Pick your Poison: Bieter or McLean


The words that seem to permeate the vocabulary of Lauren McLean are sustainability, social justice, environment, climate, anti-discrimination, conservation, diversity, and inclusion. My friends, these are the same words that are prominent in comments made by the more radical factions of the current democratic elected officials in congress. Some will say she could not be like an AOC or Rashida Tlaib but then she has not yet been elected. Maybe she doesn’t speak the same words but here are some of the things she has been quoted as saying:

“I believe that cities and counties are a huge part of the solution for sustainability, justice and the environment, globalization.”

“Sustainability and the economy are intertwined,”

“Boise is poised to be a leader around sustainability and climate.”

“We’re faced with the changing nature of work and the economy, globalization, climate change,”

“Courage is commitment to ideals that guide one’s action with focus, regardless of pressure,” Remember this one the first time she does something that is unpopular with the electorate and she does not care what you think as her ideals will guide her actions.

An example of her courage was supposedly when General Mattis stunned a U.S. Senate panel when he asserted that climate change is real and a significant threat to American interests abroad. Mclean piped up with this statement. “We’re faced with the changing nature of work and the economy, globalization, and climate change,”

Mclean owns and manages The Confluence Group, which helps donor alliances, philanthropists, and foundations to increase the impact of philanthropy and also works on the Idaho Progressive Investors Network. She led a Shareholder resolution requiring Idaho Power to adopt carbon reduction guidelines. Has anyone noticed that their electric bills have been on the increase for the past decade?

While Bieter has received contributions from a host of conservatives like David Leroy, Tommy Ahlquist and a top republican donor Harvey Neef in 2015 most of his campaign money came from individuals and leftist organizations. By the same token, McLean had fewer donors as she ran unopposed so it is hard to make a judgement on where the bulk of her money came from but it is noteworthy that she received a donation from Presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg which demonstrates her largely progressive tilt. We would not be surprised if Bieter is liked more by the crony republicans in Boise than his own party.

The Idaho Press revealed a pair of emails McLean wrote that were later forwarded to Hilary Clinton campaign chair John Podesta. Those emails and thousands of others were hacked by the Russian government and provided to Wikileaks, which released them in an attempt to derail the campaign of Hillary Clinton.

Someone highlighted the emails for the Idaho Press “alleging McLean is part of a ‘dark money’ political fundraising effort to shield progressive donors from campaign finance laws that would require them to disclose their identities.”

McLean pushed back on the dark money idea and told the Idaho Press: “These people are members of the investor network, but because this information relates to their financial decisions, they ask for privacy.” She said that like a law firm a small business rarely shares their client list. We beg to differ and think the public has a right to know who these people and organizations are that support her and how much they have contributed.

Mclean was chosen by the Seattle-based Grist.org as one of the country’s most inspiring innovators and doers working on fresh solutions to the planet’s biggest problems. While both Bieter and McLean are in sync with the Democratic Party, McLean is decidedly farther to the left of Bieter. Consider that as Boise prepared to add its own words after failing in the Idaho legislature McLean said this ‘It’s very important we treat everyone with dignity and respect, no matter who they love.’

While she has helped to provide permanent housing for some of the city’s homeless population she has also cosponsored a Welcome City program with the highest per capita percentage of refugee residents including those from Iraq, Somalia, Bhutan, Burma, Democratic Republic of Congo and even some Syrians. She encourages Boise businesses to embrace diversity and create opportunities for the city’s new residents. To quote her “It is important to talk about diversity and development as we figure out ways to integrate women, refugees, and immigrants to really build a diverse workforce here,”

It only took us a couple of hours of research to pull together these little tidbits about Mrs. McLean from google sites can you imagine what we could learn if we did a comprehensive investigation of her history. Voters need to know more about their candidates other than what they say in public and you can bet that you would not find this type of information on the front page of the Statesman. Where is Betsy Russell when we need her?

Like we have said, there is the “Devil you Know” (Bieter) and the Devil you don’t Know (McLean). Pick your poison.

“We Get the Government We Deserve”

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