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Posts published in “Day: September 20, 2014”

Who gives, who gets

idaho RANDY

This is a call to do your own political investigations.

If you have an Internet connection, you can do it from where you are right now.

In the next few weeks you'll see more news stories about campaign finance contributions and spending, since reporting deadlines are coming up. For Idaho state races, campaign finance reports – the “pre-general” - will be due at the Secretary of State's office on October 10. (The next after that will be due October 28.) For federal, congressional, races, the next big one, the quarterly report, will be due at the Federal Election Commission on October 15. Spend a little time looking these over, and you can track the money trail yourself .

I spend some time each cycle checking out this information. You can too.

The secretary of state's web site has an old-fashioned look, but the information is there and easy to get. Go to, which is about statewide constitutional offices, legislature and political action committees (and spending on ballot issues too). The information base here really is massive, covering elections back to 2000. Lobbyist reporting information is available through this page too.

The state database, allowing for name lookups and the like, is only available through 2012. But scanned copies of the reports filed by the candidates are available right away; click on the “2014” link. Following links in the next couple of pages takes you to pdf scanned copies of candidate reports. At present, the most recent are the “post-primary” reports (through May); the October 10 reports, which will bring the money picture up to present, should be available before a month from now.

Pull a candidate's scanned report and you get what looks a little like a tax form, with spaces filled in with numbers, names and, often, addresses. You'll see the amounts raised and spent (and still in the bank), and individual donors and recipients. In the most recent report for Otter for Governor, for example, you find donor number one was Paul Anderson of Potlatch, who donated $100; he was followed by CenturyLink Idaho PAC at $5,000, and on down through the pages. Some of the names are familiar, some not, but all are linked to the campaign with cash.

The official place for federal – congressional this year, but including presidential – campaign reports is the Federal Election Commission, through their “disclosure portal” at (more…)

On the front pages


Enterovirus has become a substantial halth issue around the Northwest, and it was the biggest news story in Washington today. (There have been major headlines this week about instances in Oregon and Idaho too.) It isn't new. Wikipedia notes that "Enteroviruses affect millions of people worldwide each year, and are often found in the respiratory secretions (e.g., saliva, sputum, or nasal mucus) and stool of an infected person. Historically, poliomyelitis was the most significant disease caused by an enterovirus, poliovirus." We may be seeing more specificity in future reports, since the term "enterovirus" covers a lot of territory.

Here’s what public affairs news made the front page of newspapers in the Northwest today, excluding local crime, features and sports stories. (Newspaper names contracted with location)

Redfish Lake fish numbers rising (Boise Statesman, IF Post Register)
Several treasurer's issues cleared (Boise Statesman)
St Joe's hospital may sever from parent (Lewiston Tribune)
Silver says treasurer questions remain (Moscow News)
Old UI Pike House will be demolished (Moscow News)
Audit finds treasurer problems corrected (Nampa Press Tribune)
More discussion about tiered teacher licenses (Nampa Press Tribune)
Canyon Co land use lawsuit dismissed (Nampa Press Tribune)
Idaho income still behind rest of nation (Pocatello Journal)
Democrats encouraging Latino voting (TF Times News)

UO gets $10 million donation for structure (Eugene Register Guard)
Eugene cops sting many sex predators (Eugene Register Guard)
State and Klamath battling over water rules (KF Herald & News)
Pot shop dealer on probation (Medford Tribune)
PGG ends retail business, searches for buyer (Pendleton E Oregonian)
Gas prices may be dropping (Portland Oregonian)
NE Portland pot dispensary location opposed (Portland Oregonian)
Scammers hitting mid-valley area hard (Salem Statesman Journal)

Restoration of some Sound waterways (Bremerton Sun)
Kitsap Co begins its budget discussions (Bremerton Sun)
Findings of enterovirus in Washington (Seattle Times, Everett Herald, Vancouver Columbian)
Gas prices may fall in the fall (Longview News)
Asphalt plant operations draw objections (Olympians)
Congressional delegation supports military action (Olympian)
Seattle gets new transportation director (Seattle Times)
Nordstrom launches first store in Canada (Seattle Times)
Spokane Catholic archbishop moves to Chicago (Spokane Spokesman)