Washington, DC -- The gem state was in the conversation of national politics again Sunday, as Rep. Raul Labrador (R-Idaho) was a guest on NBC's Meet the Press.
The main topic on the show, and for the roundtable which Labrador took part in: the sequester.
Labrador told the panel Washington does need to cut spending. He believes that even though the sequester wasn't ideal, that the 2 cents on every dollar it cuts is small compared to the cuts U.S. families have already made, and cuts that need to be made in government. Most folks in Idaho are saying that we did the right thing, he said.
NBC's Chuck Todd wondered if, in fact, politicians on the right secretly wanted the sequester to get cuts in social programs, and those on the left secretly wanted the sequester to get cuts in defense.
I think it was a silent majority, clearly in the House and Senate, that didn't mind seeing these go through, said Todd. Because if they did, they would've made a real effort to stop it.
But the congressman, not surprisingly, put the blame on the president for any sequester-ending deal failing. President Obama wants higher taxes on the wealthy, and the GOP won't budge on that any more.
The president doesn't want a deal, said Labrador. The president wants a political victory. He wants a political victory on taxes. He wants a political victory on spending.
And many on the roundtable agreed that this apparent impasse will keep the arbitrary spending cuts of the sequester in place for months.
Look, the Republicans cannot give on taxes. They simply can't. It would damage their brand permanently, said Kathleen Parker, columnist for the Washington Post. There's no way to have a meeting of the minds when those differences exist, and that's not going to change. The sequester is going to continue through the fiscal year.
There's a whole lot of politics in this, as there is in everything else, said Tom Brokaw, now an NBC News Special Correspondent. There are two villages clashing with each other who seem to occupy a separate universe.
The discussion also turned to the constitutionality of the Voting Rights Act, which the Supreme Court heard oral arguments on last week. Labrador says it should be examined, and also invited more minorities to move to Idaho, a state which he says is about 90% white, but willing to elect a minority to Congress.
Labrador also weighed in on journalist's Bob Woodward claim that the White House threatened him. Labrador says he's glad someone is talking about the way this president is acting, but Tom Brokaw says it's a non-story.