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Posts published in “Day: May 17, 2007”

Radio wars/Idaho

Here's something lawsuits are sometimes good for: Providing insight, shining halogen lights on sometimes significant places we might not otherwise see.

The Idaho Radio blog has a fine post about the conflict between Citadel Broadcasting and Peak Broadcasting, both significant players in Idaho radio (as predecessor and successor), drawn from court documents over their battle. The documents suggest an insiders' view of radio programming and competition in the Boise market.

Interest from Bates

Alan Bates

Alan Bates

In our post yesterday on the emerging (ever so gradually) Oregon U.S. Senate race, we noted that state Senator Alan Bates, D-Medford, has been mentioned as a Senate prospect but hadn't much indicated whether he actually was interested.

Turns out he is. Today, Blue Oregon has pulled together material from the Ashland Daily Tidings and other sources about Bates' interest in the race, which is evidently quite real. The Tidings reported "Bates said he's been considering a run against Smith, Oregon's two-term junior United States senator, for six months, but said he did not want to announce his interest prematurely, hoping that 'somebody with a better chance and who was better known' would emerge." He went public after the last of the Democratic U.S. House members said they didn't plan to run.

Bates described himself as a "dark horse," and that may be good positioning, but his assets are stronger than that suggests. He is an experienced candidate, running strongly in areas where his party is not in the majority, and certainly not running as a Republican-lite candidate; it helped that in the Medford area he was a well-known public figure and professional leader long before entering the legislature. He became third in line in Senate Democratic leadership - almost immediately after moving from the House to the Senate. He has good campaigning presence and skills. He's respected as a legislator, and at Salem has taken on some highly ambitious projects (including, with fellow Senator Ben Westlund, a health care plan in Senate Bill 329 that could be the most important single piece of legislation in the Northwest this decade - if it passes).

And his rhetoric is clear and strong: His blasts at Smith over Iraq, for example, is all a Democrat would want of a Senate nominee.

He said he will announce a decision shortly after the legislature adjourns (which is expected for late June).

An immigration backboard

Common sense tells us that there's no such thing as a "solution" on the immigration issue. The rate and type of inflow, our nation's needs and our ability to control travel are ever-changing. The most we can hope for is an ongoing monitor and adjustment, developed outside the context of panic and hysteria the topic seems to produce in so many areas.

Northwest politics likely will be affected, then, by the new compromise immigration bill in the U.S. Senate. Idaho Senator Larry Craig, who has worked with a wide variety of senators on immigration (one of his best allies has been senior Senate Democrat Robert Byrd) offered this: "While there is no way to please everyone on an issue as complex and divisive as this one, the legislation the Senate will be debating next week has many provisions that will promote our economy, protect the security of our country and its citizens, and deal fairly with both citizens and non-citizens alike. I believe this bill will serve the interests and needs of Idaho and the nation well."

The bill will not, however, much satisfy the anti-immigrant community. You can expect to be hearing a lot more about this soon.