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Support those who've proved their mettle

| October 31, 2021 1:00 AM

Tuesday is Election Day. Sadly, it’s become a partisan Election Day, one which pits ideology against proven competence.

Even though our state’s founders decreed that these local elections would be nonpartisan, the leaders of a small but potent group have decided those founders were wrong. The problem is that this small group has hijacked the good name of the Republican Party, so when they say “These are good Republicans and you should vote for them,” real, true Republicans should be exceedingly wary.

This group, the Kootenai County Republican Central Committee, does deserve credit. They outwork everyone else on the local political spectrum. They’re dedicated to their mission, which is an extremism that doesn’t fit North Idaho or its longer term residents. They’re organized and mobilized to do everything they can to convince the 7 out of 10 local voters who lean Republican to cast ballots for the KCRCC’s endorsed candidates.

That formula has been working for them. It very well might again Tuesday, unless more traditional Republicans, independents and Democrats band together to keep extremism from destroying what’s left of our inclusive community.

As you prepare to vote, this newspaper’s editorial board has on this page presented its recommendations for key elective offices. These endorsements were not made lightly, nor were they made in a vacuum. Each of these people has something in common.

Think about why you moved here, or why you’ve lived here as long as you have. Are these some of the reasons?

• Our community is safe.

• Our community is clean.

• Our infrastructure is adequate.

• Our parks are pristine.

• Our libraries are fortresses of great knowledge.

• Our schools are strong.

• Our people are welcoming.

Each of the individuals endorsed by this newspaper and several other organizations, including groups of physicians and teachers, business and religious leaders, law enforcers and fire fighters, has in his or her way contributed significantly to what’s good about your city and life in Kootenai County today. We’re confident that their No. 1 priority is maintaining and even improving on the list above. We cannot say that for those who oppose them.

Do not be fooled when, on Tuesday, you’re greeted outside your polling place and handed a star-spangled cheat sheet on the conservatives who deserve your vote. Even though Halloween will be over, you're being handed a rotten trick, not a leftover treat.

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