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Idaho Republicans Thinking About Maybe Considering The Idea Of Forcing Out Their Convicted Rapist Colleague, Possibly
Remember that guy Mark Patterson, the freshman Idaho state representative who "forgot" that he had a 1974 rape conviction when he applied for a concealed weapon permit? And then when the county sheriff revoked his permit because of that little felony, Patterson accused the sheriff of being an anti-Second Amendment meanie fascist who was vendettaing a patriot? But then it turns out that all Idaho legislators automatically are allowed to carry concealed weapons, because Idahoforgodssake, and that's just the way it goes, so Patterson gets to keep the Precious?
So now there's more. Turns out that several other Republicans from Boise find Patterson kind of an embarrassment, and are trying to either persuade him to resign his seat, or, if necessary, to pass a resolution forcing him out. No telling whether he'll go quietly or dig in and fight. This being Idaho, that might involve literally holing up in a bunker. (It's true -- all Idahoans have bunkers.)
Just to review, Patterson pleaded guilty to "assault with intent to commit rape" when he was 21; he admitted to forcing a 46-year-old woman in Tampa, Florida, to have sex with him twice -- after threatening her with attack by a Doberman pinscher and telling her that he belonged to a biker gang that would come after her if she didn't have sex with him. He seems nice. Patterson has downplayed the conviction, claiming that he was young and foolish, that he never actually did anything wrong but was persuaded by his attorney to take a plea deal, that he doesn't remember the event because he got a hepatitis infection at the dentist, and for good measure, claiming that he really truly thought that the plea agreement meant the crime would be expunged from his record, so he never had to mention it ever again. You know, standard Party of Personal Responsibility stuff.
So now, State Sen. Fred Martin, who's also a precinct committeeman for the district Patterson represents, is calling on Patterson to resign from the Legislature. Martin plans to meet with other Republicans next week to discuss what steps to take if Patterson refuses to step down; he says that if needed, a resolution has been drafted demanding that Patterson resign. (Would that resolution actually have the power to force him out? Darned if we know!) Planning for a meeting of the precinct committee is still underway, and just to add that extra dollop of Idaho WTF, Martin noted that since Patterson has been so aggressive about the issue, they're planning to organize security for the meeting.
This could get interesting. We'll assume that Patterson probably won't succeed in appealing that denial of his concealed-carry permit -- even in Idaho, a felony rape conviction is kind of a big deal. Ah, but then, that "all legislators get guns" loophole would be the only thing allowing him to continue packing heat. So if his colleagues try to force him out of the Legislature, the big jerk might actually win some sympathy points by claiming that it's not about whether he's a convicted felon -- really, it's a nefarious attempt to strip him of his Second Amendment Manhood. And then it's off to the bunker.