Idaho representative preaches power to the people

Heather Scott (left) is currently serving her fourth term in the Idaho House of Representatives.
Heather Scott (left) is currently serving her fourth term in the Idaho House of Representatives. By: Heather Scott

As a representative to Idaho’s House of Representatives, Heather Scott has always striven to answer one question: How can I help others become more involved in government?

“I still believe all governing power is in the people and when exercised in positive and purposeful ways, it is still the most powerful tool to overcome any societal issue,” Scott said.

She published the non-partisan “101 Things You Can Do” to help people have more productive political conversations and to help people better engage with government. Some of the ideas she lists include:

— Pray for our country and state and our elected leaders daily

— Attend local meetings

— Apply to be a poll watcher or poll worker

— Let government officials and bureaucrats know when they are doing a good job

— Strengthen your local neighborhood by focusing on issues you agree on, not disagree

Scott considers the article one of the highlights of her time in the legislature.

“Citizens have all the power in government, they just don’t know they do,” Scott said. “They always want to fix things, but they don’t know how to fix it. I’m passionate about empowering citizens so they recognize their power and they exercise their power.”

Scott said she first got involved in politics by getting involved locally when she saw injustices happening in her community.

As she entered politics, she faced a learning curve.

“I think the biggest learning curve for me was realizing it’s O.K. to assert yourself as a woman and realize anything worth fighting for is likely going to be a fight so be prepared,” Scott said.

However, one person who always served as a role model was her mother.

“She’s just always so positive,” Scott said. “She hasn’t had the easiest life. She’s had a lot of bad things happen to her. She always says you you can’t control how other people treat you, you can only control your own actions and how you treat other people.”

Scott expressed gratitude for being able to live in a country where women constitutionally have all the same freedom and liberties regardless of sex. She offered six pieces of advice to women wanting to get involved in politics:

— Be true to your beliefs and base your decisions on facts, not feelings.

— Be honest with everyone.

— Understand the needs of your constituents.

— Stand your ground when the facts are on your side.

— Don’t assume and don’t judge. Go to the source, don’t rely on gossip.

— Don’t let others define you or put you in a box.

To learn more about Representative Scott, visit her website.