“You have to understand: This is an election year, and the majority party has made moves to make their party even more conservative. There are sitting legislators who are thinking [that] opposing the federal government is a way to do that.” State Sen. Dan Schmidt, D-Moscow
How many ways can Idaho lawmakers tell the feds to get lost? Currently, one North Idaho state representative is asking the Environmental Protection Agency to get out of the Silver Valley within five years. Another lawmaker wants to buck the Federal Reserve System by declaring gold and silver coins as legal currency. And a third legislator is asking Congress to abolish the No Child Left Behind Act, while Idaho’s education department is crafting a waiver to get the state out of the program until it’s renewed.
And that’s not to mention Obama, or his dreaded “Obamacare.”
Bill by bill, lawmakers in Republican-dominated Idaho are declaring their independence from Washington, D.C. Democrats decry the moves as political posturing in an election year. Republicans, however, are hopping mad at a federal government that they say is meddling in the state’s affairs. And since about 80 percent of Idaho’s legislators are GOP members, they get to be right.