Chicken & Waffles, & John Boehner?
STRANGE OMEN #1
I should have know something was afoot in the universe when this happened just down the road from my house, begging the question, “Why?”
Just to be clear, I have never actually seen a chicken cross the road, nevermind in this visually perfect allegorical fashion. I have never even seen a chicken in my neighborhood at all, though clearly there is now photographic evidence that they exist.
About a quarter mile and a few hairpin mountain road turns away from the chicken sighting, is something relatively new to Alaska – a fancy gated community. It is called Prominence Pointe. <—— (Note the ‘e.’) Those who have been here longer than the gated community call it “Prominence Pointy” while making an elongated face like an English Butler.
STRANGE OMEN #2
Nothing much happens at the Pointy. The school bus stops there. And in the winter, they turn off the fountain at the gate. And in the spring, they turn it on. So, imagine my surprise to see 8 or 10 people standing on either side of the road by the closed gate, waving flags and signs. As I drive past, the facial recognition software in my brain begins to MEEP!
Holding a white sign, with a nicely drawn red, white, and blue rhinoceros on it, and the words, “RINO AGENDA,” was none other than The Waffle Lady.
Someone else carried a sign that said, “STOP CONSPIRING WITH OBAMA”
Regular readers of the Mudflats will remember when candidates for State House and Senate answered questions posed by the Tea Party last summer. In the “lightning round” contestants who did not answer questions (even the most ambiguous or politically nuanced) immediately, were Eggo-shamed. The Waffle Lady would trot over to a telephone message spike which sat in front of each candidate, and jam a waffle on the spike of the offender. The more waffles you accumulated, the more of a “waffler” you were. And nobody wants a politician who gives a thoughtful answer. It’s yes or no. Pondering? Heh heh heh. We don’t think so.
There might have been several things I expected to see on my drive down the hill, but The Waffle Lady protesting outside the gate of Prominence Pointy was not one of them. So, I turned around and took this crappy picture.
Then I turned around again, by the bank of mailboxes, and took this other crappy picture.
The universe was serving up chicken and waffles – a portent of something strange.
THE EVENT THAT WAS PORTENDED
It turns out, that a certain John Boehner is in town. Yes, that one. The Speaker of the House. The Great Orange One. Our Fearless Weeper. You remember him, right? He stopped being an ineffective jackass long enough to lash out against Alaska’s lone Republican congressman Don Young back in March, when Don Young referred to the migrant tomato pickers on his father’s farm as “wetbacks.”
“Congressman Young’s remarks were offensive and beneath the dignity of the office he holds,” Boehner had said. “I don’t care why he said it — there’s no excuse and it warrants an immediate apology.” Ouch.
So, while in Alaska, what better way for the GOP leadership to distance itself from asshats like Don Young who seem hell bent on sabotaging the party’s already feeble attempt at latino outreach, than for the Speaker to headline the fundraiser with… Congressman Don Young! Yes, he really did.
The fundraiser in Prominence Pointy, headlined by the buddy team of Young and Boehner,collected money for the Boehner for Speaker joint fundraising committee (which benefits his own campaign PAC), the National Republican Congressional Committee and the Ohio Republican Party.
Apparently, sucking the limited political dollars from Alaskans and sending them to well-funded out-of-state campaigns in exchange for a photo op is not a purely Democratic bit of idiocy.
The invitation to the shindig suggested a contribution of between $500 and $1,000, with donors of $2,500 or more getting to attend a special photo reception. The maximum donation is $52,600.
Also on the list of co-hosts are the two Dan Sullivans – the Mayor of Anchorage, and the Bush appointee turned Alaska Attorney General turned Head of Department of Natural Resources. The latter Mr. Sullivan has had an interesting career trajectory, which many acknowledge as leading to the quest for higher political office. He had been expected to throw his hat in the ring for the United States Senate seat currently occupied by Mark Begich (D). But so far, he has not.
Mayor Dan Sullivan was rumored to have an interest in the seat also, and actually polled competitively against Begich several months ago, but tindications are tha he has “no interest” in running.
Which brings us to the interesting topic of those who were not on the list of co-hosts.
The first to enter the race against Begich was former Republican nominee for the Senate in 2010, and Tea Party darling, Joe Miller. We all know how John Boehner feels about Tea Party types, so it’s not surprising that Miller would be about as welcome as a skunk (or a donkey) at this garden party.
But, the second to declare was current Lt. Governor and moderate Mead Treadwell, who has been spearheading Alaska’s efforts to get out from under the regulatory yoke of the Voting Rights Act. Yes, in this state you can still do that, and be a flaming social conservative, and still somehow be considered a moderate.
The absence of Miller and Treadwell begs the speculation that the candidate who’ll get the backing from GOP leadership in DC has not yet jumped in the race. Like, for instance, Dan Sullivan the Commissioner of DNR. Things might get even more interesting, as another moderate candidate jumps into an already contentious primary race, splitting that vote, and leaving the Tea Party activist to scoop up the base.