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Updated: 1 hour 27 min ago

Fulcher OK w/Explaining Flipflop

April 15, 2014 - 3:25pm

Russ Fulcher says he changed his mind about Common Core for a simple reason: “It didn’t come as advertised.” Fulcher said he thought the math and English language arts standards would etch local control into Idaho education. But he now believes the opposite has occurred. Even though State Department of Education staffers have been involved in developing the Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium exams, Fulcher doesn’t believe Idaho had significant input in writing the Common Core-aligned exams, and Idaho teachers will have no choice but to teach to the test. So as Fulcher travels the state on his gubernatorial campaign, the Republican state senator from Meridian is having to explain why he now opposes standards he supported in the Senate Education Committee in 2011. “I’m not embarrassed by that at all”/Kevin Richert, IdahoED NEWS. More here. (Photo: IdahoED NEWS)

Question: Do you accept Fulcher's reasons for flipflopping on Common Core?

9 Televised GOPrimary Debates Set

April 15, 2014 - 3:20pm

The Idaho Debates will feature a series of nine debates in Idaho races in advance of the May 20 primary election, the Idaho Press Club, the League of Women Voters of Idaho and Idaho Public Television announced today. The Idaho Debates have featured face-offs between Idaho election candidates for more than 30 years; this year’s primary debates, broadcast statewide, continue that tradition/Betsy Russell, Eye on Boise. List and time for debates here.

Question: The best thing re: the stiff competition between competing wings of the Idaho Republican Party? Candidates can't bail on debates, as they'll probably do in the general election. Thoughts?

Jeffrey Child, 58, CdA Attorney, RIP

April 15, 2014 - 3:17pm

Jeffrey “Jeff” Andrew Child, 58, of Coeur-d’Alene, Idaho, formerly of Carbondale, Ill., died Saturday, April 5, as a result of a snorkeling accident off the West Coast of Mexico near La Manzanilla. Jeff was born Feb. 6, 1956, to Robert and Frances Child in Springfield. He graduated from Carbondale Community High School in Illinois and from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. In 1980 Jeff received his law degree from the University of Colorado at Boulder; there he met fellow law student Heidi L. Fisher, who became his wife of 33 years. Since moving to Coeur d'Alene in 1980, Jeff and Heidi have partnered in the law firm of Child and Fisher. Shortly after coming to Coeur d'Alene, Jeff became very active in the United Way organization and annual United Way campaigns for several years.

DFO: I just heard about this tragedy.

Mansfield Endorses Fulcher For Guv

April 15, 2014 - 1:53pm

Idaho's sitting Governor, Butch Otter, and I have known each other for 23, almost 24 years. Many of those years have been friendly years - only distancing ourselves for a brief period of time when one another got in the way of the other's mutually-desired GOP nomination to US Congress - a dozen-plus years ago. He won. I endorsed him the very next day and worked to see him get elected three times as Congressman and then twice as Governor. I have a deep affection and fondness for Butch and Lori Otter. I also have a deep, decades-long friendship with Russ Fulcher and his family. I write about Russ in my book BEAUTIFUL NATE. Originally, since neither candidate had asked for my endorsement I withheld it. I just sat and watched - until this week. Maybe it was today being Tax Day, maybe it was just my nature to think long and then act...Today I decided to act and endorse State Senator Russ Fulcher for the GOP nomination for Governor of Idaho/Dennis Mansfield. More here.

Question: What will be the impact of this endorsement?

Mack: Bundy Women To Be Shields

April 15, 2014 - 1:40pm

The Bundy family and their supporters fly the American flag as their cattle were released by the Bureau of Land Management back onto public land outside of Bunkerville, Nev., on Saturday. (AP Photo/Las Vegas Review-Journal, Jason Bean)

A former Arizona sheriff, Richard Mack, claimed that supporters of Nevada rancher Cliven Bundy were planning to place women on the front lines in case federal officers opened fire. Mack, who is an organizer, told Fox News: “We were actually strategizing to put all the women up at the front.” According to reports, Mack identifies with the Tea Party movement and is said to have organized and spoken at rallies. “If they are going to start shooting, it’s going to be women that are going to be televised all across the world getting shot by these rogue federal officers,” he said. Mack said that he traveled to Nevada in solidarity with Bundy amid a dispute with the Bureau of Land Management, which seized took a portion of his cattle in Nevada/Jack Phillips, Epoch Times. More here.

Question: What do you make of Mack's claim?

Balukoff: Lanza Ouster 'Cronyism'

April 15, 2014 - 1:24pm

Mike Lanza’s ouster from the state’s education task force effort is a sign of a broken, closed political process, Democratic gubernatorial candidate A.J. Balukoff said Tuesday. “That’s a sign of a broken, one-party system, of endemic cronyism—and it’s got to end,” Balukoff said in a campaign fundraising email. Lanza, pictured, a driving force behind the repeal of state superintendent Tom Luna’s 2011 education laws, was one of 31 members of Otter’s education task force. The group completed its work last summer, but new groups have been assembled to build on the task force’s recommendations. Lanza was pulled from one of these followup groups, weeks after joining Balukoff’s campaign as education adviser and spokesman/Kevin Richert, IdahoED NEWS. More here.

Question: Do you think Idaho politics has a bad case of 'endemic cronyism?

Litehouse Buys Coldwater Building

April 15, 2014 - 1:08pm

Litehouse Foods announced plans Monday to purchase a portion of the Coldwater Creek headquarters campus. According to Jim Frank, Litehouse president and CEO, the company has plans to purchase the administration building, one of four buildings spread across the 20-acre site. With 35,000 square feet of office space spread across two floors, the acquisition will provide a major boost to Litehouse's administrative structure, which is currently crammed into its production facility. Meanwhile, manufacturing and distribution will remain at its Ella Avenue location. "I think a new era (for Litehouse Foods) is really what we're looking at here," Frank said/Cameron Rasmusson, Bonner County Daily Bee. More here.


Trustees Don't 'Add The Words' Yet

April 15, 2014 - 1:01pm

They didn't "add the words," but Coeur d'Alene school board members are going to keep talking about them. Trustees heard, during Monday's school board meeting, from about 21 citizens who were nearly evenly split on whether the school district's anti-discrimination policies should be updated to add language that bans discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity. More than 100 people attended the meeting at the district's Midtown Center. The nearly three hours of public testimony followed a presentation by Marc Lyons, the school board's attorney, who reviewed the existing local, state and federal civil rights laws that prohibit discrimination. "These civil rights laws, the federal laws, apply to the Coeur d'Alene School District, and I know that people are concerned that it doesn't go far enough, but that's for the board to decide," Lyons said/Maureen Dolan, Coeur d'Alene Press. More here.

Question: Do you think the Coeur d'Alene School Board will eventually decide to "Add the Words"?

Kansas Killing Suspect Has INW Ties

April 15, 2014 - 12:40pm

The man accused of going on a hate-crime killing rampage targeting two Jewish facilities over the weekend in Kansas has Inland Northwest ties and served as a key prosecution witness in a 1988 federal case against the now-deceased Aryan Nations leader Richard G. Butler and 13 other white supremacists. Following the acquittals of Butler and the others, Frazier Glenn Miller Jr. has spent the past 26 years trying to convince other racists that he is a true “white nationalist” who genuinely hates Jews and minorities, not a government informant. Investigators are expected to examine whether Miller, who also goes by the name Frazier Glenn Cross, had come to believe he had to move from simply engaging in hate speech activities to carrying out an actual hate crime to win back support in white supremacy circles/Bill Morlin, special for SR. More here.

Question: Is this another example that hate speech can trigger action?

5 Voters Ask Jeff Ward Not To Run

April 15, 2014 - 12:20pm

Five voters from Idaho legislative District 3 sent a letter to Republican state House candidate Jeff Ward to discourage him from continuing his campaign. "It appears that you have serious personal and business financial problems owing the state of Idaho taxes in the estimated amount of $6,664.13 to date," according to the letter from Lorri Erickson, her husband John, and three others. "Continued failure to manage personal and business affairs is a great concern for a legislative candidate and fails to gain the public trust," the letter said. "If you personally cannot follow the laws in Idaho, how could the voter trust you in an important role as legislator?" The letter points to two outstanding personal income tax liens and four related to a political firm called The Strategery Group Inc/David Cole, Coeur d'Alene Press. More here.

Question: Is this a serious enough issue to preclude a candidate from running?

KCSD Seeks Violent-Assault Suspect

April 15, 2014 - 11:25am

The Kootenai County Sheriff’s Office is seeking assistance from anyone that may know the whereabouts of Terry Andrew Clark, 25, of Coeur d'Alene. Early Saturday morning, Clark was attending a large outdoor party in the area of Old Highway 95 and Brunner Road, south of Athol. During the party, Clark became violent with other party goers. When deputies responded to the location, most of the attendees had left the area, including Clark, whom reportedly fled the area on foot. Witnesses and the victims reported that Clark began hitting people with a handgun; four victims were taken to Kootenai Health for treatment, including surgery. All the victims had significant facial injuries that were consistent with the allegations that they were assaulted with an impact type weapon/Kootenai County Sheriff's Department. More here.

Blood Moon

April 15, 2014 - 11:15am

Joe Heller/Hellertoons

Wild Card/Tuesday -- 4.15.14

April 14, 2014 - 11:13pm

We're going to start off Tax Day in an odd way today. I'm going to be offline until noon. The techs will be here from 8 a.m. until noon to move our computers and other electronics gadgets downstairs to our new hangout on the first floor of the Spokesman-Review building on Northwest Boulevard. The furniture will follow. For the first time in 20 years, the Coeur d'Alene office of the SR will be operating from somewhere other than the second floor. It will be weird. But our new digs are better than the old ones. So, I'll see you back here at noon. Here's a Wild Card to toy with until I launch the day's postings ...

Parting Shot -- 4.14.14

April 14, 2014 - 5:00pm

On her Slight Detour blog, Marianne Love posts: "Sun peeking through old barn wood:  twas a nice sight along my morning walk as I passed by the old Lockwood place with camera in hand." More here.

Wild Card/Monday -- 4.14.14

April 14, 2014 - 4:53pm

I'm bailing on you early today because I want to move as much stuff down into my new office as I can this afternoon before the techs arrive to move the computers, etc., Tuesday morning. Huckleberries Online will be offline from 8 a.m. until noon Tuesday, as a result of the move. So I'll see you back here then. Meanwhile, behave yourselves and enjoy the nice sunshine outside ...

Alexie Book Target Of Fundraiser

April 14, 2014 - 4:49pm

On the Inlander blog Bloglander, Lisa Waananen reports how two women took action when the Meridian School Board voted 2-1 to remove Sherman Alexie's "The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian" from school curriculum: "After reading about this, Jennifer Lott of Spokane and her friend Sara Baker — who’s also from Spokane but now lives in Seattle — decided to do something about it. They came up with a plan to buy 350 copies of The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian — one for each student who signed the petition. They reached out to a Meridian School District teacher, who will help coordinate distribution of the donated books for World Book Night on April 23. Lott, who has a background in public libraries and issues like Banned Books Week, says she and Baker are pro-education and support the free exchange of ideas. More here.

Question: What do you think of the response by Jennifer Lott and Sara Baker to the Meridian School Board's move against Sherman Alexie's book?

PM Scanner Traffic -- 4.14.14

April 14, 2014 - 4:36pm
  • 3:45 p.m. Coeur d'Alene Police Department activities report for April 13-14 here.
  • 3:41 p.m. Drunk male in black sweat shirt w/green Army duffel bag is hitting street sign @ H95/Prairie.
  • 3:31 p.m. Physical domestic argument reported @ 8500 block of Nebraska Street/Rathdrum.
  • 3:15 p.m. Caller reports driver of older blue Chevy pickup tailgating @ s/b H41/I-90, Post Falls.
  • 3:14 p.m. Someone @ St. Vinny's reporting possible battery @ 201 Harrison Ave/CdA.
  • 3:12 p.m. Disabled, black Chevy pickup, w/flashers on, parked partly into traffic @ w/b I-90/H41 offramp.
  • 2:56 p.m. Post Falls woman reports 70YO mother who lives in vehicle hasn't been taking diabetics medicine.
  • 2:07 p.m. Assisted living resident accidentally calls 911 trying to contact health food store.
  • 1:43 p.m. Black Honda towing canoe bypassed boat inspection place @ w/b I-90/MP 28 (4th of July Pass area).
  • 1:30 p.m. Two people hitting each other in white SUV w/cracked window @ n/b Govt Way/Whoming, Hayden.
  • 1:12 p.m. Shoshone County seeks white 2013 Chevy Malibu, stolen from Smelterville Friday.
  • 1:02 p.m. Someone is having trouble breathing @ 700 block of Compton Street/Post Falls.
  • AM Scanner Traffic

PM Headlines -- 4.14.14

April 14, 2014 - 4:23pm

Winton Elementary fifth-grader Tianna Wood works on the practice Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium test at the Coeur d’Alene school last month as Idaho students got a look at the state assessments intended to align with Common Core standards. Story here. (SR photo: Kathy Plonka)

Cutline Contest -- 4.14.14

April 14, 2014 - 4:13pm

Time 2 Vote ...

A woman takes a group photo of the Republican candidates who attended a GOP rival event to the North Idaho Political Action Committee lunch Saturday. In the background, U.S. Sen. Jim Risch, R-Idaho, gets a laugh from the group as a result of something he said to Congressman Raul Labrador. You write the cutline. (Photo: Duane Rasmussen)

Weekend Winner -- Eddie Torreal, with 10 likes: Three girls from Lake City High congratulate each other on another successful session at the local tanning salon. You can see Weekend photo and all the Cutline Contest entries here.

Green Tea & The New York Times

April 14, 2014 - 3:18pm

Kathy Cooney Dodds of Writing North Idaho blog tells of a pleasant break at a local Starbucks, drinking green tea and reading her two favorite sections of the New York Times: "Statistics show print media is struggling , subscriptions and readership are down.  Many reasons are cited , not the least being the immergence of the internet.  But yesterday while browsing the paper,  I thought how newspapers  once provided fertile ground for  young writers to hone their skill. Learning to work with an editor, rewriting and editing a story, and the pressure to  meet a copy deadline.  I thought of my own long ago days when I was one of those young writers just out of college , and was hired to write feature  stories for a community newspaper in Southern California. The editor  stressed what my journalism instructors did about writing a news story, the importance of five W's and H - Who, What, Where , When, Why and How. More here. (Photo: Writing North Idaho)

Question: Did you ever consider a career in journalism?