Oregon and Idaho officials met Thursday in Baker City to discuss the Greater Idaho Movement. One of those in attendance — and expressing a willingness to look at moving the state border — is Rep. Vikki Breese-Iverson of Prineville.
The meeting looked at the potential next steps in this movement, which seeks to add several Eastern and Central Oregon counties excluding Deschutes to Idaho.
Voters in several Oregon counties have voted in favor of at least looking into the possibility of the move.
“Over the last three years, the Greater Idaho movement has won in twelve of the twelve eastern Oregon counties that have voted on this issue. As a state representative, I have a duty and responsibility to have conversations that could potentially better my constituents,” Breese-Iverson said in a statement released by the Greater Idaho Movement. “It is clear: people in central and eastern Oregon do not align with all the values of those in Portland and Eugene. Is Greater Idaho the answer? I am not sure but I am willing to turn over all the rocks possible, for the land and people I love.”
Breese-Iverson’s fellow Republicans Rep. Judy Boyle of Washington County and Barbara Ehardt of Idaho Falls were also in attendance.
“The Idaho House has already stated that we are ready to have discussions with the Oregon Legislature on how to advance Freedom for eastern Oregonians,” Boyle said in a statement. “Indeed, in February, the Idaho House of Representatives passed a resolution stating as much.”
Constitutional law experts say such a move would require the approval of both state legislatures and Congress. Norman Williams, a professor of constitutional law at Willamette University, has estimated that the Idaho-Oregon border move cost somewhere in the range of $18 billion to $20 billion.
The movement disputes Williams’ numbers, claiming that the cost would be negotiated between the two states. It also says that “Oregon should want to cut their losses because they subsidize eastern Oregon.”
Breese-Iverson recently stepped down as Oregon House Republican Leader.