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September 22, 2021

The Whole State Has Gone Mad – a Tour.

This week has been particularly mind-boggling everywhere from the Capitol in Juneau to the Anchorage Assembly chamber, to the Kenai Peninsula, Fairbanks, and the Mat-Su. All I can say is suit up, because we’re going to take a dive and look at it all. IN JUNEAU The Special Session took a crazy turn Wednesday night. The legislature was slated to vote on what was shaping up to be an $1100 PFD, to fund scholarships, and get it done, and the floor session was ready to start… But 18 of the 38 legislators who were in the Capitol decided not to show up. Taking into…

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GOP Senator Says Firearm Might Help Pass Agenda

FINANCE FIREWORKS About the most exciting thing to happen so far in the current special session was the fireworks display in the Senate Finance Committee this week. Granted ‘fireworks’ by Senate Finance Committee standards sounds to most people like ‘stern words’ but for the Senate Finance Committee, that’s FIREWORKS. The purpose of the meeting was to hear from Alexei Painter, the Director of Legislative Finance, to summarize the fiscal situation of the state and to go over the governor’s heinous hacking of the budget. The governor got uniformly raked over the coals for his vetoes.  Donny Olson (D-Golovin) was extremely…

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AK lawmaker speaks at Pillow Symposium & the losingest losers lose again.

THE LOSING STREAK CONTINUES In the recent history of Alaska legislative elections, there’s never been someone so smug, so obnoxious, and so mansplainy that his loss deserved celebration like Lance Pruitt (R-East Anchorage). His Twitter trolling, and actual stalkerish drive-by’s of his opponent’s home taking pictures were the icing on the cake. Then there was this, on the day before the election. File that one under “This Aged Badly.” Dr. Liz Snyder pulled off a win IN HOUSE DISTRICT 27 and sent “Speaker Pruitt” (yes, he’d moved into the office in his mind) packing. He was even fined almost $20,000 for…

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Alaska Gov Pals Around With Insurrection Instigator

DOZENS ATTENDED! The on-again-off-again fundraiser to fight the Recall Dunleavy campaign has finally happened after being canceled earlier this summer. The governor, who decries “east coast elites” and out-of-state influence on Alaska campaigns, brought at least a dozen Alaska Republicans with him to Donald Trump’s east coast elite golf course in Bedminster, New Jersey to collect out-of-state money to influence an Alaska campaign. Donald Trump, you may remember, is the one who fomented a violent insurrection attempt to overthrow of the United States government because he lost the election. He and the Tall One are buddies. The dozen or more Alaskans…

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Secret Mormon fascist outed in the Department of Law?

WHY THE LATEST LAWSUIT AGAINST DUNLEAVY IS A BIG DEAL Power Cost Equalization. Don’t leave! I know it sounds dull and wonky, but the implications of this one are far-reaching. Back in the 80’s Alaskans were trying to figure out how to help reduce energy costs for all Alaskans. Some regions got giant infrastructure projects like concrete dams for hydropower. Other regions didn’t, and their energy costs showed it. So, in 2000 a fund was established so rural residents got something called “power cost equalization” which means what it says – the state put some money in an account that would help…

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Alaska GOP Goes Full Cannibal

BUT… BUT… HE’S TALL!   It’s like we were saying in 2018. It’s not a good idea to vote for someone because they’re tall. Voting for an ineffective State Senator who says whatever his base wants to hear whether it’s true, or achievable, or not, will get you exactly where we are. CNBC has rated Alaska the worst state for business, and much is due to Gov. Dunleavy & Co. sabotaging our potential, or being unable to get things done, like statewide broadband. From the article: “This month, Dunleavy vetoed more than $200 million in state spending approved by the…

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Shenanigans & a Secret Stalker!

It’s a shortened week because of the holiday, the legislature has gaveled out for now, and it seems that most of the political world was quiet during the fourth of July weekend. With one major exception. THE GOVERNOR DID SOMETHING GOOD! No, you don’t need to clean your glasses, he really did. Okay, granted, it was totally by accident and not what he intended to do at ALL, and he tried to worm out of it once it was done, but none the less. Last Thursday, Dunleavy made the big announcement that he was going to veto a proposed $4…

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He’s Baaa-aaack!

Remember the old Gov. Mike Dunleavy? Did you think the massive recall effort against him woke him up and that maybe he was trying to be more cooperative, more reasonable, less hatchety? Silly you. The governor has red-lined the legislature’s budget and released his own version. It cuts the Permanent Fund Dividend, foster care programs, ferry funding (Guess the Marine Highway System isn’t quite dead after his last attempt), and lots of other things. Will the legislature (who struggled to get THIS budget passed) be able to override any of these vetoes? ¯\_(ツ)_/¯  Here are the quick hot takes from…

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Government Shutdown Looms

Gadzooks, what a week! Alaskans are understandably suffering some serious emotional whiplash if they’ve been paying attention to what’s afoot in the Capitol. The governor recently sent an email blast urging a no vote on the budget. His contingent of minority Republicans was listening. At first we thought there was going to be a government shutdown, then at the last minute a budget was passed with bipartisan support despite the governor’s appeals to kill it, and it looked like we were out of the woods.  Narrator: They were not out of the woods. IT’S ALL FUN AND GAMES, BUT WITHOUT THE…

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Wasilla Rep. wants marriage defense for ‘rape by fraud’

MISSION ACCOMPLISHED The legislature finalized House Bill 76 this week that allows Alaska to keep millions of dollars in critical federal covid-related funding. But it didn’t come easy. The House passed their version of the bill back in March, then it went to the Senate, which brought it to the floor with 41 amendments, and only 2 days to spare before the money evaporated.  Republicans had some doozies. Majority leader Shelley Hughes (R-Palmer) had an amendment which said that “biological girls should play biological girls, and biological boys should play biological boys” in high school sports. Minority Leader Tom Begich (D-Anchorage) pointed out…

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