All Politics is Local

Lessons on interior decorating

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Kimberly Abell of Camas speaks to the Clark County Council on Tuesday in Vancouver about a motion to display “In God We Trust” in the public hearing room

There were some strange moments during last Tuesday’s county council meeting and the board time that followed on Wednesday, to say the least.

The proposal to post “In God We Trust” inside the public hearing chambers drew a massive crowd Tuesday, most of whom were critical of the proposal because it would be divisive and ostracize those who, well, don’t trust in God.

The following Wednesday, Councilor David Madore made it clear during board time that though that particular motion failed due to lack of a second, the issue is not over. I expect it will return to the floor sometime soon, but it’s not on this week’s consent agenda, so we all get a break on this one.

Boy, were there some gems in those two meetings, though. I mean, Madore did remind the crowd that law enforcement were on stand-by to make sure people were respectful at the meeting. It’s hard to compete with that. But there was a moment on Wednesday that stood out to me.

During board time, Madore told his fellow councilors exactly where, how and in what font he’d like to see “In God We Trust” hung in the chambers. In case you missed it, he wants it to be the same font as what’s on the penny, and brass in color. He made sure to clarify, however, that maybe his fellow councilors wouldn’t like that. Maybe they’d want to see it posted elsewhere.

Councilor Tom Mielke agreed.

“We might put it some place and say ‘that just doesn’t like right,’” Mielke said. “And that’ll be Jeanne (Stewart), because she’s a woman, and she likes to move things around.”

And yes, a few of you tweeted at me to ask if that was real. It is. I just double checked the recording on The Grid to make sure.

To Councilor Stewart’s credit, she kept it cool, laughing at Mielke’s joke despite the awkward sexism.

Remember, Stewart was the only one in both meetings to outright dismiss the proposal, so I don’t know if interior decorating is actually on her mind at the moment.

Kaitlin Gillespie

Kaitlin Gillespie

I'm the education reporter at The Columbian. Get in touch at kaitlin.gillespie@columbian.com or 360-735-4517.