Idaho’s Republican-controlled Legislature and its mind boggling priorities demonstrate again and again that they put bizarre policies over protecting hard-working Idahoans and their families. Here are a few shining example from recent days.
On Monday the full House shot down a bill which would have expanded Idaho’s felon firearm ban. The reason? They felt that it defined “terrorism” too broadly according to Rep. Judy Boyle, R-Midvale, who visited the armed occupiers of the Malheur Wildlife Refuge multiple times last year. And by “too broadly” we mean the Bundy Boys who held an armed standoff at a federal facility would also be considered terrorists under this sweeping new law, and that just isn’t acceptable. Meanwhile, Idaho’s hate crime laws still don’t include sexual orientation or gender identity. Idaho Republicans clearly care more about protecting armed militias who take over federal facilities than they do about protecting Idahoans from real violence.
On Tuesday the Legislature heard a bill that would explicitly ban “motorcycle profiling.” If you’re asking yourself “WTF is motorcycle profiling” you’re not alone. The bill would ban police from pulling someone over just because they are riding a motorcycle or wearing biker paraphernalia. Meanwhile, the House is currently considering an anti-immigrant bill introduced by Rep. Greg Cheney, R-Caldwell, which would inevitably result in racial profiling. You be the judge of which form of profiling is actually a problem in the real world. See our video and take action against Chaney’s bill here.
Idaho Republicans can’t be bothered protecting human rights, as evidenced by their continued failure to pass the Add the Words bill, which would protect Idaho’s LGBTQ community from discrimination in housing, employment, and public accommodations. However, Idaho’s GOP are dedicated to protecting Idaho’s students from the evils of learning about climate change. Apparently science is way scarier than discrimination to this crew.
In spite of their declared positions against “big government,” Idaho’s GOP continuously erodes the authority of local governments whenever it suits them. Rep. Dustin Manwaring, R-Pocatello, introduced a bill last week to limit early voting statewide, rather than continue to allow local governments to make their own determinations about early voting. Rep. Chaney’s anti-immigration bill, mentioned above, limits the abilities of local governments to determine how best to protect their communities. And let’s not forget the Legislature’s ban on local regulations regarding plastic bags last year, or minimum wage, or eminent domain, the list goes on.
For further evidence of hypocrisy, we look north, to Sen. Dan Foreman, R-Moscow, who wants to charge women and their doctors with murder for undergoing a medical procedure. Meanwhile, Idaho’s extreme right-wing have yet to do away with the law that allows parents who believe in faith healing to withhold life-saving medical care from their children without facing charges for criminal neglect. Who’s “pro-life” again?
The national GOP brand is losing luster by the hour and Idaho Republicans continue to reveal their priorities to us at home.
Idaho GOP, let’s cut the crap about “big government,” “local control,” and “family values.” You sound like spineless, uninformed, hypocrites and your state is ashamed. It’s amazing how many snowflakes we can find in Boise when it’s not even snowing.