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October 26, 2021

Headlines:

Dunleavy urges anti-vaxx cops to come to Alaska

MURKOWSKI AND SULLIVAN VOTE NO ON VOTER PROTECTION Both of Alaska’s Republican Senators decided to take a ball-peen hammer to the knees of democracy this week. It’s not surprising, but it’s disappointing. As the U.S. Congress weighs the heavy topic of the sustainability of our very democracy, Murkowski and Sullivan aren’t even pretending to care about voting rights – the foundation of everything. They didn’t vote against anything in particular, mind you, they voted to filibuster the entire Freedom to Vote Act. They don’t even want the subject to come up for debate. They have abused the filibuster to harm democracy,…

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Mayor Pulls Security AND Spit Guard

THREE CHEERS FOR FAIRBANKS! Before we dive in to the usual shenanigans from the local to the federal level, let’s all take a moment to marvel at what just happened in Fairbanks and take a look at the faces that will grace the Borough Assembly and the School Board. Some will return, others are new, but all were enthusiastically supported by the Interior Democrats! At a time when the importance of rational local governance and local elections have never been more plain to see (more on that later), Fairbanks rallied the community with great candidates, solid plans and policies, hard-working…

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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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Sen. Dan Sullivan – Leading in the Wrong Direction

SEN. DAN SULLIVAN ADDRESSES THE LEGISLATURE BUCKLE UP To say it was mind-numbing to listen to Sen. Dan Sullivan in his address to a joint session of the legislature is an understatement.  To say that was surprising wouldn’t be true. Mind you, he’s not up for reelection until 2026. His job security is solid. He doesn’t need to pander and whip up “the base” to get votes any more. This was the perfect opportunity to deliver a positive address, looking to the future, reassuring the 44% of Alaskans who didn’t vote for him that maybe he wasn’t so bad, and…

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Shenanigans & Malarkey

No, it’s not a sketchy Irish law firm – it’s this week in the Alaska State Legislature. THE BUDGET LOOMS It’s that time in the legislative session, when all the budget subcommittees that take on little bite-sized pieces of the big budget and make recommendations, are starting to wind down. Soon all those little pieces will reconnect and we’ll be on to the next phase. But for right now, part of the draft budget includes a controversial line item we’ve been keeping our eye on.  Remember a few weeks ago when there was a hearing about the Dunleavy administration’s move…

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Meet Your Republican Candidates, & Bring the Popcorn

It’s hard to know where to begin these days, but let’s start with something nasty that’s brewing which will directly affect the policy positions of Republican candidates, and tells us exactly what to expect if Republicans manage to take back the majority in the State House this November. HINT: It’s going to look a lot like the horrific beginning of last session only there won’t be anyone to stop it. WHAT AR THEY DUIN? A strained pun is about the best you can get out of the absolute fiscal disaster the Republican Party is cooking up. Remember when Tuckerman Babcock,…

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The COVID Caucus Out on the Town

ALWAYS LOOK ON THE BRIGHT SIDE Let’s start off with a little Facebook gem from Rep. Steve Thompson (R-Fairbanks). It takes a look at the sunny side of the COVID-19 pandemic. Hey, you guys… Don’t think of it as 168,000 dead Americans – think of how many Americans are still alive! Considering that any day now, COVID-19 is going to be the third leading cause of death in the United States, it’s hard not to wonder when Rep. Thompson will stop thinking that the “panic is out of control.” And if you google Rep. Steve Thompson, here’s his weirdly ironic…

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Anchorage Assemblywoman – “Wear your mask!”

TALL TALES from Juneau and the D.C. Debacle   OOPS After last week’s edition of Tall Tales hit your screen, Dan Sullivan let all Alaskans know how it feels when your United States Senator can’t even tell the difference between two civil rights icons that he served with in Congress. He expressed his obligatory regrets at the passing of Rep. John Lewis by posting a picture of himself in front of the Smithsonian’s new Musem of African-American History and Culture with… the late Rep. Elijah Cummings. He wasn’t the only one to make this cringe-worthy gaffe – His fellow Republican…

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Wasilla GOP Candidate Forum Madness!

I WATCHED THE MAT-SU REPUBLICAN CANDIDATE FORUM SO YOU DON’T HAVE TO Yep, I watched it all, courtesy of the video taken by the eponymously-named Republican blogger, “Politadick.” There’s no easy way to prepare you for this, so let’s just dive in. But first, a visit to the United States Flag Code:   THE EMCEE: Mike Coons, recently reappointed by Gov. Dunleavy to the Alaska Commission on Aging hosted a Mat-Su candidate forum this past weekend. It took place at the Senior Center in Wasilla. Why isn’t the governor’s appointee to the Commission on Aging wearing a mask at an…

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