Editorials

February 22, 2007

COMMON MAN, UNCOMMON LEADER

February is a great month to talk about Abraham Lincoln's roots as a common man, a man of the people. Lincoln lived a timeless example that provides no less leadership for America today than when he was at the country's helm 150 years ago.Lincoln had tragedy and challenges early in life. When he was nine, his mother died. When his father remarried, the new blended family of eight lived in a log cabin. As a youth, Lincoln became very close to his stepmother, a tender and strong relationsh… Continue Reading


February 14, 2007

THE BUDGET BALLOON

If you've ever watched the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade, you've seen the multi-story balloons floating through New York City. The federal budget is like one of these massive balloons, and Congress' responsibility is similar to that of balloon handlers. Right now, that balloon is threatening to break free of its tethers. Controlling it requires many adjustments (weather and skyscrapers make this all the more challenging). My colleagues and I on the Budget Committee will be revie… Continue Reading


February 07, 2007

MATTERS OF WAR DESERVE FULL DEBATE

Like my fellow Idahoans, I'm troubled by the violence and bloodshed occurring in Iraq. The United States should never send forces into combat unless it's to protect our national security and unless we provide our service personnel resources and support necessary to succeed. Despite principled disagreement occurring in this country, I'm concerned about the message we send our troops on the ground and others by failing to adequately consider different proposals for Congressional action… Continue Reading


January 31, 2007

TIME FOR IDAHO TO TAKE THE LEAD

Idaho and other Mountain West states are home to amazing natural resources. We work hard protecting and conserving these resources, including abundant native wildlife, in correct balance with our livelihood and recreational pursuits. Weâ??re fortunate to have science and technology resources to accomplish the best for wildlife and the people and communities that interact with these animals. Last week, the Fish and Wildlife Service started a 60-day comment period on a proposal to de-list the Gray… Continue Reading


January 24, 2007

BEHIND THE FACES IN THE CROWD

The next time you notice a group of teenage girls at the mall or at a high school event, think about this alarming fact: one out of every three or four who is involved in a dating relationship fears for her personal safety in that relationship. When you see groups of teensâ??boys or girlsâ??it might surprise you to learn that recent national statistics cite that fifty percent of teens in a serious relationship have compromised their beliefs to please their dating partner. And, back to the girlsâ… Continue Reading


January 17, 2007

A KNACK FOR NUMBERS

According to the Miller Center for Public Affairs at the University of Virginia, George Washington â??displayed a gift for mathematicsâ?? from early in his life. The essay continues, â??This knack for numbers combined with his quiet confidence and ambition caught the attention of Lord Fairfax, head of one of the most powerful families in Virginia.â?? Young Washington worked as a surveyor for Lord Fairfax; these forays into the wilderness undoubtedly laying groundwork for his skill in later years… Continue Reading


January 10, 2007

A TIME TO GROW

Winter might be an odd time to talk about job growth. The harsh reality for many rural Idahoans in natural resource-based economies (especially this year where parts of Idaho have had bouts of extreme weather) is that winter is a time when some people may have to rely on unemployment benefits to get through a few lean months. Thankfully, there is usually abundant work in the spring, summer and fall months and, from what the numbers are showing, even more than there has been in years past. Accord… Continue Reading


December 20, 2006

A MILITARY CHRISTMAS

Not too long ago, a friend of mine told me a story about when his father served aboard ship at Christmastime during World War II. The ship was in the South Pacific and the Captain, who enjoyed having music played over the shipâ??s public address system, gave an out-of-character order that the new song written by Irving Berlin and sung by Bing Crosby, "White Christmas," wasn't to be played anymore. He had become worried when he noticed that it was making some of his toughest, most s… Continue Reading


December 13, 2006

CRAPO HIGHLIGHTS KEY PROVISIONS OF BROAD END-OF-THE-YEAR LEGISLATION

Effective legislation can sometimes travel a difficult road to passage. Tax policy extensions, health initiatives and trade negotiations languished throughout the year, held up by partisan debate and unpalatable amendments. In the final days of the 109th Congress, the House and Senate passed a bill encompassing many of these outstanding issues. The final bill (H.R. 6111), soon to be signed into law, extends important tax relief measures, ensures access to vital medical services, expands trade op… Continue Reading


December 08, 2006

DECIPHERING THE LANGUAGE OF LEGISLATION(Full Length Article)

A quick look through any article about Congress may wind up confusing many people because of the jargon used. For example, here are a couple of quotes describing legislative activity from a recent congressional news magazine: â??â?¦a clean stop-gap measure.â?? â??â?¦Senators who have blocked a conference committee on that measureâ?¦to prevent it from becoming an earmark-laden omnibus spending package.â?? â??â?¦leaders have eliminated some of the most promising vehicles for carrying smaller bills… Continue Reading


December 06, 2006

THE LANGUAGE OF LEGISLATION

A quick look through any article about Congress may wind up confusing many people because of the jargon used. For example, here are a couple of quotes describing legislative activity from a recent congressional news magazine: â??â?¦a clean stop-gap measure.â?? â??â?¦to prevent it from becoming an earmark-laden omnibus spending package.â??Legislative vernacular includes words and phrases like recess, earmark, continuing resolution, cloture and others. Like many organizations, government has devel… Continue Reading


November 29, 2006

HEARTS AND HANDS FOR SERVICE

"Maybe Christmas," he thought, "doesn't come from a store. Maybe Christmas...perhaps...means a little bit more!"-The GrinchYou may have heard about the Boise woman who recently gained national attention for her organization, Chefs to the Rescue, that distributes food to the hungry in the Treasure Valley. Formerly homeless and a mother of five, Sue Cobley took a difficult personal situation and turned it into a blessing for others in the same plight. Hunger in Idaho is not… Continue Reading


November 21, 2006

HERE'S TO GOOD HEALTH

A New Yearâ??s resolution to exercise and eat more fruits and vegetables or the dreaded â??diet resolutionâ?? arenâ??t exactly foremost in our thoughts as we prepare butter and gravy-laden meals and treat ourselves to â??just one more pieceâ?? of chocolate at work. For many, healthy eating from Halloween to New Yearâ??s Eve can be difficult. However, healthy eating and staying active are especially important during the holidays. Men, in particular, need a little extra urging when it comes to pra… Continue Reading


November 15, 2006

AN IDAHO THANKSGIVING

When we go to the grocery store to shop for Thanksgiving, there are often products from all over the country and the world to pick from. However, Idahoans grow or raise a multitude of products that make a perfect and authentic Thanksgiving dinner. An Idaho Thanksgiving table is a great backdrop to celebrate our American tradition of giving thanks for our incredible bounty, be it food, family, community or our freedom. The first Thanksgiving meal didnâ??t include a turkey, but it did include veni… Continue Reading


November 14, 2006

AFTER THE STORM

Fall is a transitional season, the scene of strong winds and driving rain storms that scatter branches and leaves in the melee. Yet, after a stormy night, the weather can be remarkably clear; the wind--calm. This election season was not unlike a fall storm with political winds blowing fast and furiously. Now, with the House of Representatives under Democratic leadership (as of this writing, the Senate was still undecided) Congress can look ahead take a collective deep breath from the wild weathe… Continue Reading


November 01, 2006

IDAHO VETERAN REFLECTS ON HIS SERVICE

This Veterans Day, Iâ??m honored to share the words of recent veteran, Idaho Marine Reservist Staff Sergeant Luke Miller. Miller earned the Non-Commissioned Officer Association Military Vanguard Award for saving fellow Marinesâ?? lives. â??Growing up, I never thought Iâ??d find myself looking at the world through the eyes of a â??veteran.â?? I never imagined that I would willingly enlist in the military and serve in a combat zone. Yet I joined out of high school, and there are very few things in… Continue Reading


October 25, 2006

KEYS TO SCHOOL SAFETY

"It was a little group but they were part of the school. They dressed differently and they acted differently. They always dressed in black, usually in trench coats. I never saw them threaten anybody or bully anybody, but we avoided them because they were different. ... I'm angry someone would do this to us. There are lives ruined, families ruined, and our whole school year is ruined.'' -- Columbine High School StudentThese words reportedly were spoken seven years ago in the afte… Continue Reading


October 18, 2006

THE REST OF THE STORY...

We pick up the story in 2003, when in the middle of a war and the aftermath of the dot-com burst, 9/11 and corporate scandals, the Republican-controlled Congress did the unthinkable--it cut taxes. Reactions were dire and predictable: fewer jobs, bigger deficits, weakened economy. An example was the comment of one House member who said, â??The real question is whether or not the GOP plan will create jobs and jumpstart our sagging economy? It will notâ?¦ The real question is whether the GOP plan w… Continue Reading


October 11, 2006

A DANGEROUS, NUCLEAR NORTH KOREA

North Koreaâ??s test of a nuclear bomb on October 9th brings into sharp focus a pervasive international diplomatic and security crisis that is over two decades in the making. Itâ??s been known for some time that North Korea has been on a crash course to produce nuclear weapons. The United States military has long had contingency plans in case of a nuclear attack by North Korea against our allies in the area, including South Korea and Japan. But this situation has become urgent of late and requir… Continue Reading


October 04, 2006

'TIS THE SEASON--TO VOTE

â??Tis the season: billboards, yard signs, political ads on radio, television and the Internet all signal the political wrangling that accompanies mid-term elections. Admittedly, political ads can become tiresome or frustrating depending on the campaign, but given the alternativeâ??no right to choose our leadersâ??I can live with the sometimes outrageous debates that characterize our elections. The tone and substance of these messages also serve as a reminder that voters should be discerning and… Continue Reading

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