I hope you may have had recent opportunity to attend Senator Crapo’s Town Hall meetings held around the Magic Valley. I have seen the Senator on many occasions and have found that he is easy and very willing to talk. Unfortunately though he has not been very forthcoming in following his self-proclaimed affinity toward Tea Party ideals. I last spoke to the Senator at the Custer County Republican Lincoln Day event earlier this spring in Challis held at Living Waters Ranch. I was fortunate enough to be seated next to him where we engaged in quite a lengthy discussion about economic opportunity in the rural outback of Idaho. I implored him to intervene on the citizens’ behalf in Custer County to stop the White Cloud Wilderness as we in Custer County have suffered enough Wilderness expansion, roadless area designation and severe forest fires while simultaneously losing our rightful heritage to use federal lands for economic benefit. Custer County the size of Connecticut has only 3 percent of its land available for taxation making very difficult to fulfill the obligations of county government. I believe Senator Crapo left the Lincoln Day event enlightened by many of similar persuasion. We were all disappointed however when the Senator joined Idaho’s other three federal officers to vote the White Cloud Wilderness into existence offering nothing but the hope that tourism will fill our empty coffers.
I again had opportunity to ask a few questions to Senator Crapo on his swing through Rupert last Monday. Below a synopsis of what transpired.
I attended Senator Crapo’s Town Hall meeting last Monday in Rupert at the historic Wilson Theatre to see what he might have to say for himself, a day when the stock market simultaneously rumbled beneath our feet. His spiel lined up directly with the tumultuous news of the day in a PowerPoint presentation he directed showing how government spending and the impending doom of financial collapse could occur if we didn’t get our financial house in order. He summed up that he believed the greatest danger facing America was our insatiable appetite for expensive, unproductive government programs. Duh… I was thinking. His lecture of government gone afoul seemed as if it might have been written by a freshman Senator with as yet little skin in the game. However, Senator Crapo rambled on as if it the bad news had nothing to do with him, it was those damn Democrats whose control of the House and Senate set this course for ice bergs dead ahead at full speed.
Although Senator Crapo extols Tea Party virtues at each of the meetings I’ve had a chance to attend he seems to have forgotten that personal responsibility is high on the prerequisite list of any self-respecting devotee. Senator Crapo is no spring chicken in this potpourri of political pea soup. He was sent to Congress in 1992 and then elected Senator taking office in 1999. Back then our troubles seemed so far away, today, they are here to stay; no thanks to the self-described outspoken leadership of our current senior Senator. Crapo who I muttered beneath my lips? His lackluster career seems to match his varnished tempered style. Maybe that’s our fault, we like nice guys in Idaho, we don’t shout much and think of others first but my goodness sake don’t you think it’s about time to get hopping mad? I twisted in my seat thinking of opportunities lost, opportunities to hand out some red meat to the hungry crowd of exasperated constituents. But not even a shot fired in anger, a filibuster to brag about, a bill sponsored to push the juggernaut of dysfunction backward.
I’m sorry Senator Crapo, the self-confessed deterioration of Constitutional balance of power has happened on your watch. I don’t recall your shouts of liberty for the individual on any of the mass media outlets let alone the local news. The proliferation of bankster capitalism, the loss of privacy rights, the escalation of undeclared foreign wars, the mountain of debt, the power of centralized government, the intrusion of mandatory federal health care, an all-out attack on parental rights and the indoctrination of our children to color their futures with an opaque pallet of federal education standards, our burning forests, the loss of economic opportunity and the host of ludicrous and scientifically inept regulation have all happened while you watched patiently from your alabaster Senate seat. We in Idaho are no longer so patient for results.
I know that the good Senator would protest my aggravation and deflect these issues to the account of those dastardly Democrats, but please, a Republican majority was seated in the House in 2010 and Republicans regained a majority in the Senate in 2014. I haven’t heard the thank you by way of repealing ObamaCare, closing the illegal immigration gap, smacking down the 70,000 page IRS code or taking out any federal regulation or over-bloated federal program. Blah, blah, blah, blah, blah………. I’m disgusted.
The Senator’s take on the Syrian “refugee” issue in Twin Falls came to question? Crapo reported not so much of an opinion on the unsettling consequences other than he didn’t fully support current legislation from the House that would end the refugee program now. His remark was that we need to keep the refugee program intact because for some it is the only safe way out of a war zone. He confided that many Iraqi informants who were not entitled to refugee status were murdered by the insurgents once America left Iraq. What! Who in the hell would want to be an American ally after that sad tale, and why do we keep losing wars so that we necessarily need to bring home our defeated comrades? My eyes rolled up in my head with visions of horror for those poor souls slaughtered at the hand of Isis driving around in our American made Humvees.
One Mini-Cassia Tea Party member cried out wondering what the Senator could do for us, the woebegone little people of little concern, because he reasoned no one would stand a chance running against such an overwhelming majority won in his last election. I didn’t catch much of a definitive reply. Maybe the question was more directed as a challenge. Is there not at least one among our million plus Idahoans who could answer the call? At least Senator Crapo will come to visit his constituents now and then and plans to stop for a chat at each of Idaho’s incorporated cities. Please go back to Washington and kick some butt even if it’s just Mitch McConnell’s poodle.