Democrat Echohawk comes from era when Democrats had near parity with Republicans in Idaho State government-

Larry Echohawk, a member of the Pawnee tribe, has just become head of the troubled Bureau of Indian Affairs in the Department of Interior. Now teaching  at Brigham Young University, as a Democrat he was an Idaho State Senator, later state Attorney General, and lost in a bid to become Idaho’s governor to the then rising politcian, Dirk Kempthorne.

Until 1994, Democrats were doing fairly well in Idaho, except for the legislature when they haven’t controlled since the 1950s.

Utahn takes on massive job over Indian affairs. BYU professor takes on agency’s top post. By Thomas Burr. Salt Lake Tribune.

Although the Bureau doesn’t have a lot of direct conservation authority, because of its indirect influence over the Indian Reservations, it is good to have this agency filled by a conservationist.

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About The Author

Ralph Maughan

Dr. Ralph Maughan is professor emeritus of political science at Idaho State University with specialties in natural resource politics, public opinion, interest groups, political parties, voting and elections. Aside from academic publications, he is author or co-author of three hiking/backpacking guides, and he is President of the Western Watersheds Project.

4 Responses to Echohawk, ex-Idaho Attorney General is confirmed to head the Bureau of Indian Affairs,

  1. avatar Debra K says:

    Echohawk’s loss in 94 to Kempthorne was definitely a major waypoint in Idaho’s sharp turn to the right.

    Kinda like Bush v. Gore, sometimes you wonder what might have been had the progressive Democrat been in that office.

    Hopefully Echohawk can make a difference at BIA; will be interesting to see if he just gets bogged down in the Interior bureaucracy.

  2. avatar paulWTAMU says:

    I would rather stick my manly parts in a meat grinder than try to control BIA; best of luck to the man.

  3. avatar JimT says:

    Good choice, finally. Brother runs the NARF group here in Boulder; my wife has known both of them through the years and finds them good folk and committed environmentalists as well as advocates for Native American rights.

    As far as a meat grinder…I think BLM is THE federal meat grinder in the panoply of Federal environmental jobs.

    BTW, any thoughts here why Big Hat Ken’s appointments are coming so damn slowly?

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‎"At some point we must draw a line across the ground of our home and our being, drive a spear into the land and say to the bulldozers, earthmovers, government and corporations, “thus far and no further.” If we do not, we shall later feel, instead of pride, the regret of Thoreau, that good but overly-bookish man, who wrote, near the end of his life, “If I repent of anything it is likely to be my good behaviour."

~ Edward Abbey

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