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Weighing in

A weekly look at reader comments and reactions to the news

Readers reacted sharply to the passage of legislation in the Idaho House of Representatives that would exempt the state’s residents from having to comply with any health reform mandates that might be imposed by the U.S. Congress. Some cheered the move, others called it profoundly ill-informed. What follows is a sampling of the reader debate. Full coverage can be found at

natoslug: I love the scenery, but I’ve come to dread the politics up here. Thank you, Idaho House, for once again reaffirming my decision to move to Northern California this summer. Redwood trees and hippies beats narrow minds and knapweed any day.

Yikes: Indeed. I’m so sick of these creepballs trying to put the fear of God into Idahoans and pretending to give a damn about their “individual rights.” Such a load of crap.

Ol_Blue: California’s Anthem Blue Cross is raising rates 39 percent in March, 23 and 22.8 percent increases in Maine and Oregon … and Republicans … scream and cry “We’re Scared” over the prospect of a public option and health care reform to keep these corporations in check. Now the Supreme Court has opened the floodgates for these same companies to pour unlimited monies into the political process to guarantee their record profits continue, while the Republicans cheer and the citizens who are hurt most continue to vote these crooks in.

PhiltheBibliophil: As a senior (62) with quite a few health problems and not able to receive Medicaid, Medicare and being “underemployed” with no employer health benefits, I rely on the VA system for care! If you can wait long enough and not die first they do a fantastic job, especially here in Spokane! If I had to buy into a federally mandated program or face jail there is no way I could afford such a premium. I’d be homeless or would starve and then go to jail, where I’ve never been in my life! I’ve voted Democratic all my life, but I have to agree with the Republithugs in Idaho on this one!

Sugar Shane: Odd, every time someone brings up legalizing marijuana, the first thing they say OH NO, that’s against federal law! But if it’s mandated health care reform, that lowers costs and ensures access by everyone, it becomes “this is our state, and we won’t let the government tell us what to do!”

Ender: I think we need to take a step back and look at the larger implications of what that type of mandate could lead to. The mandate would be in place to protect the public or common good, right? Well, if that’s allowed, what else could the government force us to do for the common good?