All politics and election news

Idaho state treasurer’s transactions under scrutiny

BOISE – Deborah Silver, the Twin Falls accountant who’s challenging four-term Idaho Treasurer Ron Crane, is calling on Crane to release a full review of questioned investment transactions. “What else does he have to hide?” Silver asked. “Idaho taxpayers deserve the truth from their state treasurer.” Read more

Silver calls on Crane to turn over investment review documents to state auditors

Deborah Silver, the Twin Falls accountant who’s challenging four-term state Treasurer Ron Crane, is calling on Crane to release…

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Silver calls on Crane to release Idaho investment review info

Deborah Silver, the Twin Falls accountant who’s challenging four-term Idaho state Treasurer Ron Crane, is calling on Crane to release a full review of questioned investment transactions to state auditors. “What else does he have to hide?” Silver asked. “Idaho taxpayers deserve the truth from their state treasurer.” Crane maintains he’s released all the information he can, but Idaho’s state auditor’s office, in an audit report released at the end of June, said it still hadn’t received documentation showing that Crane’s office has reviewed all potentially problematic transactions, after news of one surfaced in which a state investment pool lost millions when Crane’s office reallocated assets between it and a local government investment pool. Read more

Idaho GOP charges against Balukoff, Democratic Party fizzle

BOISE – Charges flew – then fizzled – over the weekend as the Idaho Republican Party claimed that the Idaho Democratic Party and Democratic candidate for governor A.J. Balukoff were doing something “shady” that involved passing money back and forth that might violate campaign finance laws. The Democrats responded that Balukoff had contracted out his campaign payroll services to the state party, and it was all reported, legal and on the up-and-up. Read more

Charges fly, then fizzle in governor’s race

Here’s a link to my full story at spokesman.com on how charges flew – then fizzled – over the weekend…

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Idaho GOP backs off from complaint over Balukoff and Dems’ campaign finances

The Idaho Republican Party now says it won’t pursue any campaign finance complaint against A.J. Balukoff, Democratic candidate…

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Idaho Secretary of State says no violation in Balukoff payroll contract

Idaho Chief Deputy Secretary of State Tim Hurst says there’s no campaign finance violation in the way Democratic gubernatorial…

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Of parties, payroll, and politics…

The Idaho Republican Party charged in a press release sent out late Friday night that Democratic candidate for governor A…

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‘Otter fatigue’ a factor as two-term GOP governor seeks a third term

An Idaho Statesman story over the weekend explored how “Otter fatigue” – a phrase I’ve been hearing increasingly this year…

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Crane faces first debate of 16 years in office

Idaho Treasurer Ron Crane will participate in his first series of political debates since he was elected 16 years ago…

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Zombie politics shaping state Senate race

There’s more than civic pride riding on Friday night’s premiere of “Z Nation,” the zombie-apocalypse TV show filmed and produced in Spokane. It’s also become the symbolic centerpiece of Democratic state Senate challenger Rich Cowan’s pitch as the candidate with the best economic development résumé. Cowan’s studio, North By Northwest, is producing the 13-episode SyFy network series, which has brought the equivalent of about 200 full-time and mostly union-scale jobs to Spokane, as well as hundreds of other part-time opportunities. Read more

Senate challenger Rich Cowan making most of ‘Z Nation’ debut

There’s more than civic pride riding on Friday night’s premiere of “Z Nation,” the zombie-apocalypse TV show filmed and produced in Spokane. It’s also become the symbolic centerpiece of Democratic state Senate challenger Rich Cowan’s pitch as the candidate with the best economic development résumé. Cowan’s studio, North By Northwest, is producing the 13-episode SyFy network series, which has brought the equivalent of about 200 full-time and mostly union-scale jobs to Spokane, as well as hundreds of other part-time opportunities. Read more

Dana Milbank: Political outsider fad misguided

Among many talents exhibited by Chuck Todd in the days since he replaced David Gregory as host of “Meet the Press” is his ability to turn a proper noun into a verb. “I’m not trying to Horatio Alger,” Todd told my Washington Post colleague Ben Terris. “But it’s an advantage that I grew up middle class in South Florida” – where, he said, his father wasn’t always fully employed and the whole family at times shared a mattress. “I feel like I understand that resentment that can build when the New York perspective or the Washington perspective doesn’t seem to understand what’s going on in America. Tim Russert had that advantage because he grew up a middle-class kid. I do think that helps.” Read more

Series of Idaho candidate debates scheduled

BOISE – A full slate of political debates stretches before Idaho voters who are mulling decisions on every statewide office in November. The “Idaho Debates,” a tradition of more than three decades, will feature seven debates broadcast live statewide on Idaho Public Television, co-sponsored by the Idaho Press Club and the League of Women Voters of Idaho. Read more

Full slate of debates in Idaho races to ‘fill in the picture’ for voters

A full slate of political debates stretches before Idaho voters, who are mulling decisions on every statewide office in November…

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Both Ybarra, Jones question Luna’s big bonuses to top staffers

Both candidates for state superintendent of schools are questioning outgoing Supt. Tom Luna’s decision to award $151,000 in…

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‘Idaho Debates’ announce fall line-up

The Idaho Debates, a tradition of more than three decades in Idaho, has announced its fall line-up of political debates…

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Some not-too-shocking endorsements

The Spokane County Republican Party has gone waaaaay out on a limb and endorsed three incumbent Republicans running for re-election…

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Priest Lake cabin site sales bring in nearly $27 million

At the Aug. 28 auction of state-owned Priest Lake cabin sites at the Coeur d’Alene Resort, many in the crowd wondered if Idaho really was getting a better deal for the state’s schoolchildren – the beneficiaries of the Priest Lake state endowment lands – by divesting itself of the cabin sites. Here’s a look at the numbers: The 59 cabin-site renters are currently charged rent at 4 percent of appraised value for the ground under their cabins, which came to a total this year of $1,070,857. Read more

Competing state gun initiatives vie for police support

Law enforcement agencies may not be getting much love in most of the country after images of heavily armed cops filled news coverage of protests in Ferguson, Missouri. But here in Washington, the dueling gun initiatives are competing for the claim of “cops love my initiative better.” Initiative 591 would keep background checks the way they are now – sales from licensed gun dealers covered, private sales not – until federal law says different. Its supporters counted first coup in the race for cop commendations with the endorsement of the Washington Council of Police and Sheriffs. WACOPS, as the group with considerable clout is known around the Capitol, voted to go with I-591 and oppose Initiative 594 back in June after presentations on both measures. Read more