March 8, 2023
Ignorance or Apathy
By: Flint L. Christensen
Voting turnout in the primary in Bingham County is around 40%. Most do not know what a Precinct is, other than a geographical boundary. The Republican Central Committee is not functioning well as a method of representation for the people. Zoom meetings are restricted, and those who voice concerns are blocked both on social media and from attending the zoom meetings. In-person meetings are a thing of the past.
There exists an atmosphere within the Bingham County Republican leadership that is contrary to principles of honest representation. These efforts and their effects are evident in the increase of closed-door meetings, an increase in zoom meetings, and unofficial meetings in secret.
I was chastised for seeking a public office outside of the party organization. My process to seek a position in the party through the correct channels has shown me that there is corruption in the Bingham County leadership. The corruption I have observed is either malicious or due to incompetence.
I was nominated to fill a vacancy in my precinct back in May. That vote was delayed through pushing old business to the end of the meetings, with Precinct Reps leaving the meetings (which were often zoom meetings) in a coordinated attempt to prevent a quorum. This is a continuing trend, and a tactic that leaves little faith in the Bingham County Republican Central committee. Also, as soon as my nomination was made (and seconded), members of the Bingham County Central Committee began actively looking for somebody to fill the vacancy so they would not have to vote for me (a vote that finally happened only recently). Leadership has failed to abide by Bingham County bylaws, which require that uninvolved precinct representative positions be vacated. It is not a wonder that there is little interest in supporting the Republican party in Bingham County when this kind of behavior is the norm.
The Republican Central Committee met to discuss Coroner Jimmy Roberts’ arrest allegations PRIOR to his arrest. Members of the County Commissioners and Sheriff’s Department drafted a letter asking for his resignation with no evidence. I called them out on this, and their actions that are contrary to rule of law, and was blocked me on public platforms. After I publicly addressed their outrageous conduct behind the scenes, I then received a threatening phone call the next day which I believe was retaliatory and related to my willingness to take a stand.
“If a nation expects to be ignorant and free, in a state of civilization, it expects what never was and never will be. If we are to guard against ignorance and remain free, it is the responsibility of every American to be informed.” -Jefferson
Ignorance looms over our beloved Country and must be corrected. Who can we lean on to correct course? The individual in a state of ignorance? Unlikely. Those wielding the power of influence, i.e., teachers, news media, celebrities? No. It is time for everyone to step up and involve yourselves on every level of the political process. If you are upset at the state of our Country, it is because of the lack of interest on the local level that has gotten us where we are today.
I had a friend who was approached to serve as a precinct committeeman. After admitting that he did not know what he needed to do to serve in that capacity, he was informed that they would let him know when to show up for the meetings and whom he should support. My friend was well-intentioned in accepting the invite to serve as a committeeman, but was unaware that there already existed an active Precinct Representative. The person he was to replace was NOT who the establishment wanted. This is another classic example of how the selection of precinct representatives is used to strengthen a specific political agenda and is both a symptom and byproduct of those who seek to govern in the shadows.
My attendance with the Central Committee over this last year leaves me little faith in the representation in our County. I see those in power as either incompetent or maliciously corrupt. I’m not sure which it is, but their fruit is bitter either way. Representation is incredibly important to preserve the will of the governed. Our rights come from God; our government comes from the people. How can a person consent to be governed if the accountability is removed? If the choice of your representatives is manipulated to limit your options and silence your voice, where is your motivation to vote? Voter engagement should happen on the precinct level; however, Bingham County Central Committee is serving the establishment, and it is no wonder that voter turnout is so pathetic.
I implore you to involve yourself with the local precinct. Find out if they are actually attending meetings on your behalf (most are not). Find out if they are related to half the establishment! Find out if they support your values. Find out if they will even respond to you. If they do not, replace them!