[Vision2020] Lamar temporarily dons senator hat
thansen at moscow.com
Fri May 7 05:00:10 PDT 2021
Hmmm . . . Senator Tom Lamar? Sounds good to me.
Courtesy of today’s Moscow-Pullman Daily News.
Lamar temporarily dons senator hat
Latah County commissioner filled in for Sen. Nelson this week
Moscow City Councilor Walter Steed asked Latah County Commissioner Tom Lamar to do one thing while Lamar filled in this week for Sen. David Nelson: end one of the longest legislative sessions in Idaho history.
Lamar, a Moscow Democrat like Nelson, did his best.
Lamar voted for the Senate to adjourn “sine die,” or without a date for resumption. The motion failed, 27-7, on a party-line vote with all Democrats voting for the motion and all Republicans voting against it.
“He said, ‘There’s only one thing I want you to do in the Senate, Tom,’” Lamar said Steed told him while they had dinner Tuesday. “ ‘Just vote to shut the thing down and send everybody home.’ And he is a really strong Republican. I hear over and over again from both Republicans and Democrats, just end it. You’re not doing any good.”
Lamar said Nelson asked him to take his place this week because Nelson had a prior commitment. Gov. Brad Little officially appointed Lamar and he was sworn in Monday. Lamar said Nelson will resume his duties as senator next week.
Lamar said he drew heavily on his experience as an elected official and thought about the people in District 5, which is Latah and Benewah counties, as he did his work.
He served on the Moscow City Council with Steed, who now lives in Meridian, prior to being a county commissioner.
Lamar said he felt he made positive changes each day for the people he represented serving as a city councilor and county commissioner.
“It’s really different as a state senator,” Lamar said. “You’re kind of wading through all this stuff that seems a lot more political and perhaps less direct in terms of helping people.”
He said he debated several bills, including a property tax relief bill that passed both the House and the Senate. Lamar, who voted against the bill, said the bill does not provide the property tax relief people actually need.
“I liked the experience,” Lamar said. “I just wish we could have done more for the people of Idaho.”
Lamar said the session has gone on way too long and needs to end. Both the House and Senate are in recess until next week.
“I’ve seen a lot of weird legislative sessions and this one seems weirder than normal,” Lamar said.
He said the long session seems to be because of some legislators’ mistrust of Little. The House passed three pieces of legislation this week intended to curb the governor’s authority during declared emergencies.
“Some members seem to be wanting to drag this out as long as possible because they want to have an impact and the rest of us are like, ‘you know, it’s time to go home. We’re not doing any good here any longer,’” Lamar said.
Seeya 'round town, Moscow, because . . .
"Moscow Cares" (the most fun you can have with your pants on)
“A stranger is just a friend you haven’t met.”
- Roy E. Stolworthy
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