Vote Paulette JORDAN for IDAHO Benewah and Latah Counties

Paulette Jordan, age 34, a long time Idahoan, born and raised in Northern Idaho, points to her experience to guide her in bringing balance to the State Legislature while advancing the interests of her district.

Jordan is a native and life-long resident of Idaho, as well as an enrolled member of the Coeur d’Alene Tribe, who has been involved in local politics and community activism for years. She has served three years as the youngest elected member of the Coeur d’Alene Tribal Council.  Follow her on Facebook.

Ms. Jordan, who holds three degrees from the University of Washington, and a Certificate of Study in Conflict Resolutions and Strategic Negotiations from The Washington Center in Washington D.C., is a strong voice and advocate of issues that matter most to the local community.banner6v2

Education, jobs and the economy are major priorities for Jordan, who aims to strengthen education and prioritize resources for Idaho schools. Her focus is to also promote economic opportunities that strike an important balance between industry and appropriate protections for local property owners and our unique quality of life.

Ms. Jordan maintains activity with both state and county interests.  Currently, Jordan serves on a variety of committees, boards and councils such as the Idaho Heritage Trust Council as an At-Large Trustee and a Regional Board member to the Northwest Disability Action Center striving to improve the lives of veterans, seniors and youth with disabilities. She has also served as Precinct Chair and continues to serve as the State Committeewoman for Benewah County. Ms. Jordan has twice been elected to represent Idaho as the Idaho State At-Large Delegate for the Democratic National Convention, and has been a National Committeewoman for the Idaho Young Democrats.

In addition, Jordan is currently serving her third elected term as the Gaming Co-Chair for the Affiliated Tribes of Northwest Indians representing 56 regional tribes and a Northwest Representative Executive Board Member for the National Indian Gaming Association, which represents 186 Tribal Nations throughout the U.S. The Association serves to advance community developments and promote tribal self-sufficiency through economic growth, as well as broaden tribal economic impacts made throughout each state, creating jobs and expanding education opportunities for every community.  Jordan was also appointed by the Executive Board to serve as the Finance Chair overseeing executive operations on behalf of the national organization.

Ms. Jordan continues to stay active with her public and private business developments as a steadfast business strategist.  Jordan is a longtime advocate for human rights and is active in her local community.  She is engaged with local organizations for veterans, youth and education. She enjoys mentoring and tutoring young people.  She is also called upon frequently as a national speaker on economic development and youth leadership.

Paulette resides in the countryside of northern Idaho enjoying motherhood, playing sports, riding horseback and outings appreciating the great outdoors with family and friends.


Join #idleg candidate Travis Manning @ManningforIdaho and gubernatorial candidate @AJforIdaho Balukoff this Monday #Caldwell



Join Travis Manning and Idaho gubernatorial candidate A.J. Balukoff this Monday, 4 to 5 pm in Caldwell.

All political parties are invited.

Feel free to bring questions for us. Free Mexican food!

Travis Manning:

For over 20 years, Travis Manning’s honesty and hard work have helped thousands of kids and made his communities, and Idaho, a better place.

Travis, 43, and wife Ann moved to Idaho 9 years ago because they thought it was the best place to raise a family.  Travis and Ann have 3 children, the twin boys, Cael and Whitaker age 4, and their adopted daughter from China, Eliza, 3, adopted during his first run for the Idaho House in 2012.  He is an Eagle Scout and former high school wrestling standout from Tacoma, Washington who has deep Idaho roots, and graduated from now BYU-Idaho in 1993.

As a teacher and community builder, Travis is active in his teacher organization serving on numerous committees.  He has been a Scout leader for much of his adult life.  And he has helpedsmallmug watchdog our democracy as Executive Director of The Common Sense Democracy Foundation of Idaho, enabling parents, teachers and community members to learn and speak out about our public schools and how we can better protect them.  He has been a voice for those who were afraid to speak out.

Travis has worked to shape the character of Idaho’s greatest natural resource: our kids.  He has been a public voice of reason with the op-eds he has written in newspapers statewide.  He has worked with legislators from both parties to make sure the voices of Idaho citizens are heard at the statehouse.

Travis Manning applies the same basic values to everything he does:  Act responsibly.  Speak truth to power.  Put other people first.  Support fair treatment and respect for all Idahoans.  As a principled leader, it is why he has been able to make such a difference in the lives of thousands of kids he has worked with over the years and it is why he will be able to make such a difference for Caldwell, and why he will be able to do even more as the next Representative in Caldwell’s District 10 seat A.



A.J. Balukoff:

AJ writes: More than 30 years ago, my wife Susie and I moved to Idaho because we believed it was the best place in the country to raise our children. Over the years, our family has enjoyed Idaho’s natural beauty and its culture, and I’ve had the good fortune to build a successful business and serve on the boards of several organizations. We have proudly watched our family grow to eight children and 30 grandchildren.

But now I see how our state government has neglected our public schools for far too many years and the toll that has taken on our great state, and I worry about the future facing my grandchildren and all of Idaho’s children.  And state economic policies are making it harder than ever for families to make ends meet.

That is why I’m running for governor.

While traveling around Idaho, I have heard from many Idahoans who are deeply worried about critical issues like our education system and economy. I’ve heard people talk about the urgent need for transparency, balance, and accountability in state government.

Unfortunately, Gov. Otter and other state leaders continue to focus on issues that polarize and divide people rather than bring us together. Many of these issues have no impact on most Idahoans. But they take time, energy, and resources away from the important issues: education and economy.

Idaho ranks 50th in the nation in the amount we invest in each student. We rank 47th in the rate of high school graduates who go on to college. State cuts in education spending have forced 40 districts to hold school only four days a week.

Education and our economy go hand in hand. We are  50th in the nation in per-capita income, and second in minimum-wage jobs. Idahoans are commuting out of state or working two jobs to make ends meet. The lack of good-paying jobs is undermining ourwonderful quality of living.

This is unacceptable.

balukoffimageAs a certified public accountant for many years, and a businessman, and as a member of the board of several organizations, including St. Luke’s Treasure Valley, the Boise Philharmonic, and Boy Scouts of America, I have always recommended actions and policies that are fiscally sound.

As governor, I will use those same values and priorities to set policies that make sense for Idaho—not just fiscally and economically, but also for the people of Idaho. I will focus on the concerns of hardworking Idahoans, and listen to the public and key stakeholders rather than signing laws that ignore important voices. I am running for governor to restore balance, transparency, and accountability to our statehouse.

My father had only an eighth-grade education, but he insisted that each of us kids get a good education. I was the first of my grandfather’s descendants to obtain a college degree. I want to ensure that every Idaho child has an equal opportunity for a quality education.

With your support and our shared vision, we will restore the greatness of the beautiful state of Idaho.


Does this seem ethical to you?

edbd1a09-f86e-4264-a63c-5a9e5febb565Is it legal for the Speaker of the Idaho House to push a bill through the State Legislature on behalf of a development company only after that company fires a political opponent and hires a political ally?

The answer is yes.

Is it ethical?  You be the judge.

Back in 2007, a California development company pushed for a bill that would allow it to pay for an interchange on I-90 with the sales tax collected at a yet-to-be-built Cabela’s store located next to the interchange.

The bill appeared to be going nowhere. Then the company asked Speaker of the House Lawerence Denney for advice. Soon after, the company fired its lobbyist, a established moderate Republican who opposed Denney’s run for speaker, and hired Julie Ellsworth, a Denney supporter and former House member who lost her seat four months earlier.

After that, the bill sailed through the legislature.

The appearance of impropriety prompted calls for a “cooling off” period, a mandatory two-year break between legislating and lobbying.

Denney would have none of it. “I have no desire to dictate who can and cannot get a job working as a lobbyist,” he opined.

Days later, Denney changed his mind, announcing that he would co-sponsor a “cooling off” bill. He did so tepidly. ‘‘I’m still not sure it’s necessary, but in this business, perception is reality,’’ he said. 

Unfortunately, the bill came too late in the session. It died in committee without a hearing.

The next year, a similar bill was referred to committee at the beginning of the session where it sat for months before dying without a hearing.

Give Denney credit. He’s right. Perception is reality in the business of government. Idaho’s Secretary of State’s office has a long tradition of honesty and impartiality. The Gem State doesn’t need that tarnished with cronyism and malfeasance.

Idaho needs somebody with the reputation of fairness and honesty.

Idaho needs Holli Woodings for Secretary of State.

Heidi Knittel for Senate Dist. 12 Endorsed by Idaho Education Association (IEA)

Heidi-Knittel-for-Senate-1Nampa, Idaho — Heidi Knittel, Idaho State Senate Candidate, District 12, has been endorsed by the Idaho Education Association (IEA) and Nampa Education Association (NEA). “It is an honor to be recognized by this esteemed, 120-year strong organization.” Knittel said, referring to the Education Association.

Knittel supports IEA’s vision to deliver on their promise of a great public school for every Idaho student. “Public education is the gateway to opportunity. It is vital to prepare our students to succeed in a competitive and diverse world,” Knittel said, concurring with an IEA Core Values.

Knittel understands that, in order to meet their vision, education professionals must be championed at the Legislative level. As State Senator, Knittel plans to do just that. “I will continue to advocate for educator’s rights, including restored education funding, increased teacher base salary and more opportunities for professional development.”

Heidi Knittel is 42 years old, lives and works in Nampa and has a master’s degree in psychology. She is running for Idaho State Senate District 12. Her decision to run was born out of her experience as a program director at a small, Nampa business, where she speaks on behalf of Idaho’s most vulnerable citizens.

As a mental healthcare professional for more than a decade, Heidi has been a passionate advocate in the citizen legislative process to help her clients have better futures. She has navigated Idaho’s sometimes slow-moving bureaucracies to help Idaho’s vulnerable citizens. She has participated in public meetings impacting clients, sponsored by agencies such as Idaho’s Department of Health and Welfare.

Heidi is a member of the Mental Health Providers Association of Idaho (MHPAI) and the National Council for Behavioral Health (NCBH). She serves on the committee of Idaho KIDS COUNT.

For more information, see:

Idaho Freedom Foundation Director Wayne Hoffman: Electing A.J. Balukoff over Gov. C.L. “Butch” Otter makes sense from a conservative’s perspective

As Idaho Freedom Foundation Director Wayne Hoffman sees it, electing Balukoff over Gov. C.L. “Butch” Otter makes sense from a conservative’s perspective. It may be one way to put the Republican Party on track.

For instance, Hoffman says, if a Gov. Balukoff were to push for Medicaid expansion, it would be dead on arrival in a Republican-dominated Legislature. If Otter were to propose Medicaid expansion, lawmakers would look more closely at the potential cost savings for counties. A Balukoff administration that proposes repeal of sales-tax exemptions likely would go nowhere in the Legislature. If Otter proposed the same thing, legislators could view it as a sound way to raise needed revenue. …

“Butch is vulnerable,” Hoffman said. “He won against a no-name and under-funded candidate with slightly more than 50 percent of the vote. You have to think that’s problematic.”

Idaho Statesman: Education veteran declares candidacy for legislature

John McCrostie, a 14-year resident of Garden City and an Idaho schoolteacher for 11 years, announced his candidacy Friday for seat 16A in the Idaho House of Representatives.

Democrat Grant Burgoyne occupies the seat now, but is running in the 2014 election to replace retiring Sen. Les Bock.

According to a statement published Friday, McCrostie has taught music in Mountain Home, Gooding and Boise, and plans to earn a law degree from Concordia University School of Law in 2015.

Ridenbaugh Press: “Wayne Hoffman obviously does not trust the people”

Exhibit A: Lobbyist and activist Wayne Hoffman. Hoffman, a former newspaper reporter and Bill Sali mouthpiece, masquerades as a journalist and runs a so-called independent news bureau. In truth, this “news bureau” is nothing more than a front for Hoffman’s advocacy organization that, in all probability, is funded by libertarian billionaires David and Charles Koch. They own Koch Industries, an incredible conglomerate operating out of Wichita, Kansas  …  Hoffman’s claim to run a real news organization is disputed by the Capitol Correspondent’s Association, the group that accredits legitimate reporters, and which refuses to characterize either he or his three researchers as reporters.

Secondly, one uses the word “probable” regarding his sugar daddy because Hoffman refuses to divulge all donors to the Freedom Foundation that pays his salary and those of his support staff. True journalists (and most registered lobbyists) have either an ethical or legal requirement for transparency. The public has a right to know who is paying for lobbying and advocacy. Such disclosure permits individuals to draw their own conclusions as to why a particular group is trying to influence the legislature or the governor.

Wayne Hoffman thumbs his nose at this thought, despite touting transparency and the public’s right to know in a post-legislative report. He says some of his donors prefer anonymity, and under our tax code they have that right. Touting transparency for government, but refusing to be transparent as you work to influence government is simple hypocrisy. Hoffman’s activities belie any claim to his being a journalist. He is a lobbyist and an advocate of right-wing, libertarian causes funded by someone with deep pockets and without the courage of their convictions. Hoffman and his foundation were up to their eyeballs this legislative session, pushing for the discredited and bizarre notions of a supposed right of a state to nullify federal law a state does not agree with. (The Civil War settled that one.)

Read the full story:
Carlson: Transparency for Thee, Not for Me

Published by Randy Stapilus

Wayne Hoffman’s “market solution” logic starts to run into problems.


This is where the “market solution” logic starts to run into problems. Because if you assume that Nampa and Idaho Falls do need this kind of organized convention and visitor effort, whether public or private, then someone will have to pay for it. If a coalition of motels, restaurants et al wanted to undertake the effort, it would cost them. And they would have to do what businesses usually have to do under such cases when their costs of doing business rise: In this case, raise room rates and meal costs. Same end result. Except that the businesses would have to be responsible for making the tourism effort work – the risk would be concentrated among them, rather than spread through a community that would broadly, one would think, be getting some benefit from larger visitation.

There are, after all, reasons why these business people aren’t doing it. It may not pencil out as an immediate profit-generator. There may be difficulties getting the various businesses to work together in a mutually agreeable way. Plenty of reasons come to mind, but most of them wouldn’t advance the case of the one-size-fits-all “market solution.”

Full story: So why don’t they do it?

Boise State’s Idaho Public Policy Survey: Just 49 percent say Idaho is headed in right direction

Boise State University’s Public Policy Center has released preliminary findings from its 20th Idaho Public Policy Survey, providing an overview of public opinion about a wide range of policies, issues and trends that impact the governance of the State of Idaho.

Conducted in November and December, the survey of 525 randomly selected Idaho residents focused on key issues being discussed by policy makers and pundits across the nation, including the economy, tax and spending policies, health care, education and immigration. This preliminary release of 17 questions also included general topics on people’s attitudes and philosophies about government, questions that long have been part of the survey and offer historical perspective on Idahoans’ viewpoints on government.

“It’s very important to us to be relevant to today’s discussions, but at the same time be able to provide perspective on how attitudes shift and change over time,” said Stephanie Witt, director of Boise State’s Public Policy Center. “We hope this survey offers very interesting and useful insight into the way Idahoans view their government and the policies it pursues.”

A central finding was that just 49 percent of those polled felt that the state is headed in the right direction, a significant drop from 2007 (when 67 percent approved of the state’s direction) and the highest percentage of disapproval recorded since the question was first asked in 1997. Analysts of the survey results said evidence for the reason behind the dissatisfaction might be found in other survey questions about the economy and the government’s posture on related issues.

For example, 56 percent of those polled said that their household has been impacted by cuts in state programs and services, while 51 percent said that jobs, the economy and wages are the most important issues facing Idaho today. Additionally, 56 percent feel that budget cuts have affected the quality of their children’s education, and 50 percent believe the state is not doing enough to spur economic development in their region.

Another indicator, according to Carole Nemnich, associate director of the Public Policy Center, could be significant growth among survey respondents who identify themselves as politically independent.

“The responses on the economy and the shifts in political identification seem to indicate that people are relatively dissatisfied,” said Nemnich.

In all, the survey included approximately 40 questions. Remaining data will be released through the spring as analysis becomes available, including regional breakdowns for the eastern, southwestern and northern sections of Idaho.

Other survey findings released today include:


  • Two-thirds of survey respondents (67 percent) think immigration is a problem in Idaho.
  • Just over 62 percent believe counties should deny indigent health services to undocumented workers; 31 percent disagree.
  • 58 percent of respondents think Idaho should pass an immigration law similar to one recently enacted in Arizona, and 55 percent think such a law would reduce illegal immigration.
  • More than 7 of 10 respondents (73 percent) think that a program should be created to allow illegal immigrants to stay in this country permanently.

Health care

  • Idaho should be allowed to opt out of the 2010 federal health care reform law, according to 58 percent of survey respondents.
  • 63 percent believe that public funds should be used to help provide health insurance to people who cannot afford it.
  • Taxes/spending
  • 56 percent of respondents think that raising the state sales tax by $0.01 to help close the budget gap is a bad idea; 39 percent think it is a good idea.


  • 53 percent think Idaho should raise the sales tax to support the K-12 public school budget, while 42 percent disagree.
  • 59 percent say the state is not investing enough in higher education, while 32 percent disagree.

To see more of the preliminary survey results and learn more about Boise State’s Public Policy Center, visit

Click here for the original story by Mike Journeefull story by Mike Journee

You can now mingle with Idaho lawmakers at Statehouse eatery

Small signs sometimes signal big changes.

Such is the case with the 8›-by-11-inch “Open to the Public” sign outside the Legislative Dining Room on the Garden Level of the Capitol.

When the 76-seat restaurant opened a year ago, it was exclusively for the 105 lawmakers and invited guests. Legislative staff could order take-out. Six weeks into the 2010 session the rule was relaxed, and the public was admitted from 7 to 11:30 a.m.

That prohibition slipped, too. “The last couple weeks they said, ‘Don’t sweat it. Don’t discourage anybody,’ ” said Ronda DiGiorgio, who operates the cafe.

When lawmakers convened this year, all limits were lifted and hours extended to 3 p.m. “We’re up 40 percent over last year,” DiGiorgio said.

“We felt like we needed a vendor that was profitable,” said Senate Majority Leader Bart Davis, R-Idaho Falls. “This helps.

Read more: