"No experiment can be more interesting than that we are now trying, and which we trust will end in establishing the fact, that man may be governed by reason and truth. Our first object should therefore be, to leave open to him all the avenues to truth. The most effectual hitherto found, is the freedom of the press. It is, therefore, the first shut up by those who fear the investigation of their actions." --Thomas Jefferson to John Tyler, 1804.

The Geddes departure

Not a lot more to say about the word that Robert Geddes of Soda Springs, who has been president pro tem of the Idaho Senate for a decade (longer than anyone else), won’t be running for that leadership job again next month. (To avoid redundancy: All the legislators referred to in this post are Republicans.)

His successor might be Brent Hill of Rexburg, and he seems to have Geddes’ personal nod. Or maybe Russ Fulcher of Meridian; both of them seem to have substantial bases of support in the caucus. Could be another option as well.

Everyone involved in this is “conservative” in any usual sense. Probably Hill would be the choice more moderates would find relatively comfortable; over the years, he has seemed to be more detail-oriented and far-ranging and less strictly ideological in his thinking than most Idaho Republican legislators.

What’s important to bear in mind is the overall shift of the Republican caucus, and the probability of challenges by more-ideological members to two other long-running members of leadership, Bart Davis and Joe Stegner (who was denounced as a “Democrat!” in the last Republican state convention). The caucus membership has changed.

How to define it? Probably like this: Starting with the next session, the Idaho Senate likely will be much closer to a mirror image of the Idaho House, and legislation passing the House is less likely to be stalled or stopped in the Senate (and vice versa). Bot chambers have been called “conservative” for many years, but that hasn’t meant exactly the same thing in each. In 2011, it probably will.

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One Comment

  1. fortboise said:

    And it means the “conservative” legislature is like going to be a lot more activist. Or reactionary.

    Given that Idaho is already what America was (as they like to say), now what? How much more backward can it get?

    November 23, 2010

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