Latest from The Spokesman-Review
How willing are you to ride to the rescue for the woman of your dreams? Jennifer Drake Facebooks how hubby, Benjamin, didn't hesitate to react when she dropped her phone accidentally into the lake:
"I have yet to give credit to the amazing Benjamin Drake for rescuing my phone from the bottom of Lake Coeur d'Alene this weekend. While climbing onto the boat late Saturday night, the phone fell from a pocket in the diaper bag into 15 ft of pitch black water. Ben immediately stripped down (onlookers aplenty), dove in, and saved the day. And yes, after 24 hours in rice, I'm typing this from my fully functioning phone. I knew he'd come in handy someday!"
Question: How have you shown your love for someone this summer?
Jennifer Drake and Sara Meyer, the organizers of the successful anti-recall movement, haven't gone away. They just launched Citizens for a Positive Coeur d'Alene, a nonpartisan group dedicated to keep Coeur d'Alene "moving in a positive direction." Jennifer explains to Huckleberries: "We come from all walks of life, all backgrounds, many professions, and various political parties. However, we all have one thing in common: we love Coeur d’Alene. It is our goal to create a forum wherein many individuals can come together and respectfully discuss issues that matter to our community." And: "It will start with Facebook, but we will have a website, email, and definitely meet ups for people to chat face to face. We will discuss ways to be positively involved in the community, and I'm sure a big part of the discussion will involve upcoming elections. However, we are committed to staying nonpartisan." You can find the Facebook site of Citizens for a Positive Coeur d'Alene here.
Question: I'm jazzed about this development. How about you?
Jennifer Drake, center, and Sara Meyer, a supporter of Decline to Sign, and Frank Orzell, a supporter of Recall CDA, discuss events leading up to an announcement Monday, June 18, 2012, at city hall in Coeur d'Alene, Idaho, that there will be no recall on upcoming ballots. Kootenai County election officials ruled Monday that recall organizers failed to collect enough signatures to trigger a recall election. (Gabe Green Coeur d'Alene Press photo)
Remember how this all started?
- Way We Were: HBO interviews Mayor Sandi Bloem April 4, on day of Recall announcement
- Way We Were: Anti-Recall foes to start recall try/Huckleberries Online, April 4
- Way We Were: My 2 Cents: Just say no to recall/DFO, Huckleberries Online, April 4
- Way We Were: 20 who signed petition to launch recall/HucksOnline, April 4
- Way We Were: HBO interviews Stop Recall leaders Meyer, Drake (April 6)
DFO: I watched and listened to this encounter. Sara had just told Frank Orzell that she was disappointed that he'd gone submitted petitions circulated by Rod Bitterman, who was later investigated for providing incorrect information in gathering signatures. Sara concluded that it was time for both groups to move on. I tip my cap to Orzell that he was willing to face the music re: the failure of the recall when no other Recaller did.
Jennifer Drake reports to HucksOnline that 7 anti-Recallers have gone through about 200 petitions, checking for signatures that should be disqualified — almost halfway there. She tells HBO: "Things are all over the board. Lots of people not registered as voters, lots of wrong addresses. More and more who signed the petitions before they were registered. But each page is so different that we really won't know until much closer to the end. It's a very tedious process. Another thing is that it's taking us a lot longer than we thought, and we don't even have to check as much as the clerk's staff does. It will be interesting to see if they get it all done in the shortened time period. I think there's a reason they are supposed to have 15 days." Also, Jennifer tells HucksOnline that there seems to be invalid signatures on every petition, sometimes as few as one, other times as many as 10. (Coeur d'Alene Press file photo)
On their Stop the Recall online page, organizers Sara Meyer & Jennifer Drake have created a petition in support of the recall targets. They write: "We have created an online petition for people to sign in support of Mayor Bloem and Council Members Goodlander, Kennedy, and McEvers. Unlike the recall petition, ours is purely symbolic, but we are still hoping to blow the recall signatures out of the water! All you have to do is go to our webpage and click on "Sign Petition", or go to the petition webpage and sign there. Either way, it is simple and will only take 30 seconds. Please sign and tell your friends and family to do so as well. Let's get thousands of names on there opposing the recall!" You can sign the petition here.
Question: Do you plan to sign up?
Sara Meyer & Jennifer Drake of the Stop the Recall movement began mailing out a letter to every registered voter in Coeur d'Alene today, electronically first and then a hard copy next week — 21,600 residents, 14,500 homes. The letter challenges four reasons given by the Souza-Sims-Orzell recall group for attempting its overthrow of city government. "Our mayor and council members being targeted for recall have done nothing wrong. They have done nothing illegal or immoral. A recall is an important part of our system of government, but it is a tool to be used in extreme circumstances, warranted by things such as criminal malfeasance or illegal activities. To attempt to recall four oustanding leaders because of an ideological disagreement is a misuse of the system. You can read the letter yourself here. (Jerome A. Pollos' Coeur d'Alene Press photo: Jennifer Drake of the Stop the Recall movement eyeballs recall proponent at City Hall April 4)
Stop the Recall will be staging a rally at 107 N. 4th St. in downtown Coeur d'Alene at 5 p.m. Wednesday.
Looks like the "Decline to Sign" advocates are locking up the Toyota vote. Heidi Pracht Rogers writes on her Facebook wall: "
On the Stop the Recall Facebook page, Jennifer Drake posts: "
- I’ll be wearing my shirt proudly every chance I get! In fact, I think I’m going to run in the Spring Dash on April 22nd and wear my DECLINE TO SIGN shirt! Who’s with me?"
On OpenCdA today, Mary Souza is questioning the 500 individuals on Facebook now backing the Stop the Recall movement, which she calls "Government-Knows-Best" group. Mary suggests in a comment that the 500 individuals who have signed on in support may simply be combined groups of friends dumped onto the new page by the Stop the Recall organizers. "The problem is that many folks don’t check their Facebook info very often. So they could be in the Government-Knows-Best group for days or weeks before they realized they were automatically part of a group they didn’t want to be associated with." Then, she goes further and says that's exactly what the Stop the Recall group is doing. Quoth: "They don’t want voters of CdA to have a voice and they dump people into their Facebook group without approval. Tacky."
Question: Are you part of the Friends group for the Stop The Recall Facebook page?
Jennifer Drake, right, and Michael Sheneman hold signs with opposite opinions during a Recall CdA rally on Wednesday at City Hall in Coeur d'Alene. Residents turned out for the rally to express their discontent with the city leaderships decision to move forward with a park plan that will cost millions of dollars without seeking public input with a vote. (AP Photo/Coeur d'Alene Press, Jerome A. Pollos)
DFO: Hat Tip to Jerome Pollos of the Coeur d'Alene Press for capturing the two sides of the Coeur d'Alene recall fight — and I don't mean just the opposing sides. Jerome also sized up the demographics well.
HucksOnline is now interviewing the organizers of the Stop the Recall movement, Sara Meyer (left) and Jennifer Drake. (BTW, check out Jennifer supporting the council & mayor alongside pro-recall codger in Thursday's Coeur d'Alene Press here)
- Question: Were you surprised by the response you got at the Fort Ground Grill last night?
- Sara Meyer: We were amazed considering that the planning took place in 24 hours.
- Jennifer Drake: There were about 40 people there. And among that group were outstanding community leaders including the four being targetted for recall. Everyone was fired up in a positive way. (Sara recaps last evening's meeting on the Stop the Recall wall here)
- Question: It's interesting that this anti-recall movement is led by two young mothers with 18MO babies.
- Sara: We're passionate about our city. We're both Idaho natives and we came back here after going to school to raise families. It's not about us any more, it's for our families.
- Jennifer: I'm currently raising the fifth generation of my family in this town. I refuse to stand by while a select group of uncompromising zealots try to ruin my community before my daughter sees how great it can become.
- Question: What was the most encouraging thing that happened last night?
- Jennifer: For me, it was the fact that we had the room almost entirely filled before 6 a.m. People were so eager to show up and support us that they took time out on short notice to show support. When the mayor & 3 City Council members walked in there was cheering and back-patting.
- Sara: I was overwhelmed by the passion people seem to have found. They have awakened a sleeping giant. People were okay to sit back because things were going along well. But now they realize the future of our community is truly in trouble. It's time to fight fire with fire. It's time to fight lies with facts.
- Question: You two come from different political backgrounds (Sara's father was a Democratic Bonner County commissioner for 6 years, Dale Van Stone, and Jennifer's father is former Republican senator & Lt. Gov. Jack Riggs.) How does this nonpartisanship work?
- Jennifer: We have found common ground through rational discussion. In this particular case understanding that the city council should be nonpartisan and should not feel undo influence from either side of the political spectrum.
- Question: How do people get involved with the Stop the Recall movement?
- Sara: They can join our Facebook group, like our Facebook page, or email us at SaveCdA2012@gmail.com.
- Jennifer: We are also encouraging people to write letters to the editor supporting the mayor and city council and opposing the recall — and simply telling everyone they know not to sign the petition. We have a PO Box they can send money to: Stop the Recall, PO Box 2781, Coeur d'Alene 83816.
You can follow the news from Stop the Recall at this Facebook page here.