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September 20, 2021

The Good, the Bad, & the Beginning of the End

NO BY PROXY Remember a few months ago when an angry rioting mob stormed the Capitol in Washington D.C. armed with bear spray, flag poles, baseball bats, and other assorted weaponry and tried to hunt down members of Congress, and overthrow a legal democratic election? Apparently some members of Congress would like to just gloss that over. Last week the House of Representatives voted 252-175 to create a bipartisan committee to investigate how that happened and what we ought to do about it. 35 Republicans voted for it. Don Young was not one of them.  Don Young has missed 14.2% of roll…

Unconstitutional & Unfit

WHAT-THE-HECK-A-THON – Part 1 We had not one but two marathon floor sessions this week. It started off in the House where mostly-minority Republican budget amendments were considered. Several passed with the assistance of majority Republicans, most notably Rep. Kelly Merrick (R-Eagle River) and House Speaker Louise Stutes (R-Kodiak). (Remember the majority coalition in the House is made up of Democrats, and a few independents and Republicans – the minority contains only Republicans who don’t want to work with Dems).  The operating budget finally passed 23-16 with two minority members (who were in the majority coalition last year but defected this year) Bart LeBon (R-Fairbanks) and Steve Thompson (R-Fairbanks) crossing over to vote…

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,…

Alaska Republicans Say the Darndest Things

TALL TALES from Juneau Eyes on the Dunleavy Disaster NEVER LET A GOOD DISASTER GO TO WASTE That’s the hallmark of Republican politics. Remember the Patriot Act that got shoved through during the immediate aftermath of 9/11 – chock-full of provisions to trample civil liberties and violate the Constitution? It was basically ready to go, and waiting for an opportunity. Well, don’t think that COVID-19 isn’t going to have its own set of nefarious legislation that gets implemented during these days of crisis when people are looking the other way. We’ve already seen public money dumped into funding the private…

You Can’t Fire a Fetus & Other Lessons from the Alaska Legislature

TALL TALES from Juneau Eyes on the Dunleavy/Babcock administration It’s been a week since the marathon joint session convened and voted on Governor Mike Dunleavy’s appointees to boards and commissions – and there have been a few developments with some of the rejected nominees. “EAGLEXIT” First, there was Mike Tovaliero. He was the one rejected from the Board of Realtors for several reasons including: his seeming lack of understanding of which board he was nominated for;  his losing interview strategy of being belligerent to legislators and not forthcoming when asked questions; and his problematic Twitter feed which featured both original…

Ghosts in the Political Machine. No, really. Ghosts!

TALL TALES from Juneau Eyes on the Babcock/Arduin/Dunleavy administration Subscribe to TALL TALES here   HOORAY! YOU DON’T HAVE TO BE GAY… Kelly Tshibaka, Gov. Dunleavy’s replacement pick for Commissioner of Administration (after first pick, Jonathan Quick, the “yogurt entrepreneur” was found to be lying on his resume) is certainly qualified for the job on paper. Nevertheless, she has some ideological issues which ought to raise serious concerns for someone wanting a position overseeing a very large and diverse government workforce. In 2002, Tshibaka (under her maiden name Kelly Hartline) wrote the following in the Harvard Law Record about “National…

Oh no they didn’t… the week in gaffes, goofs and OMGs

TALL TALES from Juneau Eyes on the Babcock/Arduin/Dunleavy administration Oh yes, they DID.   It’s been a week of face-palm inducing, cringe-worthy, jaw-dropping gaffes and goofs in Juneau and beyond. It’s hard to know where to begin. So, we may as well start with the “beyond Juneau” part.   SEN. DAN SULLIVAN The Senate Armed Services Committee recently questioned top generals on President Trump’s “national emergency” declaration along the U.S.-Mexico border. Sen. Dan Sullivan was unsurprisingly supportive of the national emergency. To justify this support, he asked U.S. Northern Command General Terrence O’Shaughnessy how many Americans were killed by opioid…