Rural counties in Oregon vote to join Idaho

Several counties in rural Oregon voted to move the state’s border and join Idaho.

According to Oregon Live:

The grassroots group Move Oregon’s Border for a Greater Idaho wants to flip Oregon’s mostly rural eastern and southern counties — plus a few northern counties in California — into Idaho, believing they’d be better off in Idaho’s more conservative political environment. It’s hoping that political pressure from county initiative votes will lead to negotiations between Oregon and Idaho to move the border between the two states, putting up to 22 of Oregon’s 36 counties in Idaho.

“This election proves that rural Oregon wants out of Oregon,” lead petitioner Mike McCarter said in a statement. “If Oregon really believes in liberal values such as self-determination, the Legislature won’t hold our counties captive against our will. If we’re allowed to vote for which government officials we want, we should be allowed to vote for which government we want as well.”

Apparently, the signature drive to “to gain political refuge from blue states” has been going on for quite some time but COVID-19 hampered it and put it on lockdown; now, it has opened back up and gained momentum. Even Idaho’s governor supports the effort, which would give his ultra-red state more political clout.

However, moving these rural counties to Idaho faces several challenges. Both Oregon and Idaho’s state legislatures — and ultimately the U.S. Congress — would have to approve the move.

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