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Huckleberries Online

Posts tagged: Rick Currie

Sheriff Rocky Sues Kootenai County

John Condon General Manager of North Idaho Maritime talked about the procedure they used to barge the log home formerly owned by Duane Hagadone from Casco Bay to Cougar Bay on Lake Coeur d'Alene on May 8 2008. The house was split into two pieces for the move, this is the first of the 2 halves to be transported. (SR file photo: Kathy Plonka)

Kootenai County Sheriff Rocky Watson has filed a lawsuit against the county and current and past officials, with accusations of misconduct and officials acting on personal vendettas. The suit, filed Nov. 7 in District Court, is directed at the county, past Commissioner Rick Currie and Community Development Director Scott Clark.  Both Rocky and his wife, Mary, are listed as the plaintiffs. Requesting damages of more than $10,000, the lawsuit states the county was wrong and brought on unnecessary fees for the couple when it halted the relocation of the Watsons' home by barge. The suit also claims the county violated the plaintiffs' rights in stopping road work they were conducting/Alecia Warren, Coeur d'Alene Press. More here.

Question: Isn't there something curious re: a sitting sheriff suing Kootenai County?

Huckleberries Hears …

Newly elected Kootenai County commissioner Jai Nelson applauds during the swearing in of her fellow commissioners during the ceremony at the Kootenai County administration building in Coeur d'Alene on Monday. (SR photo: Kathy Plonka)

… that Jai Nelson had 3 interesting well-wishers after she was sworn as a county commissioner this morning. Three burly men, dressed in camo fatigues, made their way to the front where they were greeted warmly by Nelson and posed for a photograph with her. From a distance, they looked as though they might have been part of the surprisingly large group of Kootenai County sheriff's deputies at the back of the room. But a Berry Picker noticed their embroidered tags on their chests as the passed by: “Idaho Militia.” Nelson, of course, isn't responsible for those who want to congratulate her in a situation like that. By the way, she and new Coroner Debbie Wilkey were the only ones to be sworn in with a Bible they'd brought to the ceremonies.

Currie, Piazza Leave Office

Item: Currie says goodbye: Commissioner, county staff reflect on 8 years in office/Alecia Warren, Coeur d'Alene Press

More Info: Friday was the bittersweet last day for Currie, the chair of the county commissioners who lost the race for re-election last November to Jai Nelson. It was also the finale for Piazza, commissioner for four years, who was defeated by Dan Green. Disappointing, Currie admits, but life goes on.

Question: How will Rick Currie & Rich Piazza be remembered for their years as county commissioners?

How Many Currie, Griffiths Write-Ins?

I believe that Rick Currie and Howard Griffiths would win election today, if their names were on the ballot. But their names aren’t on the ballots. So I doubt that an upset is possible. Here at Huckleberries Online, we’re clued into the nuances of these races. But a lot of individuals simply haven’t paid attention to the election until this last weekend (if even then). Before the votes are counted tonight, I’d like to get you on record by posing this question:

Question: What percentage of the votes with write-ins Rick Currie (vs. Jai Nelson) and Howard Griffiths (vs. Phil Hart) win?

Nelson, Currie Spar To The End

Item: Commissioner race heats up with write-in: Currie, loser in Idaho primary, fighting back/Alison Boggs, SR

More Info: Nelson labeled it “sad” that Currie has chosen to “go down this road. I think it speaks for itself.” Via e-mail, Nelson said the supporter in question (Larry Spencer) has not been involved in her campaign since the middle of the primary. She said at that time “confusion arose” about the placement of a campaign sign and she “asked him to conclude his efforts.” “Since that time,” she said, “he has not been involved in my campaign effort.”

DFO: I found it strange that Nelson elected to answer questions from the Spokesman-Review via e-mail; yet found time to come to the SR office to be interviewed on camera by KHQ.

BP: Nelson KO’d Currie On KVNI

A Berry Picker e-mails this to Hucks HQ re: the appearance on KVNI radio this morning by GOPrimary winner Jai Nelson and write-in candidate Rick Currie, the commission incumbent: “Jai was articulate, professional and informed. Rick came on the phone about five minutes later, totally out of breath and obviously furious. He ranted about things Jai had said pertaining to the budget etc. but was almost incoherent in his ranting. At the very end it was like he remembered he had planned remarks and rushed through those, barely remembering to tell people they had to write his name in. If anyone was learning about the candidates for the first time from the radio this morning, Jai would have won by a knockout.”

Question: Did anyone else listen in this morning to the 15-minute interviews of Jai Nelson and Rick Currie on KVNI radio? Reaction?

HBO Poll: Currie Easily Beats Nelson

  • Weekend Poll: In a surprise, incumbent Kootenai County Commissioner Rick Currie, a write-in candidate, defeated Jai Nelson handily. Currie attracted 164 of 278 votes (59%) from Hucks Nation to beat GOPrimary winner Jai Nelson in our straw poll. Nelson won 72 of 278 (26%) votes. 38 of 278 (13.67%) said they don’t plan to vote for either candidate. And 4 people were undecided.
  • Today’s Poll: Who will get your vote in the House District 4A race between incumbent Republican Marge Chadderdon and Democrat Mike Bullard?

Nelson To Pass On CdA Tribe Forum

Huckleberries hears … that GOPrimary winner Jai Nelson (shown Friday at Spirit Lake City Park for GOP bus tour) has turned down an invitation from the Coeur d’Alene Indian Tribe to appear at a candidates’ forum at the Wellness Center in Plummer at 7 p.m. Wednesday. Write-in candidate Rick Currie has accepted an invitation. Seems the invitations went out late. So Nelson can’t be blamed for having a conflict this late in the campaign season. Still, it would have been good to see a debate between Currie and her. Others invited to the forum are: Benewah County Commissioner Christina Crawford, D-Tensed and her challenger Phil Lampert, R-Plummer; Rep. Dick Harwood, St. Maries-R, and his opponent Jon Ruggles, Shoshone-D; and Incumbent Mary Lou Shepherd, D-Wallace and her opponent Shannon McMillian, R-Wallace are expected to attend the event.

HBO Poll: Currie Or Nelson?

  • Wednesday Poll (didn’t have one Thursday): It’s obvious that the Wednesday poll got hijacked. It shows that 235 of 326 (72%) of the votes were for Democrat Keith Allred. 84 of 326 (26%) were for incumbent Republican Butch Otter. Independent Pro-Life got 5 votes, and Independent Jana Kemp received 2. Otter should win Kootenai County easily.
  • Today’s Poll: Who do you favor in the contested Kootenai County commissioner race: write-in candidate Rick Currie or Jai Nelson?

Realtors Endorse Write-In Currie

In an unusual move, the Coeur d’Alene Realtors Association has endorsed a write-in candidate, Commissioner Rick Currie. In an e-mail to members, Realtors CEO Rick Vernon writes: “Rick is always willing to hear our concerns and has balanced our input with other voices in the community.  He is a voice of reason in the complex development of the Kootenai County Comprehensive Plan. …  As you are probably aware the primary vote was split almost equally among the three candidates. Chris Fillios has asked his supporters in the primary to also support Rick Currie. This would represent over 60% of the voters for this position who voted in the primary.”

Question: What do you make of the Realtors endorsing a write-in candidate?

Nelson Campaign Blamed For Slander

In an op-ed piece in the Coeur d’Alene Press, Linda Fillios (wife of former county commission candidate Chris Fillios) writes today: “I am deeply disturbed by the slanderous politics in the District 2 Kootenai County Republican Primary race. Rick Currie, the incumbent, Jai Nelson, a candidate for office and my husband Chris Fillios ran for this seat. Each received more than 30 percent of the Primary vote during the campaign. During the Primary, a member of Jai Nelson’s campaign team called certain people in the county and specifically started rumors of a sex scandal involving my husband, Chris. You have asked Republicans to back the elected candidates in this November election. I strongly support our Republican candidates, who were elected, but I cannot allow slander to become a truth and I cannot support Jai Nelson.” More here.

Question: What do you think state GOP Chairman Norm Semanko will do with this hot potato?

Aerodynamic: Who Is Real Jai Nelson?

Aerodynamic: NO, you don’t need to cross out the printed name. Simply mark the box corresponding to the write-in and enter the name. Shoshone Conservative, Currie is not creating a boogeyman. If you’ve followed the events of this race going back to the Primary, you’ll find may issues surrounding the conduct of Jai Nelson’s campaign, specifically: misrepresentations (lies?) and her extensive use of Larry Spencer. Who uses Spencer except one who seeks victory at any price. Currie is a known. Who is the real Jai Nelson?

Question: Have you ever voted for a write-in before? Care to say for whom?

Check Out Rick Currie’s Tile Ad

I just clicked on write-in Rick Currie’s tile ad to see what’s there (in lefthand rail) — and found out that he’s still swinging re: his race with GOPrimary winner Jai Nelson. The ad begins: “Keep character and experience in and Jai Nelson out.” It then goes on to challenge 4 claims made by Nelson. And ends with something that caught my eye: “If Jai Nelson takes office in Jan. … Phil Hart and Larry Spencer will be moving into office with her.” Go ahead and click on the ads. They take you to the candidate’s Web side or more information about the candidate.

Question: Is this an effective ploy — to say that the election of Jai Nelson will lead to her buddies Phil Hart and Larry Spencer controlling one of the 3 Kootenai County commish seats? Or will voters dismiss it as campaign rhetoric?

HBO Poll: Dan English Vs. Cliff Hayes

  • Wednesday Poll: A supermajority (73 of 106, 68.87%) voted that the League of Women Voters blew it by not inviting write-ins Rick Currie (vs. Jai Nelson) and Howard Griffiths (vs. Phil Hart) to debate last night at the league’s candidates’ forum. 29 of 106 (27.36%) said the league was right in excluding the write-ins. 4 were undecided.
  • Today’s Poll: Who will get your vote in the Kootenai County clerk’s race — Republican Cliff Hayes of Democrat Dan English?

Jai Nelson Tackles Campaign Rumors

Item: Politics turn personal: Commission candidate Jai Nelson responds to accusations/Alecia Warren, Coeur d’Alene Press.

More Info: Another accusation surfaced in a letter to the editor by Rick Currie on Oct. 3. Currie stated that Nelson had “told outright lies” about their political opponent, Fillios. Fillios said on Thursday that during the primary campaign, several individuals approached him about rumors they heard from Larry Spencer, a Spirit Lake developer understood to be part of Nelson’s campaign.

Question: Is Nelson being helped or hurt by the rumors swirling around her campaign?

Currie: Jai Nelson Lied, Didn’t Show

In the Coeur d’Alene Press Sunday, Commissioner Rick Currie wrote a letter to the editor, which read in part: “(Jai Nelson, left) completely misrepresented her business qualifications, told outright lies about the other candidate’s intentions, her campaign people slandered the other candidate with sexual innuendos, and she couldn’t be bothered to show up at several candidate forums and at one was clearly heard to say that she had no intention of working that hard if she were the Commissioner. If this is the person that you want to trust with the well-being of Kootenai County then Mr. Moser that is your right, but you don’t need to tell lies about me in the process.” More here.

Reaction?

HBO Poll: Currie Has Chance To Win

  • Thursday Poll: A fair majority of respondents believe that Commissioner Rick Currie has a slim to good chance of succeeding as a write-in candidate in his re-election bid against Republican primary winner Jai Nelson. 68 of 111 (61%) said Currie has a chance of winning the uphill battle (38 rated chance as “slim,” 20 said “fair,” and 10 voted “good”). 40 of 111 (36%) said Currie had no chance of winning as a write-in candidate.
  • Dirtiest Local Race: The race between write-in Currie and Republican banner carrier Jai Nelson also was the people’s choice to be the nastiest one locally this fall. 46 of 151 respondents (30.46%) expect the commissioners race to be dirtiest. Tied for second (w/31 of 151 votes, 20.53%) were the NIC trustee race b/n Christie Wood & Robert Ketchum and the county clerk’s race b/n Dan English & Cliff Hayes). A close 4th was the race b/n Phil Hart & write-in Howard Griffiths with 30 votes (19.9%). Of the five races listed, the NIC trustee one b/n Ron Nilson & Ken Howard is expected to have the least fireworks (13 of 151, 8.6%)
  • Weekend Question: When the new WalMart opens in Hayden next week, which Kootenai County WalMart will get most of your business?

Kage: Lot Of People Want Currie Out

RE: Huckleberries interviews Rick Currie/DFO, Huckleberries Online

Kage Mann: Rick, it’s sour grapes. I know you’re worried about your $64,000 income and you don’t want to be like Gus Johnson; working for $9/ hr. as a bookkeeper in the sheriffs office. But, alot of people want you out. Quit trying to ruin other candidates chances to make a positive difference in the county.

Question: What odds would you give for Rick Currie succeeding as a write-in candidate?

Huckleberries Interviews Rick Currie

Kootenai County Commissioner Rick Currie dropped by Hucks Central a few minutes ago to announce his candidacy as a write-in candidate for the seat he now holds against Republican Jai Nelson, who beat Chris Fillios and him in a three-way race in the spring primaries. You can read Rick’s official announcement here and a brief interview with Hucks Online below:

  • DFO: It’s extremely difficult to win a write-in election. You must realize that. How do you intend to knock off a Republican who’s on the ballot?
  • Rick Currie: I am a Republican, too. I’m running as a Republican. There was an extremely low voter turnout in the primary. It was embarrassing. No candidate got near 40 percent of the vote. And you have a tremendous number of people out there who are not politically affiliated. We’re going to get a lot more people voting. Citizens of Kootenai County deserve a choice.
  • Rest of interview in drop-down box below

Question: What would Rick Currie have to do to beat Jai Nelson as a write-in candidate?

Green, Nelson Sweep Out Incumbents

One challenger in a Kootenai County commission race was holding a solid lead Tuesday over a first-term incumbent, but the other contested Republican primary was too close to call. The races are winner-take-all because no Democrats entered the races. Dan Green, chairman of the county’s planning and zoning commission and a retired lumber industry executive, had 56 percent of the vote to Commissioner Rich Piazza’s 30 percent with 43 of 71 precincts reporting. The third candidate, businessman Kevin Ratigan, had 14 percent. Piazza was running in his first race for re-election after winning a four-year term in 2006. The winner will serve a two-year term/Alison Boggs, SR. More here.

Question: Green (final vote here) and Nelson (final vote here) both won their three-way races Tuesday, ousting the two Republican incumbents. Why did the voters turn on the incumbents?

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About this blog

D.F. Oliveria is a columnist and blogger for The Spokesman-Review. Print Huckleberries is a past winner of the Herb Caen Memorial Column contest by the National Association of Newspaper Columnists. The Readership Institute of Northwestern University cited this blog as a good example of online community journalism.

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