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Just What Is A 'Constitutional Sheriff?'

Dr. Zoe Nemerever
Dr. Zoe Nemerever

It's become part of a process: when Oregon's governor announces restrictions to slow the spread of COVID-19, some county sheriff announces that he will not enforce mask mandates or other rules.

And it's usually several sheriffs, including recently in Douglas and Josephine Counties.

Never mind that mask mandates are not usually on the list of things a sheriff or deputies would enforce. It's about making a statement on power at different levels of government, part of what some people call the "constitutional sheriffs" movement.

Political scientist Zoe Nemerever at Texas Tech studies this and other limited-government philosophies.

Dr. Nemerever visits with an overview.

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The Jefferson Exchange is Jefferson Public Radio's daily talk show focused on news and interests across our region of Southern Oregon and Northern California. Angela Decker is the senior producer, Charlie Zimmermann is the assistant producer, and Geoffrey Riley hosts the show.