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The Idaho Legislature has (finally) adjourned. Here’s our 12th annual BILE and FLUB awards.


The Idaho Legislature has (finally) adjourned. Here’s our 12th annual BILE and FLUB awards.

Apr 17, 2024 | 6:00 am ET
By Jerry and Carrie Scheid
The Idaho Legislature has (finally) adjourned. Here’s our 12th annual BILE and FLUB awards.
Idaho Gov. Brad Little gives his State of the State speech in the House chambers of the State Capitol building on Jan. 8, 2024. (Otto Kitsinger for Idaho Capital Sun)

Carrie: Now that the Idaho Legislature has finally adjourned, it’s time to announce our 12th annual B.I.L.E. and F.L.U.B. awards.

Jerry: B.I.L.E. stands for “bad Idaho legislative efforts,” (for really bad bills!) and F.L.U.B. stands for “foolish legislator utterances or blunders.” As usual, we have an embarrassment of riches for both.

Carrie: In the Insanity Vanity License Plate category, the B.I.L.E. goes to Sen. Tammy Nichols, R-Middleton, and Rep. Judy Boyle, R-Midvale, for the Gadsden Don’t Tread On Me license plate.

Jerry: I’m not surprised the far right wants a snake on their vehicle as their emblem.

What bills passed; what didn’t? 2024 Idaho legislative session adjourns for the year 

Carrie: Isn’t it revealing that the far right is against government funding unless it’s to pay for their own anti-government message?

Jerry: In the Culture Wars category, the B.I.L.E. goes to Republican Sen. Ben Toews and Rep. Joe Alfieri of Coeur d’Alene for their Traditional Family Values Month Resolution.

Carrie: They wanted to designate the month between Mother’s and Father’s Day for celebrating the importance of traditional families.

Jerry: So, single parents, bachelors, widows, widowers, step-parents, unmarried partners, LGBTQ+ people, etc., aren’t invited?

Carrie: In the Onward Christian Soldier category, the B.I.L.E. goes to Rep. Sage Dixon, R-Ponderay, for his Religious Security Teams Immunity bill. This would have given immunity to armed volunteer security people guarding churches.

Jerry: Sounds like “thoughts and prayers” aren’t good enough for church security?

Carrie: And since the Legislature won’t pass a bill permitting militias to march in parades, at least this would have allowed them to march around their local church.

Jerry: And now for my favorite, the Best in Show B.I.L.E. goes to Rep. Heather Scott, R-Blanchard, for her cannibalism bill. While cannibalism is already illegal in Idaho, this bill would have also made it illegal to serve flesh or blood to another human being without their consent.

Carrie: During the House debate, Rep. Ilana Rubel, D-Boise, suggested the likelihood of that happening was rare, or at least medium rare.

Jerry: Calls to mind the famous cookbook “To Serve Man: A Cookbook for People.”

Carrie: It’s time to move on to our F.L.U.B. winners. In the Returning Idaho to the Wild West category, the F.L.U.B. goes to Rep. Ed Hill, R-Eagle, for telling the Legislature, “You have to answer violence with violence.”

Jerry: That was his rationale for a bill allowing K-12 teachers to conceal carry weapons on school grounds. Seems kind of an odd argument from a member of the law and order party?

Carrie: In the What the Heck is She Saying? category, the F.L.U.B. goes to Rep. Barb Ehardt, R-Idaho Falls, for telling the House of Representatives: “There are definitely rights, with rights, come responsibility. This is why we don’t allow children to have rights, honestly. And it’s something we must distinguish.”

Jerry: But isn’t she a big supporter of rights for the unborn child?

Carrie: Yes. Right to Life of Idaho said they gave her its annual Pro-life Warrior award because “she has been especially vocal in protecting the rights of the unborn child.”

Jerry: But once you’re born, you’re toast?

Carrie: Yup! Last, but not least, the Best in Show F.L.U.B. goes to Sen. Dan Foreman, R-Moscow. During the debate over whether the Senate should condemn the recent racist incident against the University of Utah women’s basketball team, he announced he would fully support the resolution but would not apologize.

Jerry: He said, “I just felt compelled to stress that point that we as a state have nothing to apologize for to anyone.”

Carrie: Except maybe we should, as a state, apologize for re-electing Sen. Dan Foreman?

Jerry: Our legislator F.L.U.B.s brings to mind what Mark Twain once said, “It is better to keep your mouth closed and let people think you are a fool than to open it and remove all doubt.”