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Rural Idaho town a safe haven for Conservatives

SANDPOINT, Idaho (AP) — Linda Navarre moved to Sandpoint, Idaho, from Cleveland in 1978, when the town consisted of people in the timber industry and hippies “and they all got along.”

Now she barely recognizes the small resort community near the Canadian border that is quickly growing as people disenchanted with big city life move to Sandpoint, Idaho, many of whom are conservatives fed up with liberal politics in blue states.

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“The division gets wider and wider,” Navarre said, adding many of the new arrivals are changing the civility of the community. “My concern is there are so many people who are not nice.”

Sandpoint is a four-season resort town built along the shores of scenic Lake Pend Oreille. It had 7,300 residents in the 2010 Census, but grew 21% in the decade to about 8,900 in the 2020 Census. In addition to the natural beauty, “people come here because it’s a red state,” said longtime resident Gail Cameron, 67.

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To capitalize on that trend, a growing number of real estate companies are advertising themselves to people on the right, saying they can take them out of liberal bastions like Seattle and San Francisco and find them homes in places like rural Idaho.

Sandpoint-based Flee The City is a consortium of four businesses which specialize in selling property to conservatives in northern Idaho and western Montana. The company calls itself “a real estate firm for the vigilant.”

Flee the City has partnered with a company that provides “sustainable homes design with integrated ballistic and defensive capabilities.”

Todd Savage, whose Black Rifle Real Estate firm is part of Flee The City, said in a brief email exchange that his business is booming, thanks to “insane” left wing politics.

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One of the bigger players among right-leaning real estate companies is Conservative Move, based in a suburb of Dallas. Founder and chief executive Paul Chabot said blue states have only themselves to blame for driving out conservatives.

Rural Idaho town part of trend: Conservatives seeking space  The Associated Press – en Español


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