Stogies, Constitutional & Audits

Attempts to change Idaho’s primary voting system passed Senate State Affairs Tuesday after some terse conversation between the committee Republicans and Rod Beck, a former legislator that is pushing to close the primaries.

Tuesday saw lots of discussions in the hallways and closed offices, caucuses and who knows where else. But the end game is still not clear. The Senate voted this morning to overturn an Otter veto on drug treatment funding.

Also, Gillette arrested, Legislative party life and Craig in Lewiston in today’s Newsrack…

Unaffiliated voters could pick a primary. Under bill that is moving through the Senate. Party hacks will have to vote their own ticket. Bill is headed to full Senate. Russell in the Spokesman. Looking to 2010 elections. Shifrin, AP in the Press Tribune. Keith Allred: “By prohibiting registered members of rival parties from crossing over, this bill narrows the infringement substantially.” Davidson in the Post-Register. Public airing. Hopkins in the Times-News.

Senate Dems try to pull day care, revolving door bills out of committee. Both attempts fail on party line vote. Denton Darrington of Declo: “Part of the power and part of the responsibility of being a committee chairman is to set the agenda.” Russell in the Spokesman.

Party like it’s 1973. Not. Legislative social life takes a check. Hoffman in the BW.

Idaho higher ed gets $20 swag from feds. BSU’s Kustra: “This earmarking process is the only way some of our faculty who are younger and have less research experience and don’t have the research clout can get the funding to pursue research projects.” Worries about Craig’s loss. No-earmarks Sali sponsored five. Roberts in the Statesman based on Chronicle of Higher Ed research.

Druzin: Take it outside. End of session fights underway. Committee to Rod Beck: Is it because you’re a loser? Beck: No. Dems to Repubs: Hear our bills. Repubs: No. Druzin in the Statesman.
Hollywood slush fund passes Senate with no funding. Bill allows commerce to offer sales tax incentives to movie crews in Idaho. Stegner: “We are going to literally pay people to come to our beautiful state and then leave.” Shifrin, AP in the Press Tribune.

Pledge this. When electeds step to the press on allegiances they misunderstand the role of the press. And when marginal patriots malign the press in a press release they get a story. Darr in the BW. Fox News: Under fire.

Sid Smith on race for former boss’s seat. Former Craig staffer, now head of Idaho GOP tells Washington Times Fishwrap: “These candidates can all stand on their own merits and they’re their own individual and they plan to talk about what they want to do and what they’ve done in their professional and political careers. I don’t see it playing a big role.”

Craig stumps for Craig-Wyden, after opposing its reauthorization. Tells Lewiston group he is trying to find another five years of funding for help to rural schools. Craig: “I wish I could paint a picture and say the check’s in the mail, although I cannot say that.” Kramer in the LMT. Idaho Senate tries to step up to the plate. Ferguson in the LMT.

Ron Gillette arrested. Charged with assault in Stanley. No details, but it’s in the Post Register. Statesman says anti-wolf crusader attacked Lynn Stone of Defenders. Barker in the Statesman.

On the blogs: Press corps moves the smoke-filled room to northside Annex.

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