January 26, 1995 in Idaho

Idahoans Elected Anne Fox To Fix Education System

By The Spokesman-Review
 

Sorry, I don’t buy the squawking that the Coeur d’Alene School Board is kowtowing to conservative activists. Chairman Ken Burchell and his philosophically balanced board aren’t stooges for anyone. The board is being criticized for scrapping questionable experimental programs and heeding parents’ call for a return to the basics. Maybe the trustees interpreted the election of state Superintendent of Schools Anne Fox to mean, as I did, that most Idahoans want the education system fixed. We’re losing too many quality students to private and home schools because parents - and not just the conservative ones - don’t trust the system.

Was that the Ol’ Gipper or Slick Willie speaking?

See what Kootenai County Sheriff Pierce Clegg started? Last fall, he changed his donkey ears for an elephant trunk. And now everyone’s doing it. In recent days, Spokane County Commissioner Steve Hasson and former Boundary County Commissioner Ron Smith have followed suit (though the Republicans tried to give Hasson back). Now, President Clinton has turned coat. Oh, it’s not official. If you heard Clinton’s speech Tuesday, however, you know it’s only a matter of time.

They’d rather fight than switch

The few Idaho Democrats who haven’t switched over are right to wonder about all the hoopla being made over tax cuts and tighter government. Sure, ex-Democratic Gov. Cecil Andrus vetoed a major property tax bill rammed through the Legislature in the closing days of the 1994 session - as Republicans knew he would. But the R’s have controlled the Idaho Legislature for years. They were responsible for the 1991 Truth In Taxation legislation that allowed local governments to hike taxes as much as 700 percent. Truth In Taxation launched the 1992 and 1994 One Percent Initiative drives. Here’s hoping Gov. Phil Batt can keep the “tight-fisted” GOP legislators under control as his predecessor did.

ACLU has too much time on its hands

Don’t look now, but the American Civil Liberties Union is at it again. Now, the ACLU has joined three Pocatellans in suing for the removal of the Ten Commandments on the Bannock County Courthouse lawn. Maybe, as lawyers, the ACLU’ers are offended by the commandments that forbid lying and stealing.

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