350 million, $400 million, $600 million. The sky’s the limit in an election year. There is certainly enough surplus revenue in state coffers to sweeten the […]

Gov. Brad Little in House chambers

The Legislature is violating its constitutional duty to adequately fund Idaho’s public schools

BY: - January 13, 2022

Idaho has an historic $1.6 billion revenue surplus, much of which can and should be used to finally satisfy the Legislature’s constitutional duty to provide adequate funding for Idaho’s public school system. Article IX, Section 1 of the Idaho Constitution commands that “it shall be the duty of the legislature of Idaho, to establish and […]

Idaho State Capitol

Former Idaho legislator Steve Hartgen was top of his game as editor

BY: - January 6, 2022

It might have been surprising to some to see Steve Hartgen’s regular column in Times-News on Sunday, given the fact that he died two days earlier. But leave it to Steve to take care of the small details – such as sending out his column to editors in plenty of time for Sunday’s paper. Knowing […]

Idaho Capital Building in Boise

Same song, 2nd verse: In a way, Idaho’s political history is repeating, but this time it’s worse.

BY: - January 3, 2022

Forty-eight years ago this week, Republican President Richard Nixon signed into law the Endangered Species Act, a landmark piece of legislation that, as Nixon said, gave our government tools to protect “the rich array of animal life with which our country has been blessed.” This most unlikely environmental president, a guy who walked the beach in […]

The Joint Finance Appropriations Committee room

With Idaho’s expected surplus, Gov. Brad Little’s budget is a solid fiscal agenda for Idaho

BY: - December 30, 2021

Gov. Brad Little showed more pages of his upcoming proposed budget when he met with several hundred attendees at the annual Idaho taxpayer’s conference in Boise earlier this month. The governor, who has hinted about various items previously, took the opportunity to lay out his thinking in more detail. The state is in good shape […]

Kids run at school campus

Idaho needs your help to support struggling families

BY: - December 28, 2021

The work of our child welfare staff is often unseen. They work with families experiencing some of the most difficult times of their lives, and the work they do is not often visible to others because child welfare cases are confidential to protect the privacy of the families involved. Staff across the board in the […]

Trump supporters storming the U.S. Capitol

This time, let’s not ignore a distinguished Idaho State grad’s warning about our democracy’s fate

BY: - December 27, 2021

A hand grenade was dropped into the lap of Maj. Gen. Antonio Taguba in 2004 when he was assigned to investigate reports of prisoner abuse at Abu Ghraib Prison in Iraq. I understand the conflicting interests such an investigator faces because I had been appointed to investigate an artillery incident involving a friend in my […]

farmland covered in snow

An Idahoan’s Christmas wish to end a difficult year

BY: - December 23, 2021

Is there anyone who hasn’t been impacted this year by the scourge of COVID-19, which now threatens yet another wave of highly-transmittable sickness across the land? We all know people who have fallen ill, and some of them have not survived. We know families affected in the same way, so for many, it will be […]

university students in a classroom

For 20 years, we’ve given the gift of higher education through this Idaho program. Here’s how.

BY: - December 22, 2021

My wife, Patricia, and I have nine grandkids sprinkled across the country from Houston to Pittsburgh to Chicago and to Portland. Four of them are college graduates, including a granddaughter with a graduate degree, and three others are enrolled in college thanks to a gift they received from us initiated more than 20 years ago.  […]

Rep. Liz Cheney

U.S. Congresswoman Liz Cheney is the Margaret Chase Smith of our time

BY: - December 21, 2021

The latest skirmish in the war between Donald Trump and Liz Cheney began Oct. 10, when Fox News host Chris Wallace asked Trump acolyte, House Minority Whip Steve Scalice (R-La.), whether President Biden had legitimately won the 2020 election. Scalice was not about to fall into the trap of answering a direct yes or no […]

thank you essential workers sign

North Idahoans must speak out against extremism, support one another with kindness

BY: - December 16, 2021

Health care providers often have the difficult task of telling their patients things they don’t want to hear. It is never easy to tell a person with diabetes they need to change their diet and start exercising or face dire consequences. Sometimes the patient needs to hear the truth about their choices and what it […]

Bob Dole

What ever happened to Bob Dole style Republicans?

BY: - December 15, 2021

Sen. Bob Dole moved from the House to the Senate a year before I started a three-year stint in Washington with former Idaho Sen. Len Jordan in 1970. You hear a lot over the Capitol grapevine about various senators, and Dole was a frequent topic of conversation. Word was that he was ambitious, more partisan […]