Archive for October, 2010

Oct 31 2010

Different process, different results

Published by under Oregon

We may have, in another couple of days, a better idea of what to make of the mass of polls regionally and nationally this year. (Our skepticism about many of them, which has been growing some years, is so far unabated.)

Meantime, check out this from Survey USA, on their latest poll on the Oregon governor’s race:

In an election for Oregon governor today, 10/29/10, 4 days until votes are counted, former Democratic Governor John Kitzhaber edges Republican Chris Dudley, according to SurveyUSA polling for KATU-TV in Portland.

Among the subset of voters interviewed on their home telephones, Kitzhaber is nominally ahead, by 4 points. Among voters who do not have a home phone, interviewed on their cellphones, Kitzhaber leads by 15 points. When the groups are proportionally blended, it’s Kitzhaber 48%, Dudley 41%. Kitzhaber, who served as Governor from 1995 to 2003, has gained ground among men, where in 3 SurveyUSA polls since mid-September, Dudley had led by 19, by 11, and now by 3 points. Oregon conducts elections entirely by mail. Dudley, a former Portland Trailblazer, leads 5:3 among those voters who rarely vote in midterm elections but who tell SurveyUSA they are uniquely motivated to vote this year. In some states in 2010, those uniquely motivated voters are enough to elect the Republican. But not here: Kitzhaber leads 5:4 among those who vote more frequently. Those more enthusiastic about voting this year than in prior years vote 5:3 Republican. Those enthusiastic this year vote 2:1 Democrat. Among the 60% of voters who tell SurveyUSA they have already filled out their ballot, Kitzhaber leads by 11 points. Among those who say they are certain to return a ballot, the race is effectively even. Dudley would need to outperform Kitzhaber substantially on the not-yet returned ballots to overtake.

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Oct 29 2010

Check that ballot

Published by under Oregon

Send a package by FedEx or UPS and you can generally track its progress toward destination. Here’s one of the side-benefits of vote-by-mail (or drop box) in Oregon: You can do the same thing with your ballot. Our guess is that a lot of Oregonians probably don’t know they can do this.

The way is to hit a site called MyVote, associated with the secretary of state. Fill in your name, birth date and some other identifying information (it’s not a long form), and it’ll pull up a report on whether you’re registered and whether your ballot has been received by the county and state.

Mine says: “Ballot Status: November 2, 2010 General Election Your ballot was received on October 21, 2010.”

Might not be a bad idea for Oregonians to run that double-check to make sure they’re accounted for.

Not sure, though, how you’d make such a system work as a practical matter in a polling place state, where the bulk of people vote on the same day.

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Oct 28 2010

The Sandpoint agenda

Published by under Idaho

So what does the Tea Party crowd want?

Idaho Senator Mike Crapo heard a bit about that during a campaign stop in Sandpoint on Monday. Here’s a descriptive passage from the Daily Bee, which gives you an idea of what their expectations are and how Crapo (and presumably a number of other Republicans, including those like him not hard-pressed from the right) responded:

“Substantial conversation arose at speculation about the legitimacy of Obama’s citizenship and consequently, his presidency. Several attendees were eager to weigh in on the issue, one noting that if Obama’s presidency was invalid, all of his appointees would be deposed as well, resulting in a political coup. He then asked whether Crapo would support Obama’s impeachment if sufficient investigation occurred. Crapo replied that it was the House’s responsibility to impeach the president, while the Senate held the trial, and he would need more information before making a public statement.”

And you think Congress is ineffective now?

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Oct 27 2010

Change the subject

Published by under Idaho

When in politics Topic A becomes too uncomfortable, the solution is ordinarily this: Change the subject.

So consider Idaho state Representative Phil Hart, R-Athol, who this year is fortunate in facing only a write-in opponent on the November ballot (albeit one who may be gaining some traction).

Topic A is legal troubles involving obligations and payments that most people accept but Hart has not. Betsy Russell of the Spokane Spokesman-Review, who this year has broken a string of stories about Hart’s legal troubles, summarized one wing of them this way: “Hart owes more than $500,000 in back federal and state income taxes, penalties and interest, according to public records and liens; he’s been in a long fight with both the state Tax Commission and the Internal Revenue Service over the debt and has maintained that both federal and state income taxes are unconstitutional.” There is more, such as the recent revelation that in 1996 he took timber from state lands (enough to build his house with) without paying for it; he said last week he’ll pay, but that was only after the situation came to light through another Russell story.

So what should we make of all this? Last Thursday former U.S. Representative Bill Sali, long an ally of Hart’s, sent a letter (disclosed, again, via Russell) on the subject to fellow Republicans. His counsel, after saying in essence that Hart was wrongly accused (though none of the reported facts are in dispute):

“Why has Phil gotten so much media attention? In the legislature Phil has been an effective voice for freedom, less government and lower taxes. Apparently Betsy Russell can’t stand that and she wants to silence his voice.”

How many more politicians snagged in trouble are going to use this kind of dodge – it’s all the freedom-hating media’s fault – and get away with it? We may get some answers to that, in Idaho and far beyond, next week.

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Oct 27 2010

Turnout mapping

Published by under Washington

The Tacoma News Tribune is developing a series of updated maps showing voter turnout in various regions of Pierce County. Overall, the paper says turnout seems to be running a little higher than usual, which would track loosely with the very-high turnout predicted by Secretary of State Sam Reed.

What’s less clear is how this compares to earlier years, since the Washington voting system – which has been moving to and now basically is mail-in voting – has been changing the last few cycles.

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Oct 26 2010

Coming home

Published by under Idaho

This was not unpredictable – in fact, it was predicted: That big lead held by Democrat Walt Minnick in the 1st district U.S. House race in Idaho, over Republican Raul Labrador, has shrunk. Some weeks back, a poll commissioned by a group of Idaho newspapers put Minnick’s lead at about 10 points. The new one puts it at three (44% to 41%).

Of course it’s close. It was always going to be close, and it is not a lock. If the probabilities still narrowly favor Minnick, as they probably do, note the qualifier “narrowly.”

In the first district, somewhere around 45% of the voters just simply will not vote for the Democrat; Labrador could have sat home since May and pocketed that portion. (On the flip side, Minnick could take only around 30%, if that, for granted.) The key to the race is the next few percentage points, the relative handful that all of the sound and fury has been about. So it’ll be tight.

The rest of the polling is easily summarized: Republicans are way ahead everywhere else, moreso now than a month or two ago.

Their fellow party backers are coming home, completing their biennial flight patterns as they usually do about this time every other year.

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Oct 25 2010

Those who win

Published by under Oregon

Not all political commentary is or has to be acidic. Here’s a piece of writing for those running who wind up, next week, winning public office. It comes from someone who’s been there, Susan Morgan, a Douglas County commissioner (Republican) writing about some of what happens after the election, on a more personal level.

Personal mileage may vary, but there’s plenty of food for thought in this commissioner’s essay (grabbed from an e-mail from one of her constituents).

For folks running for political office, the evening of November 2nd will be life changing.

If you get elected, here are a few things you should know, including that it’s now too late to back out.

First, don’t be surprised if every member of your family stops going to the grocery store with you. Soon to be gone are the days when you could nick into Ray’s for a gallon of milk and be back on your way in a few minutes. I am continually amazed by the great conversations I have had with people in Sherm’s or Fred’s exploring their opinions and sharing experiences. Almost everyone is very pleasant and interesting to talk with. First my kids, and now my grandkids, have spent significant time examining things like soup labels, waiting patiently for me to move to the next aisle. Now, letting my family know that I’m going grocery shopping leads to a flurry of suddenly remembered tasks that urgently need attention.

Second, don’t be surprised if you gain weight. Being elected to public office involves eating out a lot. After your first term of office, approximately half you body weight will be made up of prime rib, salmon fillets and chicken breasts. The other half of your body weigh will be comprised of my personal favorite: pot luck meals. I absolutely love the events where everyone brings a dish and they are all spread out on a long table. No one ever brings anything bad. In fact, every dish at a pot luck meal is fabulous, usually the chefs’ signature dish.

Third, your definition of a great evening will change. With so many events and meetings that are scheduled for after work when everyone is available, you won’t spend much time at home. Some days are long, especially when you start at a 7am breakfast meeting, and don’t punch the button on the garage door opener until around 9 in the evening. Coming home at 5:30, donning that funky sweat suit, and passing time hunched over a family game board, or reading a good novel starts to sound pretty exciting. Even weeding the garden starts looking good.

Finally, if you are part of an election campaign you are running in overdrive right now, focused on November 2nd, around 8:10 pm when the first set of returns come out. My advice to you is to quit reading this and get back to work.

I wish all candidates the very best, and thank you immensely for stepping up to public service. I know some of you will be disappointed on the 2nd, but I don’t think you will regret your experiences on the campaign trail.

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Oct 23 2010

One easy way to save government bucks

Published by under Oregon

Governments all over are scrambling to find ways to save money while coming as close as they can to providing the services people expect. Here’s one. As a part of overall government expenses it’s not large. But it’s an option that could save taxpayer money while impairing service not a bit.

The Oregonian has an article about it today: “Multnomah County officials have decided to dump Microsoft in favor of Google, expecting to shave as much as $600,000 a year from the county budget.”

MultCo is apparently the first governmental entity in the Northwest to do this, though a number of other metro areas around the country have begun to take the step.

They could go even further, since there are some small costs associated with Google: They could go to all-open source, and pay not software costs at all.

So ask yourself: Why aren’t more of them doing it?

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Oct 22 2010

“Are American Voters Competent?”

Published by under Washington

Talk about a pertinent question.

Which is not meant to suggest automatically an answer that they are not. But it does pose a very useful question about what competence in voting – casting an informed, reasoned set of votes on a ballot – means.

Comes up here after we spotted this announcement from Washington State University:

Washington State University’s Thomas S. Foley Institute for Public Policy and Public Service presents another public lecture of the Coffee and Politics series titled, “Are American Voters Competent? Information and the Failure of Good Intentions” at 10:30 a.m. on Oct. 27 in CUE 518.

Arthur Lupia, Hal R. Varian professor of political science and research at the University of Michigan, examines how information and institutions affect policy and politics. Lupia will discuss current research and its relevance for questions about what voters can and cannot do.

He studies how people make decisions when they lack information on topics such as voting and elections, civic competence and legislative-bureaucratic relations.

If you’re anywhere near Pullman and decide to go, let us know what you hear.

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Oct 21 2010

WA Senate, outside spending

Published by under Washington

Candidate campaign treasuries are being matched and even swamped by the outside money pouring into campaigns.

Look at this page from the Center for Responsive Politics, on outside money in the Washington race for U.S. Senate:

Bottom line … On Democrat Patty Murray, $7.3 million spent, of which $5.7 million was in opposition in and $285,497 in favor. On Republican Dino Rossi, a total of $4,097,532, with $758,117 in favor of him, and $3,339,415 against him.

Which has the net effect, among other thing, of making our politics even uglier than it already is. Wonderful.

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Oct 20 2010

Obama at Portland, this time

Published by under Oregon

Obama Kitzhaber
President Barack Obama and former Governor John Kitzhaber at Portland/Kitzhaber campaign

Barack Obama the candidate had it two years ago when he visited Oregon, and he still has it – his campaigning orating skills are undiminished. His speech at Portland tonight, arranged principally to help Democratic gubernatorial candidate John Kitzhaber, was a solid rabble-rouser, which had to be exactly what the Oregon Democrats wanted.

The bulk of his talk was national in scope, making the national Democratic pitch, solidly partisan. But that’s what Democrats have needed, broadly beyond Kitzhaber’s own close campaign. Energizing the base is what Democrats need, and an event like this could send some electricity through the Portland Democratic community.

Obama’s speech included some familiar elements, like the bit about Republicans driving the car into the ditch. Some of the bits and pieces were a little less known, as when he said about Republicans that “the basis of their campaign is amnesia.” The speech was a collection of pieces, but it built powerfully toward the end.

He had some Oregon-specific material too. He did the classic politician bit (treated as a joke), about having a friend who was a Ducks fan and a brother-in-law coaching the Beavers, and saying he liked them both. He did a solid pitch for Kitzhaber – “Let’s talk about this governor’s race for a second. This should not be a difficult choice” – and ran through a number of specifics about Kitzhaber.

For his part, Kitzhaber mainly delivered a short campaign talk and then an introduction of Obama. That was a little more than just a pro forma introduction, though; he laced in specific praise about economic and health care parts of the Obama record, and expressed his support for them. He backed away from nothing.

(The congressional presence was, mostly. Both senators were there, and two House members, David Wu and Earl Blumenauer. A third Democrat whose district was close by but still a little further out, Kurt Schrader, apparently wasn’t there; was that a deliberate move tactically, or just a matter of, it wasn’t his district? The event was held within Bluemnauer’s district, and Wu’s was only about a mile away.)

It was well executed. It felt in all like an effort to bring several Democratic pieces together, with the hope significant juice flows as a result. Maybe it will.

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Oct 20 2010

State storage

Published by under Idaho

Would love to hear Governor C.L. “Butch” Otter’s justification – and as chairman and a voting member of the state Land Board, he is directly involved – in this:

A purchase and business venture by the state of Idaho, unveiled by David Frazier‘s Boise Guardian web site. Assuming the data is correct, it means the state of Idaho has gotten into the storage business in competition with a number of local private businesses.

Engaged in by the unanimously conservative, Republican, small-government, pro-private enterprise members of the Idaho state land board.

UPDATE Correcting the name of the web site (Boise Guardian), per a note from Frazier. Who also notes this: “FYI, guv and AG spokesmouths are all telling me it is the DUTY of the land board to maximize the return on investment and if that means getting into the retail storage business, so be it. It appears to be totally legal, but certainly not a good move from the standpoint of business owners or local governments that lose the tax revenues.”

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Oct 19 2010

Someone else’s prosperity

Published by under Washington

We shouldn’t let the Concerned Taxpayers of America go without pointing out in the involvement in another Northwest congressional race of Americans for Prosperity.

Americans for Prosperity is, one detailed study says, “the third largest recipient of funding from the Koch Family Foundations, behind the Cato Institute and the George Mason University Foundation. Before 2003, when the AFP was still named the Citizens for a Sound Economy Foundation, it received $18,460,912 in funding. 84% of that funding came from the Koch Family Foundations ($12,906,712) and the Scaife Family Foundations ($2,510,000). Koch Family Foundations is funded by Koch Industries. According to Forbes, Koch Industries is the second largest privately-held company, and the largest privately owned energy company, in the United States. Koch industries has made its money in the oil business, primarily oil refining. Presently, it holds stakes in pipelines, refineries, fertilizer, forest products, and chemical technology.”

Big money from major national corporations, being dumped in massive fashion into the Washington 3rd House district race – to the campaign of Republican Jaime Herrera. (Her opponent is Democrat Denny Heck.)

The Horse’s Ass blog points out the Prosperity group is “contributing $5,000 directly to her campaign, and spending at least another $282,000 … attacking her Democratic opponent, Denny Heck. It is the ultimate insult to WA-03 voters; first the New York-based Kochs make millions closing local mills and outsourcing jobs, and now they’re spending a portion of their profits to purchase themselves another congresswoman. You know… the free market at work.”

As a side note, little of any of this would matter if American voters did the single smartest and simplest thing they could do: Totally ignore all political advertising. But until they do, or until some meaningful reform from the current insanity takes place, elections may be simply up for auction.

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Oct 19 2010

All those concerned taxpayers

Published by under Oregon

Remember the Concerned Taxpayers of America, the group running the basically anonymous slimy television spots against Representative Peter DeFazio? The guys whose identity DeFazio tried to find out by personally walking over their headquarters (and getting stonewalled, on video)?

The Washington Post pulled the paperwork that now establishes who this broad-based alliance of concerned American taxpayers, who have been pouring hundreds of thousands of dollars into negative TV spots in Oregon’s 4th district, actually are:

Two guys. The owner of Daniel G. Schuster Inc., which operated a concrete company, and spent $300,000; and Robert Mercer, a hedge fund manager from New York, who spent $200,000.

Just thought the people of Oregon’s 4th would like to know.

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Oct 19 2010

We got ours

Published by under Oregon

The ballot has arrived

We see via Facebook reports from some people in Oregon who’ve not yet gotten their ballots. We’ll hope those arrive soon.

Ours in fact have arrived in the mail. (A pitch: Vote by mail is more than just convenient. It allows for reflective and researched decisions. Not that everyone will avail themselves of that option, but it at least allows for it more than standing in a booth where you have to make your decisions right now.)

Ours will be back in the voting box later today or tomorrow at the latest. How about yours?

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Oct 18 2010

Upending a local structure?

Published by under Oregon

Context. Context. Where it hit some people’s attention was in the peculiar one-sentence press release from the Newberg, Oregon, chamber of commerce: A member of the government affairs committee had been expelled. Peculiar, but would it matter to anyone but the chamber?

If you get more than that one sentence, a big ball of twine starts to unravel. As it happens, the McMinnville News Register was on to the story days before the expulsion, and last weekend ran a big, and fascinating, article about the politics behind it.

Briefly, the expellee was Yamhill County Commissioner Leslie Lewis, a long-time major figure in county politics (years ago she rose to leadership in the state legislature) – and a key supporter this year of commission candidate Mary Starrett, a very conservative (former Constitution Party candidate) who is trying to unseat incumbent Mary Stern, who has a good deal of Democratic support. The Newberg chamber is a conservative group (that city probably will be Starrett’s major base in the election), but at a recent meeting there, Lewis crossed a line.

From the News-Register: “Yamhill County Commissioner Leslie Lewis is under criminal investigation by the state Department of Justice for allegedly secretly videotaping one or more candidates during private Chehalem Valley Chamber of Commerce endorsement interviews in Newberg and then passing that tape on to others. The taping was allegedly done in April, but just came to light with the posting of a heavily edited excerpt from Commissioner Mary Stern’s endorsement interview on YouTube and a conservative Republican website.”

Now the state attorney general’s office is investigating in what is described as a criminal investigation. Protesters today called on Lewis to resign. (Democratic protesters, to be sure, but they’d never had a basis for such a demand before.) And Lewis’ base, the heart of the Newberg business community – the mayor among others is on the panel – has turned on her.

A local matter to a considerable degree. But we wouldn’t be surprised if, two or four years from now, this incident wound up having some real structural impact on the politics of this county of almost 100,000.

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Oct 18 2010

This week in the Digests

Published by under Digests

weekly Digest

Yes, it’s nearing the end of campaign season, and the economy is still in the tank. Those facts were reflected in this week’s Digests, but so was a lot else.

Some of the highlights, for example, from the Idaho edition: “Negotiations yield health care trust; More comment on water quality plan; UI research outpost at Post Falls approved.” Not that these made big headlines elsewhere. (We approach “the narrative” in a different way.) From Washington: “New ferry launches; More support on Alaskan Way? Corrections union okays COLA forbearance.” A little off the beaten path.

As a reminder: We’re now publishing weekly editions of the Public Affairs Digests – for Idaho, Washington and Oregon – moving from a monthly to a weekly rundown of what’s happening. And we’re taking it all-electronic: The print edition will be moving to e-mail.

That means we can include more information, and get it out a lot faster: The weekly Digests will be in your in-box first thing Monday morning. If you subscribe, of course: That’s $59 a year, for 50 issues and the yearbook. Yes, including the yearbook. The Idaho Yearbook, which we published for years up to 2002, will return early in 2011 – in printed book form – and Digest subscribers get it for free with their subscription. And the Oregon and Washington yearbooks will be coming out at the same time.

If you’d like to take a look at one of the new weekly Digests, here’s a link to the Idaho edition, to the Oregon edition and to the Washington edition. If you’d like to subscribe, here are the links (through to PayPal) for Idaho, for Oregon and for Washington.

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WASHINGTON-OREGON-IDAHO Our acclaimed weekly e-pubs: 35-45 pages Monday mornings getting you on top of your state. Samples available. Contact us by email or by phone at (208)484-0460.



This will be one of the most talked-about Idaho books in Idaho this season: 14 years after its last edition, Ridenbaugh Press has released a list of 100 influential Idahoans. Randy Stapilus, the editor and publisher of the Idaho Weekly Briefing and author of four earlier similar lists, has based this one on levels of overall influence in the state – and freedom of action and ability to influence development of the state – as of the start of 2015.
100 Influential Idahoans 2015. By Randy Stapilus; published by Ridenbaugh Press, Carlton, Oregon. 202 pages. Softcover. List price $16.95.
100 Influential Idahoans 2015 page.

100 Influential Idahoans 2015
"Essentially, I write in the margins of motherhood—and everything else—then I work these notes into a monthly column about what it’s like raising my two young boys. Are my columns funny? Are they serious? They don’t fit into any one box neatly. ... I’ve won awards for “best humorous column” though I actually write about subjects as light as bulimia, bullying, birthing plans and breastfeeding. But also bon-bons. And barf, and birthdays." Raising the Hardy Boys: They Said There Would Be Bon-Bons. by Nathalie Hardy; Ridenbaugh Press, Carlton, Oregon. 238 pages. Softcover. $15.95.
Raising the Hardy Boys page.



"Not a day passes that I don’t think about Vietnam. Sometimes its an aroma or just hearing the Vietnamese accent of a store clerk that triggers a memory. Unlike all too many soldiers, I never had to fire a weapon in anger. Return to civilian life was easy, but even after all these years away from the Army and Vietnam I find the experience – and knowledge – continue to shape my life daily."
Drafted! Vietnam in War and in Peace. by David R. Frazier; Ridenbaugh Press, Carlton OR. 188 pgs. Softcover. $15.95.
The DRAFTED! page.


Many critics said it could not be done - and it often almost came undone. Now the Snake River Basin Adjudication is done, and that improbable story is told here by three dozen of the people most centrally involved with it - judges, attorneys, legislators, engineers, water managers, water users and others in the room when the decisions were made.
Through the Waters: An Oral History of the Snake River Basin Adjudication. edited by the Idaho State Bar Water Law Section and Randy Stapilus; Ridenbaugh Press, Carlton, Oregon. 300 pages. Softcover. $16.95.

Oregon Governor Vic Atiyeh died on July 20, 2014; he was widely praised for steady leadership in difficult years. Writer Scott Jorgensen talks with Atiyeh and traces his background, and what others said about him.
Conversations with Atiyeh. by W. Scott Jorgensen; Ridenbaugh Press, Carlton, Oregon. 140 pages. Softcover. $14.95.

"Salvation through public service and the purging of awful sights seen during 1500 Vietnam War helicopter rescue missions before an untimely death, as told by a devoted brother, leaves a reader pondering life's unfairness. A haunting read." Chris Carlson, Medimont Reflections. ". . . a vivid picture of his brother Jerry’s time as a Medivac pilot in Vietnam and contrasts it with the reality of the political system . . . through the lens of a blue-collar, working man made good." Mike Kennedy.
One Flaming Hour: A memoir of Jerry Blackbird. by Mike Blackbird; Ridenbaugh Press, Carlton, Oregon. 220 pages. Softcover. $15.95.
See the ONE FLAMING HOUR page.

Back in Print! Frank Church was one of the leading figures in Idaho history, and one of the most important U.S. senators of the last century. From wilderness to Vietnam to investigating the CIA, Church led on a host of difficult issues. This, the one serious biography of Church originally published in 1994, is back in print by Ridenbaugh Press.
Fighting the Odds: The Life of Senator Frank Church. LeRoy Ashby and Rod Gramer; Ridenbaugh Press, Carlton, Oregon. 800 pages. Softcover. $24.95.


by Stephen Hartgen
The personal story of the well-known editor, publisher and state legislator's travel west from Maine to Idaho. A well-written account for anyone interested in Idaho, journalism or politics.
JOURNEY WEST: A memoir of journalism and politics, by Stephen Hartgen; Ridenbaugh Press, Carlton, Oregon. $15.95, here or at (softcover)



NEW EDITIONS is the story of the Northwest's 226 general-circulation newspapers and where your newspaper is headed.
New Editions: The Northwest's Newspapers as They Were, Are and Will Be. Steve Bagwell and Randy Stapilus; Ridenbaugh Press, Carlton, Oregon. 324 pages. Softcover. (e-book ahead). $16.95.
See the NEW EDITIONS page.

How many copies?


The Field Guide is the reference for the year on Oregon politics - the people, the districts, the votes, the issues. Compiled by a long-time Northwest political writer and a Salem Statesman-Journal political reporter.
OREGON POLITICAL FIELD GUIDE 2014, by Randy Stapilus and Hannah Hoffman; Ridenbaugh Press, Carlton, Oregon. $15.95, available right here or through (softcover)


by Randy Stapilus and Marty Trillhaase is the reference for the year on Idaho Politics - the people, the districts, the votes, the issues. Written by two of Idaho's most veteran politcal observers.
IDAHO POLITICAL FIELD GUIDE 2014, by Randy Stapilus and Marty Trillhaase; Ridenbaugh Press, Carlton, Oregon. $15.95, available right here or through (softcover)

without compromise
WITHOUT COMPROMISE is the story of the Idaho State Police, from barely-functioning motor vehicles and hardly-there roads to computer and biotechnology. Kelly Kast has spent years researching the history and interviewing scores of current and former state police, and has emerged with a detailed and engrossing story of Idaho.


How many copies?
The Old West saw few murder trials more spectacular or misunderstood than of "Diamondfield" Jack Davis. After years of brushes with the noose, Davis was pardoned - though many continued to believe him guilty. Max Black has spent years researching the Diamondfield saga and found startling new evidence never before uncovered - including the weapon and one of the bullets involved in the crime, and important documents - and now sets out the definitive story. Here too is Black's story - how he found key elements, presumed lost forever, of a fabulous Old West story.
See the DIAMONDFIELD page for more.

Medimont Reflections Chris Carlson's Medimont Reflections is a followup on his biography of former Idaho Governor Cecil Andrus. This one expands the view, bringing in Carlson's take on Idaho politics, the Northwest energy planning council, environmental issues and much more. The Idaho Statesman: "a pull-back-the-curtain account of his 40 years as a player in public life in Idaho." Available here: $15.95 plus shipping.
See the Medimont Reflections page  
Idaho 100, about the 100 most influential people ever in Idaho, by Randy Stapilus and Martin Peterson is now available. This is the book about to become the talk of the state - who really made Idaho the way it is? NOW AN E-BOOK AVAILABLE THROUGH KINDLE for just $2.99. Or, only $15.95 plus shipping.

Idaho 100 by Randy Stapilus and Martin Peterson. Order the Kindle at For the print edition, order here or at Amazon.