More Heather Scott Melodrama at Idaho Statehouse: Five GOP Legislators Ask to Be Removed From Committees 

click to enlarge Rep. Healther Scott (R-Blanchard) - IDAHO LEGISLATURE
  • Idaho Legislature
  • Rep. Healther Scott (R-Blanchard)
No one thought the brouhaha over the removal of Blanchard Republican Rep. Heather Scott from her committee assignments to subside anytime soon. But even Republican leadership was taken by surprise Monday morning when no fewer than five GOP House members stood and asked that they, too, be removed from their own committee assignments in solidarity with Scott.

Scott was stripped of her committee assignments by House Speaker Scott Bedke (R-Oakley) after Rep. Christy Perry (R-Nampa) complained to leadership that she had a growing concern over Scott's "paranoid and aggressive behavior." Perry's letter came in the wake of Scott reportedly saying in a December GOP meeting that female House members gained leadership positions if they "spread their legs."

"I'm deeply concerned about the integrity of this body," said Rep. Ron Nate (R-Rexburg), who asked to be removed from the Environment, Energy and Technology; Judiciary, Rules and Administration; and Revenue and Taxation committees.

Other lawmakers who requesting that they be removed from their committees until Scott was reinstated to her committee assignments included:
  • Rep. Priscilla Giddings (R-White Bird): Local Government, Resources and Conservation, and State Affairs committees
  • Rep. Karey Hanks (R- St. Anthony): Agricultural Affairs; Health and Welfare; and Judiciary, Rules and Administration committees
  • Rep. Dorothy Moon (R-Stanley): Commerce and Human Resources, Education and Environment, and Energy and Technology committees
  • Christy Zito (R-Hammett): Agricultural Affairs; Judiciary, Rules and Administration; and State Affairs committees

    GOP leaders met in a brief midday caucus Monday, but Speaker Bedke said the issue of the five legislators asking to removed from committee assignments if Scott's removal from committees wasn't overturned didn't come up as a topic of discussion during the caucus. Bedke told the Spokesman-Review's Betsy Russell, "We've got important business to conduct here," adding that he would be the one who would attend to any removal of GOP House members from any committees. Bedke also said that if lawmakers chose not to attend any committee hearings, it would be their prerogative.

    Meanwhile, House Minority Leader Mat Erpelding (D-Boise) said Monday morning's events on the floor of the House were not much more than theatrics.

    "Let's get down to business," Erpelding wrote in a statement. "Let's do the job Idahoan's sent us here to do. Let's stop playing around."

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