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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883

Eye On Boise

Bedke: ‘As hard a decision as I’ve faced as speaker’

House Speaker Scott Bedke, R-Oakley, said after the House adjourned today, “I have no comment in regard to the action,” in which he stripped Rep. Heather Scott, R-Blanchard, of all her House committee assignments. “This is an internal matter and I consider it closed.”

Bedke said it’s the first time he’s ever made such a decision as speaker. “Ultimately, the buck stops here,” he said. “I don’t do these things lightly or in a knee-jerk way. This is as hard a decision … as I’ve faced as a speaker. No one likes things like this.”

He added, “This is not unprecedented. It’s unfortunate, but not unprecedented.” He said he acted according to the rules of the House.

The removal of all committee assignments doesn’t prevent Scott from voting as a representative in the full House, but it removes her from the main work of the Legislature, the committee work in which bills are considered, hearings are held, and the potential new laws are voted up or down, prior to reaching the full House or Senate.

Asked if Scott still can attend House GOP caucus meetings, Bedke said, “That’s on her. I don’t know.” She often, in the past, has skipped those sessions, remaining instead at her desk in the House chamber.

Scott had no comment when asked by reporters, but said she'll issue a statement later today.

Betsy Z. Russell
Betsy Z. Russell joined The Spokesman-Review in 1991. She currently is a reporter in the Boise Bureau covering Idaho state government and politics, and other news from Idaho's state capital.

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