Various senators have questioned Idaho Gov. Dirk Kempthorne about Interior Department issues in their own states, from Hawaii to South Carolina, some of which he had to delay comment on until he learned more. So when Idaho Sen. Larry Craig got his turn to ask questions, he asked some about Idaho – including a final softball question: “What is your very favorite place on a public piece of property in Idaho?”
Kempthorne responded, “I have many, but it’s probably in Ponderosa State Park.” He recalled a time, back in 1992, when he and wife Patricia had reserved a campsite in the scenic state campground along the shores of Payette Lake to take their two young kids camping – but then he became a candidate for the U.S. Senate, and that camping trip was canceled. Those kids are now grown, and were in the audience watching their Dad’s confirmation hearing. “We missed a lot of camping trips because of the public service path I’ve taken,” Kempthorne told the Senate committee. “Maybe I can help more families access and enjoy and realize what it means to be a family in the great outdoors of America.”
Betsy Z. Russell covers Idaho news from The Spokesman-Review's bureau in Boise.
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