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Support real Republican candidates, not LIDARs

| January 9, 2022 1:00 AM

A recent online comment branded Sage Dixon a RINO (Republican in Name Only). I believe this same faction of the local Republican Central Committee also applied this acronym to conservative veteran state Senator Jim Woodward. I also recently heard the leadership of the Bonner County Republican Women, Inc. blast Senators Mike Crapo and James Risch as “swamp preachers” (or was it “swamp creatures,” I couldn’t be sure).

Senators Woodward, Crapo and Risch and Representative Dixon are strong conservative Republicans that have consistently supported Republican interests. What they have not done is blindly agree with every platform of the Idaho Freedom Foundation, and for that they are blasted by our local Republican Party leadership.

The IFF is not the Republican Party and it’s time traditional Republicans stand up to take our local party back from the LIDARs; Libertarians in Disguise as Republicans. In the nearly 20 years I’ve lived here, I’ve seen local politics shift from traditional conservative Republican values to a small consortium of very loud and organized Libertarians who oppose taxes of any kind, public education of any sort, and bipartisanship regardless of whether or not it is in the best interest of the community.

I get that taxes are painful, especially when you start to think about how our monies can be misappropriated and wasted. I’m a huge proponent of fiscal responsibility and accountability, but we can’t survive as a community if we flatly oppose any tax or levy. Taxes are the way we pay for necessary government services; public safety, law enforcement, education, just to name the basics. I’m a bit scared to see how the roads are going to look in February when La Niña is supposed to be at full force and our budget-depleted Road and Bridge department fights to maintain safe roads.

I don’t believe I am the only Republican dissatisfied with obstructionist politics. The recently departed Bob Dole once said “All the wisdom doesn’t reside in one party.”

Political gridlock and inaction are caused by myopic representatives with the sole intention to repudiate the other side. When did it become a win for either side to get nothing done? I believe the majority of both sides of the political aisle are fed up with the political extremes and their obstruction of any constructive legislation and just want our elected officials to do the right thing and get stuff done!

The Republican primaries are a few months away and we are learning of new candidates. I ask Republicans, established and new to town, please do your homework. We need to be electing qualified representatives concerned with managing growth and its implications on local infrastructure, schools and our community.

How do I define “qualified?” The candidate without an agenda. The person with a reputation for working in the community, not just criticizing those who do. Someone that wants Sandpoint to remain a community that helps our neighbors, supports our kids and our schools, a town where our kids can build a business and raise a family.

I think we can all agree that our conservative values in rural Idaho have always supported guns, that we have never taught critical race theory or supported it, and that we value life. However, candidates who wave the red flags of these issues; but cannot discuss solutions for unchecked growth, the exodus of our labor force, and the defunding of public education are candidates who seek to intentionally distract the voter. These are not the candidates that will protect our quality of life and will not serve the betterment of our communities.

BARBARA SCHRIBER

Ponderay

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