Letters to the editor from this week's Chronicle:

Dear Editor
I think we've enjoyed as much of this as we can stand: Democratic "leadership" in the Senate, House and White House has resulted in reduced liberties, unprecedented massive spending, higher taxes, and loss of jobs. Vote Republican for sensible government and a return of individual freedoms and more local control.
Here that means: Otter, Labrador, Roberts, Shepherd, Nuxoll, Crapo, Luna, Rockwell, Chmelik, and other conservative Republicans.  
The proposed Constitutional amendments will erode our rights, lessen our control, and allow for more government competition with private business. Please vote "NO" on all of them.
I see lots of ads for Jim Rehder for Idaho County Commissioner that fail to note he is a Democrat. Is he ashamed? He should be, along with Democrat Minnick. Please remember Jim Chmelik and Raul Labrador, Republicans, for those seats.
Lucky Brandt

Letter to the Editor,
Spending must be cut, taxes need to be lowered so our economy can prosper to put people back to work. To do this we need conservative leaders in D.C. Even Walt Minnick agrees that new Republican leadership is needed in Washington. So we the people of Idaho need to elect Raul Labrador to Congress November 2 for less Government.
Shorty & Marge Arnzen
Cottonwood, Idaho

Jim vs. Jim
Having personally known incumbent Jim Rehder-D (commissioner, Dist. 3 Idaho Co.) and challenger Jim Chmelik-R for a number of years, I feel Jim Chmelik is a better fit for Idaho Co. residents.  His Pro-life, Pro-gun, Low Taxes, Pro-growth, Anti-Wolf, and protection of our constitutional rights stance is consistent with what the majority of constituents want for Idaho Co.  I know he will bring a fresh approach to economic growth and the fight against the increased big government intrusion into everything from wolf management to natural resource management.
On the other hand, in his own words the current commissioner knows how to “work within the system”.  Being active in securing replacement funds for roads and schools he has worked to get federal (taxpayer) dollars to replace timber dollars.  These will expire and nothing more than a temporary fix and another government entitlement program.  In my opinion Jim Chmelik will work towards a permanent fix of holding big govt. responsible and returning revenues and control back to the people of Idaho Co.  The Democratic incumbent is also receiving a full public pension and as a taxpayer I feel that alone is a conflict of interest to serve in public office.  Also being a proponent of term limits I feel his 6 yrs. of incumbency is long enough. Do we need more of the same or more of a change?
 Therefore I give my support to Jim Chmelik for Idaho County Commissioner.
Eric Hook, 
Riggins Idaho

Fresh Faces
Please vote for Chuck Rogers and Jim Chmelik as Idaho County Commissioners.
Join with “We the People,” in place of supporting political party labels and platforms. Experience with us the freedom and freshness of the political breezes that are sweeping across our country today. It is a very liberating feeling! We do need these changes in our County Commission. We do need both of these new fresh faces—now.
Thank you.
Bill and Carol Grady
Amos 5:24-“Let justice roll on like a river, and righteousness like a never ending stream.” (Our scripture and prayer for Idaho County since Nov. 2002).

The Gray-Haired Brigade
The gray-haired brigade is referred to as senior citizens, old fogies, geezers and in some case dinosaurs. Some of us are “baby boomers” getting ready to retire. Others have been retired for some time. We walk a little slower these days and our eyes and hearing are not what they once were. We worked hard, raised our children, worshipped our God and have grown old together.
Yes, we are the ones some refer to as being over the hill and that is probably true. But before writing us off completely, there a few things that need to be taken into consideration. In school we prayed to God and read the good book, studied English, history, math, and science, which enabled us to lead America into the technological age. We had to provide our own transportation to and from school. Most of us remember what outhouses were, many of us with first-hand experience. We remember the days of telephone party-lines, ten cent gasoline, and milk and ice being delivered to our homes. For those of you who don’t know what an icebox is, today they are electric and referred to as refrigerators. A few even remember when cars started with a crank. Yes, we lived those days. We are probably considered old fashioned and outdated by many, But there are a few things you need to remember before completely writing us off. We won World War II and fought in Korea and Vietnam. We can quote the Pledge of Allegiance, and know where to place our hand while doing so. We wore the uniform of our country with pride and lost many friends on the battlefield. We didn’t fight for Socialist States of America; we fought for the “Land of the Free and Home of the Brave.” We wore different uniforms but carried the same flag. We know the words of the Star Spangled Banner, America the Beautiful and God Bless America by heart, and you may even see some tears running down our cheeks as we sing. We have lived what many of you have only read about in history books and we feel no obligation to apologize to anyone for America.
Yes, we are old and slow these days but rest assured, we have at least one good fight left in us. We have loved this country, fought for it and died for it and now we are going to save it. It is our country and nobody is going to take it away from us. We took oaths to defend America against all enemies, foreign and domestic, and that is an oath we plan to keep. There are those who want to destroy this land we love; but like our founders, there is no way we are going to remain silent. It was the young people of this nation who elected Obama and the Democratic Congress. You fell for “hope and change” which in reality was nothing but “hype and lies.” You have tasted socialism and seen evil face to face, and have found you don’t like it after all.
You make a lot of noise, but most are all too interested in their careers and “climbing the social ladder” to be involved in such mundane things as Patriotism and voting. It appears that we care more about our grandchildren than some care about their children. Many of those who fell for the “great lie” in 2008 are now having buyer’s remorse. With all the education we gave you, you didn’t have sense enough to see through the lies and instead drank the kool-aid. Now you’re paying the price and complaining about it. No jobs, lost mortgages, higher taxes, and less freedom. This is what you voted for and this is what you got. We entrusted you with the torch of liberty and you traded it for a paycheck and a fancy house.
Well, don’t worry youngsters, the Gray Haired Brigade is here, and soon we are going to take back our nation. We may drive a little slower than you would like but we get where we’re going, and in November we’re going to the polls by the millions. This land does not belong to the Deceiver in the White House or to Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid. It belongs to We the People and We the People plan to reclaim our Land and our Freedom. We hope this time you will do a better job of preserving it and passing it along to our grandchildren.
So the next time you have the chance to say the Pledge of Allegiance, stand up, put your hand over your heart, honor your country, and thank God for old geezers of the Gray-Haired Brigade.
Shorty and Marge Arnzen

Support Chmelik,
I am very pleased to have the opportunity to support Jim Chmelik for Idaho County Commissioner. Ever since I first met Jim a number of years ago I noticed that he has spent a lot of his time working for good, responsible government through serving time and effort in the Idaho County Republican Committee.  
He has come to the State Legislature several times thru the years working on issues important to Idaho County citizens.
He is a true conservative believing that government at all levels should be economically efficient.  He believes that enabling the private sector to develop jobs is the solution to the present economic woes rather than turning to federal deficit spending solutions.
He is a man of character which is reflected through and verified by his wife and children
He has the qualifications to be the next Idaho County Commissioner. 
Paul Shepherd, Riggins
District 8 State Representative

Dear Editor,
As Idahoans, we have a rare chance to elect a governor that has the integrity, vision, and wisdom to lead this state into a new future.  A future that brings government back to the people and out of the hands of special interests. Keith Allred will govern for all of Idaho, not just the wealthy and well connected. He will lower taxes and properly fund education by cutting the unfair tax exemptions and sweetheart deals that are costing us millions in revenue. 
Keith Allred’s strength is focusing on the common values that unite us rather than the differences that divide us. This non partisan approach is reflected in the broad support he is getting from Republicans, Independents, and Democrats throughout the state. 
As Dennis S. Hansen, former Republican Senator from Soda Springs states, “I am very impressed with Keith’s ideas, vision, and ability to solve problems. I was even more impressed when I found that Keith was not tied to any political platform, but primarily concerned about the everyday citizens of Idaho. He is not bought by special interest groups that influence government away from the people.” 
Let’s vote for ourselves and our future by electing Keith Allred as governor on November 2. 
Mary Ann High
Grangeville, ID 83530

Letter to the Editor
This is the time for reason and balance.  We need candidates who decide issues on the facts after doing their homework and the necessary research.  We need candidates like Leta Strauss who does not rely on emotional catch phrases that create wedges between groups.   Leta Strauss understands the connection between a good state education and job opportunities.  She is knowledgeable about the issues and sticks to those that are  in the domain of the office for which she is running.  Leta Strauss is well read, intelligent, and exhibits common sense.  These are attributes our state sorely needs. 
Dewey Haeder

To the Editor
I’m a Democrat- and the recent Republican ads are right: “I don’t get it”.
I don’t get: 
Why Idaho’s predominantly Republican legislature was so willing to slash the public school budget by $128 million; 
Why Otter’s tax commission was allowed to short - change Idahoans by cutting some sweet, secret tax deals with big corporations;
Why state Republicans want to abolish the 17th amendment, which allows us to elect our U.S. Senators;
Why Otter crippled the State Parks’ budget with cutbacks, even though tourism is a burgeoning Idaho industry;
Why Otter initiated a clandestine plan with Big Oil to transport megaloads of equipment through our uniquely beautiful Clearwater/Lochsa corridor;
Why Otter pushed a 138% increase in vehicle registration fees for Idahoans, but only a 5% increase for the trucking industry, because “that’s all it was willing to pay”;
Why Otter was afraid to debate Allred in Lewiston.
Michelle Perdue

I enthusiastically support the retention of Jim Rehder in the Idaho County Commission.  We have a tireless individual already serving ALL of the County residents who represents the County’s interests on the State and Federal level whenever possible and supports Cities and businesses as no one else I have seen in my 50 plus year residence here.  And, as a bonus, he works well with the other Commissioners to get things done for the County.  What else could you ask for in a Commission candidate?  Please join me in supporting Jim Rehder in his bid to retain his County Commission seat.
Denis B. Duman

Letter to the editor
As the Republican speaker of the Idaho House of Representatives, I enthusiastically endorse Jim Chmelik to be your next Idaho County Commissioner. Jim Chmelik has worked hard standing for conservative values and has worked diligently to build trust among his fellow Republicans, rewarding him this past June with the Vice-Chairmanship of the Idaho County Republican Party. 
As a father and business owner he understands the role of government in our lives should be limited, our taxes low, and our opportunities endless. His perspective from the private sector will provide the answers we need to oppose the liberal policies of the Democrat party. Please join me in supporting Jim Chmelik and vote Nov 2 to bring a true conservative to the Idaho County Commission.
Lawrence Denny
Representative Lawrence Denny (R)
Speaker of the House

To the editor,
Jim Rehder has done a terrific job as Idaho County's Commissioner. He  is constantly meeting with the taxpayers in every part of  Idaho  County.
Too many times good folks like Jim get painted with the same brush as the Washington DC politicians.  He is all about solving problems and is  not about politics.  Jim always listens and is always looking for solutions to  our issues.
His hard work has helped all taxpayers and a vote for Jim Rehder will  continue to  help all of us in Idaho County.
Ron Beitelspacher

The Great Political Hoax
The Republican Party could  end abortion tomorrow!   Yet, they are not about to give up the power of their  political wedge issue.  The power to bash anyone not in their camp - at all levels of  government . . . . . .   
The Supreme Court's  majority ( 5  are conservative republicans)   have controlled the court for  4 years now- all of them appointed by Republican Presidents. These 5 conservative judges  control what comes before the court.   What's taking them so  long on  revisiting and overturning  Roe vs. Wade???  Maybe, those who control the Republican Party don't want to see the issue go away because it's a big vote getter for their party?
Why did the Republican National Committee (GOP Headquarters)  offer employee health  insurance covering ELECTIVE ABORTIONS  FOR 19 YEARS  until November  2009? See Google:  Elective abortion clause,  RNC.
A few of the perennial letter writers of the Chronicle need to do some soul searching and direct the  blame and anger at their own  party who seem to have pulled off the Great Political Hoax!
Jim Reed
Portland, OR

To the Editor
We support Jim Rehder for Idaho County Commissioner. Jim and his wife Sally are devoted to their family; they have raised three children who are well respected and model the same type of values their parents instilled in them.  Jim's motto is "Family First."  Jim has a long history of community support for schools, businesses and church. We have watched him as a County Commissioner for the past six years, and we see a hard working, dedicated person who listens to people and seeks what's best for Idaho County and the families who live here. When we have gone to Jim regarding issues related to our business, he has always addressed our concerns and promptly followed up with the outcome.  Please cast your vote to reelect Jim Rehder as our Idaho County Commissioner. 
Chad Jungert and Jan Rehder Jungert

Letter to the Editor, 
Who intervened to stop the governor’s proposed 138% increase of vehicle registration fees? Keith Allred (not butch otter)
Who found a $10 million error in the governor’s transportation funding bill? Keith Allred (not butch otter)
Who favors a review of every tax exemption as a means of increasing state revenue? Keith Allred (not butch otter)          
Who understands that cutting $128 million from Idaho’s public school budget was a short-sighted decision?  Keith Allred (not butch otter)          
Who wants to adequately staff the tax commission to facilitate collection of $100 million in overdue taxes? Keith Allred (not butch otter)
Who embraces diversity of opinions as a means of shaping policy? Keith Allred (not butch otter)
Who will always consult with Idahoans before making a major state decision? Keith Allred (not butch otter)
Who will always speak with truth and integrity? Keith Allred (not butch otter)
Keith Allred has spent “most of his life trying to find solutions that rise above special interests”.  Doesn’t it make sense to give Allred a chance to restore Idaho to its glory as “the sun coming down the mountain”?
Who should we elect as governor?  Keith Allred!
Dawn Kennedy-Haeder

To the Editor
On Nov. 2 there will be two choices for Idaho's State Superintendent of Public Instruction.
The first is Dr. Stan Olson, whom has worked in the educational field for 40 years. He recently retired from being superintendent to the Boise School District for eight years. He had his Doctorate in Educational Leadership and understands the concerns and problems with educators today.
The second is Tom Luna. Under Tom Luna education took a $69 million cut in 2009 and a $128.5 million cut in 2010. If not for the Jobs Bill thousands of teachers and staff would have lost their jobs in Idaho. Idaho's per pupil investment is second to last. Only Utah spends less money on their students.
Do we want to be known for not investing in our children's future for their educational needs?
Tom Luna has no classroom experience before being elected. He received his degree in measurement online in 2002.
Who are you going to choose to help manage our educational system? What do you want for the students of Idaho - leadership with experience and funding for education or more cuts to education?
I think our children deserve more. We need a change in leadership for Idaho schools.
Kim Uhlorn

To the Editor,
I vote Stan Olson for Idaho State Superintendent of Public Schools. Stan Olson is a respected, proven leader in education. Consider the differences between the candidates. A comparative analogy is whether you’d choose to have your child be taught by a substitute (tom Luna) or by a trained, professional educator (Olson)? What parent chooses a substitute? Luna is a businessman and politician. He hasn’t an education or administration degree. How is he capable of making experienced, knowledgeable decisions impacting on a child’s education?
Luna is supported by Idahoans for Choice in Education, a political action committee claiming choice in education; but, rather than working with the Idaho Education Association to advocate choice, they oppose IEA. Does this mean Luna too is at odds with the IEA? ICE appears self-serving. Their real mission is charter, virtual and home schools; traditional schools seem excluded. Does Luna support their mission to the detriment of public schools?
If choosing an educator, past principal and retired superintendent of the Boise School District is considered status quo, tell me how choosing a businessman and politician makes education better. Who hires a person lacking credentials when there’s a highly qualified and successful candidate? Stan Olson is the obvious choice.
Mary Christianson

To the Editor
Well folks, it's that time again.  Cast your ballot for Jimmy Rehder for County  Commissioner.  Regardless of party affiliation and how much mud can be slung by his opponents, his positive actions speak out loud and clear.  You won't find a better candidate.  He's proven himself time and again as a leader in our county that we can trust.  (plus his wife Sally sings like a nightingale).
Carl Skyrman

Letter to the editor
Jim Rehder stands up for us, when it comes to accessing rivers in Idaho County.  I am very impressed with Jim's skill at getting to the truth of an issue and then making a good fact based decision. 
He protected us from a special interest group's attempt to add more regulation to the lower Salmon River.  Jim got the facts, and was the FIRST public official to send his opposition to Idaho's congressional delegation and the governor.  He performs his job well as a commissioner.  I also like his work on the management of wolves and getting Riggins the land they need for the new Salmon River Gun Range.  Jim Rehder is a guardian of our freedoms in Idaho County!  Please come out and vote to reelect Jim Rehder on November 2nd.
Gerad Poxleitner, 
Owner, White Water Extreme
Grangeville, ID

Editor’s Note: The letters below are ones we didn't have room for in the print edition.

Would you hire a miner to build your new house?  Would you be in favor a writer of romance stories as head of our Idaho Agricultural Department?  Would you contract someone with no legal training to defend you in a Court of Law.  Why, then, would anyone vote a person to serve as the Idaho Superintendent of Schools, that is has no direct experience as a teacher, Principal, or Superintendent in any public or private school.  Candidate Tom Luna has never been an educator, Principal or Superintendent in any public or private school.  
In November, I urge you to vote for Stan Olsen as the State Superintendent of Idaho Schools.  He is a life-long educator and just recently retired as the Superintendent of the Boise Public Schools.  He understands school finance, has creative and realistic plans to improve education in the State of Idaho, and is an experienced educator who will seek to provide the best education possible for our children.  I have heard him speak and am very impressed with his potential leadership, his past educational experience, and his ability to get things accomplished.   In November, Vote for Stan Olson as Idaho’s next Superintendent of Schools
Herman Yates,
 Kamiah Idaho

Dear Editor,
In this  election I see a breath of fresh air in Idaho politics.  Jana Kemp, the Independent candidate for Idaho Governor has risen above partisan politics by reaching out to  Republicans, Democrats, and true independents to give Idaho voters a choice for real change.  One of her opponents does not really want to be governor, and the other  has never held public office. As a member of the Idaho house in 2004-2006, Jana Kemp spoke up for open government to the dismay of both  parties.  Jana also proposed $25 million in savings for Health and Welfare.   As governor Jana Kemp will make state government transparent and get rid of the “good ole’ boys” mentality of our current governor.  Jana has been a successful, independent Idaho business owner for over 17 years.  Her focus has been helping other businesses be successful with her leadership, management and training skills. As governor of Idaho, Jana Kemp will bring her skills of communication, leadership, and business management to the governor’s office.  She will also bring integrity, honesty, openness and accountability to our state government.  If you are tired of politics as usual, vote for a true independent, Jana Kemp for governor. 
Glida Bothwell

To the Editor
Support Labrador
I have served with Representative Labrador for several years.  During that time I have come to respect and trust his advice and views on many issues that the State Legislature deals with. In all that time the one thing I learned was that Labrador is honest.  Whether or not I agreed with him I learned that he means what he says and says what he means. 
I am very dismayed at how statements he has made has been taken out of context and used against him.  I have never seen him to be two-faced on any issue.
He really does know that we the people cannot stand any more deficit spending by government on any level or taxation on any level.  He really does understand that federal mandates not only is costing our future generations economically but also costing them freedoms. He really does understand how illegal immigrants are costing all levels of government. 
Raul is a conservative and proud of it.  He has proven to be a conservative leader in the Idaho Legislature.
Raul Labrador will serve as a conservative leader in Congress.
Remember he says what he means and means what he says.
Paul Shepherd, Riggins   
State Representative District 8

Letter to the Editor:  
I fully support Jim Chmelik for Idaho County Commissioner.  I am ready for a change in Idaho County.  I am ready for a commissioner that just gets the job done not one that continually talks about what he is doing and will do for us but never gets it done.  
Mr. Chmelik’s  opponent  is a  “true politician”, he goes to all the “right” meetings and knows the politically “correct” people.  I used to be one of those politically “correct” people until resigning from the Salmon River Joint School Board.  Now that I am no longer a person of leadership he does not give me the time of day.  What an eye opener for me!  
My personal frustration with the current county commissioners is that I have been working on solving a garbage issue in the Riggins area since April 2006.  Jim Rehder  has assured me several times that he is working on this issue.   Earlier this year he has passed the problem on to Skip Brandt and very little has been done.  There is still a large problem and a great solution has been presented to them!  
The question that I now ask myself is “What is it that I want from my elected officials?  Do I want them to be members of all the correct organizations?  Do I want them to be part of the “political establishment”?  The qualifications that I require for the county commissioners that I will vote for is they need to possess integrity, a hard work ethic, be pro-business, and  hold taxes to a minimum while providing needed services.   If we keep Jim Rehder in office I believe that the county will see planning and zoning, higher taxes, and  higher salaries for country workers in the near future.   During this tough economic time that agenda may not be what is best for  Idaho County.   Instead, let’s give Jim Chmelik a shot at this very important position in our county.  
Cindy Carlson 

Public Employee’s will be under attack this Legislative session!!
Idaho’s middle class, especially public employee’s, are going to be thrown under the bus this coming legislative session again. The average citizen needs to stop listening to the misleading statements by the Republican Party, particularly when they say NO NEW TAX’S.  They forget to remind you that they received huge tax brakes for their rich members under President Bush; and we, the average Americans, now have the burden of paying for them.  
We need balance in Government, that hasn’t occurred in Idaho since the days of Gov. Evans and Andrus.  
When the Right took complete control of Idaho under Gov. Batt things started on a downward spiral of greed.  Law’s were created to take away the rights of the average person; right to work was created to do just that, not to give you a job. Jobs now are shipped over seas or workers simply work illegally for cheap labor for the special interests running Idaho by the thousands.  If we keep buying into this type of Government we will soon be at a place of no return for the Middle class and the American worker will have lost everything except the right serve the right wing.  
Once again, the legislators are looking for more free money.  They will tap into the Public Employees retirement System and once again, put it at risk or dissolve it if you let them.  As a group Public Employees can finally make a difference, VOTE FOR THE OTHER GUY!!  The easiest way for success in Idaho will be for Public Employees everywhere to vote in a new Governor.  This more than anything will bring balance back to the Capital.  If every Teacher, Professor, Aid, Student, public employee of any sorts VOTES FOR THE OTHER GUY, we will make a difference!!
Be sure and VOTE! 
Dan Davis,
Cascade Idaho

Dear Sir:
Because of the present Pelosi/Reid/Obama agenda Democrats are abandoning their party in large numbers.  As I talk to Idahoans I see many who no longer support a party, but are determined to vote for the best candidate.
Many Democrat candidates have stopped talking about issues and gone to character assignations and misrepresentations.  Typical are the TV and radio ads of Congressman Walt Minnick.  Minnick has taken unclear statements made by Raul Labrador about illegal immigration and twisted them to mean just the opposite of what they were intended to mean. 
Many people can see through these ads and are changing their support to Labrador.  Labrador is one of the few who has a clear program for solving our immigration problem.
Labrador does not stand for amnesty; he has never stood for amnesty and further, as an immigration lawyer, he well knows how to solve our illegal immigration problem.  Our country cannot continue supporting large numbers of illegal immigrants: It is therefore imperative that we vote for Raul Labrador.  If you have doubts about his stand simply check out his web site. www.Labrador4Idaho.com 
Jim Hollingsworth
Coeur d’Alene

To the Editor
My husband and I usually disagree about politics and who to vote for.  But we agree that the best candidate in this year’s election for governor in Idaho is  Jana Kemp, who is running as an independent.  Jana is not affiliated with any political party and so you might not have heard much about her.  You can see Jana Kemp in the gubernatorial debate which first aired on  October 13 and compare what she says with Keith Allred and Butch Otter. 
If you missed the debate you can see it online at any time here:  http://ktvb.zidaho.com/itsyourtime/
There will be another gubernatorial debate on Idaho Public Television on October 28  (8 pm to 9:30 pm). 
Every vote counts.  Make sure you vote for the person who you think can do a great job as Governor.   For me, that choice is Jana Kemp because she has experience both as an elected official and as a small business owner.  
Be an informed voter and vote for the person who can do the best job.  I am voting for Jana Kemp because she is a person who has ideas and integrity.  
Independent candidates can win–Minnesota had a governor who was an independent candidate.  But independent candidates can only win if people vote for them.  My husband and I are voting for Jana Kemp, the candidate who brought us together.  If Jana can do that, imagine what she can do for Idaho.
Pamela Kleibrink Thompson

To the Editor
Since the October 13th gubernatorial debate, I’ve heard several people remark that Jana Kemp was the best candidate, yet they weren’t voting for her because they didn’t think she could win. First, there are no guarantees in politics–if the polls were always right, we wouldn’t need elections at all. Second, voting for a less qualified candidate because you think the more qualified candidate can’t win is exactly how we get the mediocre leaders we are now burdened with. Third, the privilege of self-government and the right to vote are such precious gifts, they should never be used casually or cynically. Each of us has a responsibility to cast his or her vote for the best candidate. If we do less, how can we possibly expect a better outcome? 
I’m voting for Jana Kemp, the best candidate for Governor.
Lance Thompson
Meridian, Idaho

Idaho is headed for a train wreck!
After watching the recent gubernatorial debate I think one thing is clear, Idaho is headed for a train wreck, regardless of who becomes the governor.
Allred is unequivocal that if he becomes the governor he will not cut education any further.  However, with the state already 300 to 350 million short on revenue collections and growing, the only way to prevent more cuts is to raise taxes.  Interestingly, he followed by saying the state’s personal income tax was one of the highest in the country and needed to come down to stimulate the economy; a position I endorse.  So how would he save education from further cuts and reduce the personal income tax at the same time?  He would put a sales tax on services.  Currently Idaho has about 1.75 billion dollars in sales tax exemptions.  However, to offset the current revenue shortfall and provide a reduction in the personal income tax, the amount of sales tax on services needed would constitute the largest tax increase in Idaho history!  Allred says he’s an independent running as a democrat, but he sounds like a true democrat to me.
Otter on the other hand refuses to take further cuts off the table while he ducks the question of whether he’d sign a tax increase into law.  He admitted in the debate Idaho is about to go over a cliff.  Unfortunately for Idaho, he has no idea or the courage if he did, to know what to do about it.
I predict, unless there is a major restructuring of government, which will not happen with our current leadership, whoever becomes the next governor will sign into law a temporary tax increase that will become permanent!   Otter and the legislature have been living on borrowed time; balancing the budget with federal stimulus and rainy day money.  Now the chickens of bad policies and poor leadership in Idaho are about to come home to roost.      
So buckle your seat belts and take your pick Idaho, it will make little difference who becomes the next governor.    
Rex Rammell, 
Idaho Falls

Most of my life I’ve avoided politics. I’ve believed that weeding through the truth and fiction in the political arena would require constant observation, aided by spies. So I’ve steered clear from the pulpit, and I make my statements with paint.
There is some danger in this political inaction. I know it. We need leaders. Hopefully we can trust them to do the right thing. I’m not locked into any party. I’m an independent thinker. I believe political decisions should be based on common sense, and the good of the people, not party politics or lobby agendas. But it doesn’t seem to work that way anymore, particularly in Idaho. 
Six months ago my husband told me he was going to run for US Senate. He has always read voraciously about politics in this country, and he was frustrated that no one in Idaho was willing to oppose Mike Crapo - again. Tom is self-made, eloquent, and honest. Go online. Watch the debates. He’s fighting a David and Goliath kind of battle, but I’ve seen him use a slingshot -- and he’s got very good aim.  This time Idaho has a choice. Tom Sullivan. Vote. www.tomsullivanforsenate.com
Kelly Sullivan
Driggs, Idaho  

Cottonwood, Idaho 83522


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