Trey Paul, FISM News
Eleven of Oregon’s 36 counties voted to secede from their state and join Idaho because of soft-on-crime policies and high taxes coming from the leftist Portland-dominated state government.
Several counties in Eastern Oregon began voting to secede back in 2019 as part of what’s now known as the “Greater Idaho Movement.”
Fast forward to January 10, the Greater Idaho bill was introduced by state Sen. Dennis Linthicum (R-Klamath Falls) with the same goal. Part of the bill reads: “We, the members of the 82nd Legislative Assembly stand ready to begin discussions regarding the potential to relocate the Oregon/Idaho border, and invite the Idaho Legislature, the Governor of Idaho, the Governor of Oregon to begin talks on this topic with this Legislative Assembly.”
Over in the House, a nonbinding petition known as House Joint Memorial 1 was sponsored by Reps. Judy Boyle (R-Midvale) and Barbara Ehardt (R-Idaho Falls).
“For quite a few years now, eastern Oregon has been quite unhappy with their state — Portland seems to run everything there — and they have been asking for quite some time if they could move the border and become part of Idaho,” Rep. Boyle told the House State Affairs Committee.
In January, the Oregon GOP posed this question on Twitter: Remember when you were proud to be an Oregonian? The tweet pointed to Georgia Attorney General Chris Carr who slammed Oregon for being easy on crime.
Remember when you were proud to be an Oregonian?#oregon #pnw #crime #safestreets #ORP #RNC #GOP #portlandoregon pic.twitter.com/aXJRPgStgV
— Oregon GOP (@Oregon_GOP) January 27, 2023
Supporters of the “Greater Idaho Movement” maintain lawmakers in Oregon have refused to protect people from criminals, rioters, and even the homeless, but infringed on their right to defend their family with firearms. They feel Idaho enforces the law.
“People in eastern Oregon have felt like their state-level governance has not heard them, has not paid attention to our concerns, and has not been working for eastern Oregon,” Greater Idaho Movement spokesperson Matt McCaw recently said on FOX.
Oregon business owner Sandie Gilson also spoke with FOX and shared her disdain for Oregon’s tax policy. She spoke about the burden she has taken on because of the corporate activity tax.
“I hate it,” Gilson said.
It is actually driving out businesses, especially here in rural Oregon. We’re losing pharmacies and other businesses like that. So every time a dollar comes into the business, over $1,000,000 in gross take, they are taxed on that before they pay their employees, before they pay for their cost of goods or anything,” she explained. “It is a tax on the gross income of businesses, and it is killing businesses, especially out here in eastern Oregon.
“They’re looking at Idaho fondly because of our strong economy, regulatory atmosphere and our values,” Republican governor Brad Little said. “There’s a lot that needs to happen before moving the border is within the realm of possibility.”
An urban-rural divide is nothing new, nor is the push to secede. Many voters in California, where the ultra-liberal metropolises of Los Angeles and the Bay Area dominate state government, would like to see the nation’s most-populated state split into multiple states, giving rural conservatives a say in their state government. Another large state, Illinois, is made up of 102 counties, 27 of which just passed a referendum to explore seceding from the state.
If Idaho and Oregon negotiated a border adjustment, which many consider a long shot, U.S. Congress would have to sign off on it.