The Kootenai County Republican Party central committee dropped its effort last night to censure four local GOP legislators for voting in favor of a state-based health insurance exchange, after discovering it actually can’t do that, the Coeur d’Alene Press reports. Plus, central committee members said a censure attempt against half their GOP legislative delegation would make the committee look “foolish.”
Three of the four lawmakers – Reps. Frank Henderson, Luke Malek, and Ed Morse – were hoping to address the committee to defend their votes, but weren’t given the opportunity. “I wish we would have had our day in court,” Henderson told the Press after the meeting. “But they would not allow it, so we have to respect that.” Sen. John Goedde didn’t attend the meeting.
Malek issued a statement defending his vote, saying in part, “I think the resolution from this body asking Republican legislators to adopt a federal exchange betrayed every value voters who have entrusted Republicans with the power here in Kootenai County hold dear. That action wounded this party’s credibility in the eyes of those who value smaller government.”
You can read the Press’ full report here from reporter Jeff Selle.