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"We're in the ideas business"

Updated: Jul 21, 2023

The nation’s newest free-market think tank is now open following today’s launch of Mountain States Policy Center in Boise.

“The eyes of the policy world are on the Mountain States today,” Chairman Ken Dey said at the organization’s kick-off event on the steps of the Idaho state capitol. Former Idaho Governor Butch Otter and various state elected officials were in attendance for the launch event.

Mountain States Policy Center is a non-profit, non-partisan research center that will not endorse political parties or candidates but will provide free market solutions to successfully grow the region. It will concentrate its work in Idaho, Eastern Washington, Montana and Wyoming – one of the first organizations of its kind to cover multiple states.

“This is a policy party,” President & CEO Chris Cargill said. “Without ideas, politics can be a mess of various interests. But when you have ideas, that’s when good things happen.”

The organization’s mission is to empower individuals to succeed through quality research that promotes free enterprise, individual liberty and limited government.

The new MSPC has impressive momentum. It has already raised nearly $600,000 to fund its efforts and has tens of thousands of people engaging on its social media platforms.

Dey, of Boise-based J.R. Simplot Company, has been named the first chairman of the Mountain States Policy Center, while Cargill has been named President and CEO.

Fifteen other leaders from across the Mountain States will also join the board. A complete list is available at

Cargill said the organization has two initial goals: a listening tour across Idaho, as well as a number of studies, including 10 recommendations for lawmakers for the upcoming legislative session.


IDAHO CAPITAL SUN: New Mountain States Policy Center wants to have "adult debates"

CDA PRESS: Think big - Mountain States Policy Center launches in Coeur d'Alene

KBOI: Mountain States Policy Center launches

KHQ (NBC) 6: Nonprofit free market think tank will provide suggested solutions to help grow the region

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