Letters to the editor - 11-17-2013

November 17, 2013 

Mark Patterson

Regarding Rep. Mark Patterson and his concealed carry license I have three things to say:

It is ridiculous to write legislation that asks law enforcement officers who have sworn an oath to uphold the laws of the city, county, state and federal government, to not enforce the law, any law. It puts them in an untenable position that limits their ability to protect the public and themselves. Anyone who thinks otherwise needs educating.

Sheriffs Raney and Killeen are both strong advocates of gun rights and have a proven history as such. Additionally, having worked for both men reviewing, issuing, and revoking CCW permits for over 15 years, I can attest that they carefully measure each application against the specifics of the law. They do that because they are professionals. Anyone who thinks otherwise needs educating. Wake up, Boise, get rid of this guy.

PAM BABBITT, Nampa

I’ve always used the Statesman endorsements as one of many data points when considering political candidates.

I have assumed they were based on interviews with the candidates and a review of their voting records.

I found Dan Popkey’s article on Rep. Patterson’s history with the legal system and his refusal “to offer details about much of his background” enlightening.

I wonder if the Editorial Board will follow Dan’s example and be more rigorous in its future review of candidates’ backgrounds before making an endorsement.

BOB FRITSCH, Boise

Sheriff

When is Gary Raney up for re-election? I’m very suspicious of him — he’s more interested in the federal-local “fusion center” concept, complete with all the money, toys, and training that comes with it, than local law enforcement.

I believe this is why he was working against Patterson’s House Bill 219 and similar efforts, including the breach of confidential information on Patterson’s concealed weapons permit application.

Patterson may or may not have 40-year-old skeletons in the closet, which he may or may not be able to eloquently explain, but the sheriff’s actions, taken together, represent a terrible affront to liberty.

We need a local, constitutional sheriff. A sheriff’s office that’s a mere field office for the DHS, DOJ, etc., is extremely dangerous, encouraging the militarization of the officers and divided allegiance. In short, the sheriff’s attempts to pave the way for federal gun regulations are not acceptable here in Idaho. We desperately need a solid constitutional candidate for sheriff ... and soon.

SEAN BORZEA, Boise

Ysursa

It’s sad to learn of Ben Ysursa’s decision not to seek reelection as Idaho’s secretary of state. He is an extraordinarily principled individual, dedicated to the statutory requirements of his office and to the citizens of our great state. He will be sorely missed.

Early in my career, I was fortunate to have had the opportunity to work with Ben and been able to take advantage of his expertise and guidance. There was only one way to do the job: by the book.

As others have noted, it is absolutely critical that Idahoans do everything in their power to ensure our next secretary of state is as principled, nonpartisan, and evenhanded as his or her predecessor.

Ben, I join all Idahoans in commending you for a job well done.

DEAN SANGREY, Garden Valley

The Statesman’s editorial board praises Secretary of State Ben Ysursa “on the way Ysursa goes about the job.” Ben deserves praise from all Idahoans for running his office in a nonpartisan and evenhanded way.

His work on the Idaho Land Board, however, is a different story. Mr. Ysursa voted to approve the Land Board’s Asset Management Plan for the state to buy commercial real estate with school endowment money. www.idl.idaho.gov/am/amfiles/122011-AMP-final.pdf

In addition to a 414 unit storage facility and brew pub in Boise, the plan calls for buying office, retail and light industrial business (page 23).

The secretary of state believes that the Land Board should “operate a profit-oriented business within a government agency.” (page 26) In order to do this the plan aims to “change social and political attitudes and values, markets and products.” (page 28)

This is a dangerous plan for Idaho and puts the state in direct competition with private enterprise. This Land Board Business Plan must be rejected and it will take the strong leadership of Lawerence Denney as secretary of state to stop it in its tracks.

ROBERT FORREY, Nampa

Butch Otter

What is happening to Idaho? First, the “public servant” running our health exchange is making $175,000 a year.

Next we have Gov. Otter going to Coeur d’Alene to raise money with liberal New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie. Butch used to claim to be a conservative, even a libertarian. Now after watching him push the health exchange, we know the truth; he has become another big government politician, granting favors to special interests. Unfortunately a perfect Ottercare companion to the Obama-hugging Christie.

PEMBROKE T. RATHBONE, Marsing

In Gov. Butch Otter’s recent article regarding the government shutdown, he stated, “Our state agencies were working behind the scenes to determine if state or even private sources would be allowed to pay some of the federal workers needed to ensure our economy could keep moving.”

Has he gone completely mad? Since when has any federal worker ever done anything to keep our economy moving?

Most of them are employed to help stifle what’s left of a once vibrant and growing economy i.e., OSHA, EPA, USDA, NRCS and the list goes on and on. Every government job is created by destroying one in the private sector.

It was this tax-and-spend philosophy that led to our economic meltdown in the first place and Otter’s position is keep on taxing, spending and regulating to keep our economy moving. Exactly the opposite is needed.

BOB VICKARYOUS, Bonners Ferry

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