A movement that wants to see Eastern and Southern Oregon, as well as a small portion of Northern California absorbed to create a “Greater Idaho” is struggling to collect signatures during the pandemic. The president of the campaign Move Oregon’s Border for a Greater Idaho, Mike McCarter, has filed a federal lawsuit in the hopes of reducing the amount of signatures needed to get on the November ballot for certain counties.
Due to social distancing orders, the movement is struggling to obtain the required number of signatures in each county. McCarter filed the lawsuit in U.S. District Court and will be representing himself in oral arguments, which are scheduled to begin July 20. Judge Michael McShane will determine whether to reduce the number of signatures required for the petition due to the current circumstance, and if so, by how much. The initiative may have a chance, as Judge McShane already approved a similar reduction for the statewide “People Not Politicians” campaign, as well as delaying their signature deadline from July 2 to August 17.
A reduction in signatures would be the first step on a long road towards a Greater Idaho. The proposed border change would still require a yes vote in all counties, support from all three states, as well as approval from U.S. Congress.
By Emily Weninger