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Huckleberries: Has the Kootenai County Republican Party been hijacked by outsiders?

Christa Hazel has had it up to here with the ideological nuttiness of the Kootenai County Republican Central Committee – the “KCRCC,” so to speak. Only Christa says the “R” in this case stands for “Redoubt.”

The “American Redoubt” movement consists largely of religious survivalists who are answering the Pied Piper call of blogger James Wesley Rawles to head to the sparsely populated Inland Northwest. The goal of the Redoubters is to hunker down in a defensible area waiting for all hell to break loose elsewhere.

Christa, a Coeur d’Alene school trustee and GOP precinct committeewoman, is warning that some of the Redoubters have not only hunkered down but have embedded themselves in the Kootenai County Republican Party. And they have enormous clout with Chairman Brent Regan and the Central Committee. That political muscle was on display at the committee’s monthly meeting last week, she said, when the party launched a last-minute attempt to stop a long-planned Citylink bus transit center from being built at Coeur d’Alene’s Riverstone. The committee passed a resolution claiming the center will be an “attractive nuisance” for crime and illegal activities.

“It was a very negative meeting and in no way represented my views nor even Republican Party views.” Christa commented in a Facebook post. “This flies in the face of our religious community helping out those less fortunate. It violates our platform that supports older Americans in accessing any and all services provided by local, state, and federal levels.”

Seems like the Kootenai County Republican Central Committee has become an unattractive nuisance.

Citylink vital

Huckleberries asked stay-at-home mother Faith Tonna of Hayden to tell us why Citylink is vital to her: “I currently use it almost four to five days a week to get to Coeur d’Alene from Hayden and back. I medically am unable to have a license to drive, and the majority of my doctors’ appointments are in Coeur d’Alene. There are times my 6-year-old daughter is with me. I have personally seen a huge decrease in the number of transients and homeless (riding Citylink). For the most part, I see elderly or people needing to use low-cost transportation utilize the bus. In order for Citylink to grow, a transit station is necessary at this point.” Kootenai County commissioners are meeting today (6-8 p.m. in the county administration building) to discuss the Citylink transit project.


Poet’s Corner: “We all drive a Hummer/and we live on the Lake/and we drop by the Spa/when we feel like a break,” a poem titled, “The Way We Live in Idaho” (from “The Bard of Sherman Avenue: Poems of Tom Wobker” … Poll: 79 percent of Huckleberries Online ( readers support construction of the Riverside Citylink transit center … Coeur d’Alene native Kris Helstrom is amused to see people still wearing layers of clothes. “Yes,” she says, “the weather is all over the place, but you don’t have to give me funny looks when I walk into the gas station wearing a tank top, yoga capris and sunglasses.”

Parting shot

Deputy City Administrator Sam Taylor of Coeur d’Alene tells Huckleberries that he’s still in shock, after learning that he’ll be the father of a girl for the first time (Huckleberries, May 1). Sam and his three sons didn’t learn that a girl was on the way until a barbecue Sunday. The reveal occurred when the silly string in the cans distributed to Sam, the boys and other family members popped out pink. Sez Sam: “I feel like a new father all over again. And I’m so excited that our boys will have a sister to protect, and (she) will get to show them that she can take care of herself. Finally, (Wife) Kathryn isn’t so outnumbered!”

Staff columnist D.F. Oliveria can be reached at