Jim Risch

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Idaho Senator Jim Risch was among the Intelligence Committee members who questioned Attorney General Jeff Sessions Tuesday. Risch seemed to suggest the committee is wasting its time looking into allegations of collusion between the Trump Campaign and Russia.

AP

One member of the Senate Intelligence Committee who questioned former FBI Director James Comey Thursday morning was Idaho’s Jim Risch. Risch opened by complimenting Comey, but the Idaho senator quickly got down to business.

Risch jumped right into his questioning of former Director Comey. Noting his time was limited, Risch said, “I want to drill right down to the most recent dust-up regarding allegations that the President of the United States obstructed justice.”

Kyle Green / Idaho Statesman

Both of Idaho’s senators counseled President Donald Trump in his decision to leave the Paris Climate Accord. Senators Jim Risch and Mike Crapo both pushed for Trump to leave the international agreement.

Crapo and Risch were among 22 senators who wrote a letter to the Trump Administration ahead of yesterday’s decision urging the President to step away from the accord, which was ratified by 195 countries.

U.S. Capitol, Washington, DC
VPickering / Flickr Creative Commons

The response to the President’s budget among Idaho’s political delegation in Washington, D.C. is tepid. The Trump Administration proposes cutting spending by $3.6 trillion over the next decade.

In a statement, GOP Senator Jim Risch reminded people that Congress, not the President, actually appropriates funds. Risch characterized the proposed budget as a blueprint of the Trump Administration’s priorities.

Jamie Richmond

When news broke that President Trump revealed classified information to Russian officials visiting the White House last week, many in Washington expressed concern. Senator Jim Risch of Idaho, however, was one of the first to make public statements in defense of Trump. This afternoon, a small group of protesters, about 54 of them, gathered outside Risch’s Boise office in opposition.

Risch, a member of the Senate Intelligence and Foreign Relations committees, said Trump’s move to declassify state secrets was completely within his right as President, as he told PBS.

Screengrab / Senate Natural Resources Committee

Sunday night, Congress negotiated a budget bill to fund the government for the next six months. One provision not included was a reauthorization of the Secure Rural Schools Act, or SRS.

Friscocali / Flickr

Idaho’s legislative delegation in Washington, D.C. is weighing in on Thursday’s missile strikes against a Syrian airfield. The pinpoint military action used 59 cruise missiles to blast an airfield in Syria said to be the site where planes carrying chemical weapons were based.

Twitter: @SenatorRisch

Senator Jim Risch proposed a novel idea for protecting the nation's power grid from cyber threats. The senior member of the Senate Intelligence Committee thinks we should rely less on electronics and more on humans to manage the nation's electricity.

The Republican senator cited a 2015 cyber attack on Ukraine's power grid as evidence for his proposal. Power was cut to some 215,000 Ukranians in the incident, but the outage would've been even more widespread had humans not still been in physical control of some elements of the grid.

Karl Stanton / Flickr Creative Commons

With backlashes at townhall meetings held by congressional representatives across the country, Idaho’s own Congressional delegation isn’t setting any public meetings with constituents during the current recess.

There’s a missing persons campaign afoot for Idaho’s D.C. contingent.

Posters announcing a mock missing persons campaign for Idaho’s D.C. contingent are making the rounds on social media and on street lights in downtown Boise. The posters say: “Missing: Have You Seen This Man?” and feature pictures of Senator Mike Crapo or Senator Jim Risch.

screenshot / YouTube

After this week’s resignation of retired General Mike Flynn as President Trump’s National Security Adviser, Democrats on Capitol Hill called for an investigation.

J. Scott Applewhite / AP Images

Sen. Jim Risch (R-Idaho) has introduced a bill to give states more responsibility to manage conservation of the greater sage grouse. It comes as GOP control of Congress and the executive branch begin to shift western land management policy.

In 2015, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service decided not to list the sage grouse under the Endangered Species Act – instead approving strict land management plans that limit mining activities across 10 million acres.

J. Scott Applewhite / AP Images

President-elect Donald Trump’s pick to head the Interior Department was questioned by a senate committee Tuesday. Republican Rep. Ryan Zinke was pushed on several hot button land use issues -- issues he’s well acquainted with as a Montana congressman.

 

When it comes to questions about how he would manage the relationship between states and federal land managers, the greater sage grouse inevitably came up. The imperiled bird narrowly avoided landing on the Endangered Species List, but the debate over how to save the bird remains contentious.  

Idaho Ed News

Ten years ago today, Jim Risch was a governor in a hurry.

Appointed in May 2006, Risch was halfway through a seven-month term when he convinced the Legislature to sign off on one of his top priorities.

Risch’s bill to slash property taxes for public schools by $260 million passed on Aug. 25, 2006, at the end of a one-day special legislative session.

J. Scott Applewhite / AP

In August 2006, then-Gov. Jim Risch promised Idahoans $260 million in property tax relief.

He did deliver a tax cut to property owners.

But he did not deliver Idahoans an overall tax cut, according to an in-depth Idaho Education News analysis.

Instead, in 2015-16, Idahoans paid an additional $21.7 million for K-12 than they would have paid under the old tax structure — mostly because they now pay a higher sales tax. 

Idaho Ed News

It didn’t take long for former Gov. Jim Risch to remind me how I was earning a paycheck 10 years ago.

In August 2006, Risch was midway through a seven-month stint as governor, and brokering a deal to slash Idaho property taxes.

I was editorial page editor at the Idaho Statesman at the time — and our editorial board came out against his plan to eliminate $260 million in public school property tax levies, and use a $210 million sales tax increase to make up most of the difference.

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