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|Thursday, 23 October, 2014|
Idaho Democratic Secretary of State Candidate Holli Woodings and her assistant. (Alexandria Alvarez photo)
By ALEXANDRIA ALVAREZ
FORT HALL - On Monday, October 13, Idaho Democratic Secretary of State Candidate Holli Woodings met with some Fort Hall Business Council members to explain her views.
Her opponent is Republican Lawerence Denney. Council members Blaine Edmo, Devon Boyer, and Lee Juan Tyler were present to meet Woodings. She was elected in 2012 to the Idaho State House of Representatives. She serves on the State Affairs Energy, Environment, Technology, Commerce, and Human Resource Committees. Woodings also served as president of Idaho’s oldest neighborhood association and helped pass the Yes! For Boise Schools levy. In 2013, she was one of Idaho Business Review’s Women of the Year.
So far, Woodings has traveled to Plummer to visit with the Coeur d’Alene Tribes in northern Idaho, and now with the Shoshone-Bannock Tribes with Fort Hall. She hopes to reach the other tribes before the election.
The meeting began with Lee Juan Tyler sharing some history of the Shoshone-Bannock Tribes. After Councilman and acting Chairman Blaine Edmo raised a few concerns that the Tribes had.
Edmo said, “When the reservation was created, it did not account for all the borders that would be created by county lines and this has created problems for Tribal members wishing to vote. Fort Hall is divided into four counties: Bingham, Bannock, Power, and Caribou. This has created a lot of political side plays and the counties have resented this issue. We also have had a problem with Bannock County and our voting precinct; there have been issues with manning a voting area for tribal members because safety concerns have been raised.”
Part of the responsibilities for a Secretary of State is the administration of election and regulation of lobbying and campaign finance; as a candidate, Woodings expressed that a person’s freedom to vote should not be infringed by anyone’s agenda at anytime. Voting is a fundamental freedom, and she hopes to ensure elections are easy, fair, and open.
“Maintaining people’s access to voting and the ballot are possible with no additional barriers. One of the things I get asked about a lot is Voter ID, which means that a person can present at least four different types of ID, or a signed affidavit to vote; my opponent wants this strengthened, which means more restrictions and barriers,” she said.
“When we have more of these, it means that less people will come out to vote, and I would like to do things to encourage more people to come out to vote. I also think it’s important for voters to be educated about what’s on your ballot as well,” said Woodings.
Janelle Decker asked Woodings if the problems felt in Fort Hall were much different than those that were expressed to her from Plummer and Woodings said the problems that Fort Hall was experiencing were indeed similar, and if she is elected to office, she hopes to find a remedy to the problems.
“There were a few things that have been expressed to you, such as the voting issue, and it is something that could have been easily taken care of, what we do as Tribes are important. We are a major land based tribe, and it’s important for us to protect what we have,” commented Boyer.
“What I would ultimately like to see on reservations is polling places that are staffed by tribal members, so that people feel comfortable and welcome,” concluded Woodings.
The Secretary of State is one of the constitutional officers of the U.S. State of Idaho. It is an elected position within the executive branch of the state government. The Secretary is responsible for the administration of elections and regulation of lobbying and campaign finance. The Secretary office registers business entities, files liens under the Uniform Commercial Code, and registers trademarks and service marks within the state.
Some of the other issues that Woodings feels strong about is: investing in education, growing the economy, and holding the Special Interests Accountable. For more information on who Holli Woodings is, and what she stands for, please visit www.woodingsforidaho.com.