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Huckleberries Online

Reuter: Idaho liberal? Ahaha

In the Inlander, former Sandpoint councilman John T. Reuter chuckles when he hears an Idaho politician described as a liberal, especially the ones he left behind in Boise when he moved to Seattle:

Earlier this summer I moved from Boise to Seattle, following my wife who started law school at the University of Washington. I've found the politics here in the unofficial capital of the Pacific Northwest a bit unfamiliar, to say the least.

Our local council district race features a progressive Democratic African-American woman whose top policy initiative is decreasing violence through employing former gang members to help keep the peace. The proposal is interesting and has merit, having seen success in other cities, but the most fascinating thing is she's the big business-backed conservative in the race.

Her opponent is Kshama Sawant, an avowed socialist known for slogans like "Tax the Rich" and for successfully advocating for a $15 minimum wage, which is also supported by her opponent and literally every other serious candidate for local office. Sawant is also the incumbent and favored to win.

The reason I'm telling you this is so you understand why I'm skeptical of claims Boise has been taken over by left-wing liberals. At their most extreme, Mayor Dave Bieter and the Boise City Council are a mild-mannered, sincere bunch with a center-left agenda to gently nudge the city they love into a better future. More here. Illustration of John T. Reuter by Jeremy Laningham/Inlander)

Question: I'm continually amused re: how we allowed ideological interlopers from all over the country redefine what it means to be a North Idaho conservative. Their definition puts anyone who isn't four-square behind the Tea Party platform in the liberal camp. I suspect many of those defining what it means to be a conservative are RINOs on a different side of the political spectrum. I'm not sure there really is such a thing as a liberal in North Idaho. Democrats, yes. But a real liberal. Nah. Thoughts?

D.F. Oliveria
D.F. (Dave) Oliveria joined The Spokesman-Review in 1984. He currently is a columnist and compiles the Huckleberries Online blog and writes about North Idaho in his Huckleberries column.

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