Loose Lips: KTVA goes bong. V2RD hits Alaska. Delbridge joins Parnell campaign.

Meantime, just another Sunday at KTVA, only this time going to pot and potty mouth when reporter Charlo Green, the Anchorage girl who came to the new station from WOWK in West Virginia, took to the mic, in a moment that will go down in broadcast history:

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What you missed on this video (and what you can see in others that don’t include the infectious laughter) was Green’s admission that she owns the Alaska Cannabis Club. Green has done multiple stories on the pot initiative and the anti-pot folks had for a while been complaining about her attitude, complaints which were supposedly brushed off and complaints that will come back and haunt the station manager, particularly when the first FCC complaint gets filed in three…two… one…bong!

The anti-pot folks wasted no time. They sent out a fundraising email two hours after the incident entitled appropriately, “loss of local control.”

If you’re up at 7 a.m. on Monday, tune into the Dan Fagan and Glen Biegel show. They’ll be talking to Brad Keithley about some of the charges leveled at him. Tune in at 95.5 FM, and 1080 AM in Anchorage and 92.5 FM and 1020 AM in the Valley. Or listen on line here.

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Comment of the day: ‘Who made Brad the Great White Hope?’

The below came from a reader in reaction to Brad Keithley’s legislative “hit list.” While I don’t endorse everything that the reader is saying, it’s provocative enough and enough people are saying variations of the same thing, that I asked if I could publish it. (Read the backstory here and here.)

Thank you for your recent posting about Brad Keithley. It’s fascinating, but, Christ, what a pompous, arrogant, craven, hypocritical, and sanctimonious ass he is. With a selective standard for measuring legislators.

Most of his comments slamming his targets could have applied to nearly every damn lawmaker. Why single out these bastards, Brad? Why not rage against the entire machine?

For example, nearly every legislator last session voted for SB 119, the capital budget bill. Only one voted no: Sen. Berta Gardner.  (See here.) The previous year, no one voted against the capital budget, SB 18, including Berta. (See here.) And yet Brad harpoons only a couple of legislators for voting for both capital budgets.

What a sham. But it’s to be expected from a newcomer who wasn’t here in Alaska during the 1990s when oil prices were below $10 a barrel. He missed the debate from that era — including the infamous 83 percent rejection by voters of a fiscal plan on a 1999 advisory ballot measure. He missed the context for larger capital budgets that started to emerge in 2005 and how they addressed pent-up demand for infrastructure that couldn’t be built during a time of fiscal restraint.

He may bristle at all this and dismiss it as nothing more than the foolish consistency uttered by the hobgoblin of little minds, to mangle Ralph Waldo Emerson. But who made Brad the Great White Hope, here to save us dumb locals from ourselves? It’s the kind of arrogance that many have come to expect from arrogant white men. So presumptuous. So full of themselves.

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Mayor Dan says he didn’t ‘step in’ it

Here’s a response from Anchorage Mayor Dan Sullivan, who’s running for lieutenant governor, copied from the comments to a post on this site alleging that he had stepped in it when talking about the Permanent Fund on the Dave Stieren radio talk show recently. I wanted to highlight it because Sullivan’s response is pretty good and it’s refreshing when a public figure takes the time to do so. Judging from most of the reactions from readers, they feel similarly. Read those in the comment section here:

I didn’t step in anything Amanda. I am a big supporter of the dividend as it represents Alaskans ownership interest in our state’s wealth. Mr. Weinstrup apparently doesn’t understand that the dividend is just one part of the fund earnings. Earnings are also used to inflation proof the fund and to add to the corpus of the fund. If the corpus ever grows so large that after the dividend and inflation proofing, some earnings could be used for essential services after oil revenues are gone is certainly a discussion Alaskans will have over the next generation. This is the scenario Norway has anticipated with their Generation Fund. Growing our fund’s corpus along with controlling spending is the key and something I have firsthand experience at. As mayor I have significantly reduced the growth of government spending, produced five straight years of budget surpluses while restoring the integrity of the tax cap and saving taxpayers over $100 million in the process. Our trust fund is at an all time high. We are the only city in Alaska history to achieve a AAA bond rating and last year Kiplinger.com named us the 9th best city in America. I would say we’re doing something right. These results illustrate the skills I will bring to state government. Meanwhile, I am sure for the remaining 45 days we will have to suffer through these pathetic attempts by TPWAC (the party without a candidate) to try and manufacture ‘gotcha’ moments.

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Lt. gov. candidate Mayor Dan steps in it with Permanent Fund talk

If things weren’t bad enough already for Gov. Sean Parnell’s campaign, his second on the ticket, Anchorage Mayor Dan Sullivan who’s running for lieutenant governor, talked about using the Permanent Fund to help fund state government in the future. To be fair, he was talking about far into the future, but still, dipping into the Permanent Fund is the third rail of Alaska politics.

The Democrats saw the opportunity and jumped.

“After plunging Alaska into deficits of over $7 million per day, it’s no wonder that Team Parnell is already pondering which piggy bank to raid next. The PFD belongs to the people, not government bureaucrats,” said Mike Wenstrup, Chair of the Alaska Democratic Party.

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Former Alaska AG and lt. gov argue to keep Walker-Mallott ticket on ballot

Here’s an op-ed written by former state Attorney General Bruce Botelho and former Lt. Gov. Stephen McAlpine, arguing that the lawsuit to keep the “Unity” ticket off the ballot has “no merit.”

On September 17, attorney and Republican Party activist Ken Jacobus went to court on behalf of the Republican Party’s district chair, Steve Strait, in an attempt to remove Parnell’s only significant opposition from the ballot.  Mr. Jacobus’ theory is that Lieutenant Governor Mead Treadwell could not adopt emergency regulations to permit Bill Walker to substitute Byron Mallott as his running mate.  Jacobus has demanded that the court bar Mr. Walker and Mr. Mallott from appearing “as a combined non-party ticket”. In our judgment, this lawsuit has no merit. Continue reading

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Inside/Outside morning news roundup

  • The ADN’s Rich Mauer is reporting that Sens. Lisa Murkowski and Mark Begich are requesting more federal oversight for the scandal-plagued Alaska National Guard. Murkowski is requesting that the GAO investigate how the DOD manages serious National Guard allegations. Begich is aiming to increase the Pentagon’s authority with the AK Nat. Guard.
  • Gubernatorial candidate Bill Walker refutes Gov. Sean Parnell’s claim that Pt. Thomson deal is great for Alaska in an ADN Compass piece.
  • In another Compass piece, Anchorage Assemblywoman Elvi Gray Jackson slams Mayor Dan Sullivan on his administration’s alleged mismanagement of key muni projects and departments.
  • Sen. Murkowski told Reuters that 2015 could be the year to lift the 40-year-old ban on exporting crude oil. “I think it may be timely then,” Sen. Lisa Murkowski, the top Republican on the Senate Energy Committee, told Reuters.
  • The Fairbanks News Miner reports on a legal dispute between Alaska Communications System and the Fairbanks North Star Borough over whether ACS can charge the borough for daily updates to the borough’s 911 system, updates that GCI provides for free. Continue reading
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LeDoux stands up to Keithley with scathing response

Anchorage Republican Rep. Gabrielle LeDoux wrote a scathing response to the news that “fiscal hawk” Brad Keithley has chosen her to be on what’s being called his “hit list.” Keithley announced on Thursday that he is going to put some of his promised $200,000 into supporting her opponent,  Democrat Laurie Hummel. (See the backstory here). LeDoux vows not to be “pushed around” and accuses Keithley of having a reputation of “bullying and taking advantage of women.”

Here’s LeDoux’s press release:

“Brad Keithley is a very intelligent man with a lot of money. He also has a reputation for bullying and taking advantage of women. I have a very simple message for Mr. Keithley: having raised two children by myself I learned to be a strong woman who doesn’t get pushed around by bullies.

I am very proud of my legislative record and I don’t believe this has anything to do with fiscal responsibility. This is about a man who needs to be in the limelight to make himself look important.

If my opponent is counting on Mr. Keithley’s money to attack my record – she is yet another woman being led down the garden path by a snake oil salesman.

I have a reputation for working hard, listening to voters at their doors, and acting on their concerns in the state legislature. If Mr. Keithley wants to impact politics – I suggest he try it the old fashioned way – by knocking on doors and looking people in the eye.”

As evidenced by the numerous conversations I’ve had with women who have known Keithley,  the latter charge about this reputation appears to be true.

Keithley found LeDoux’s response amusing: Continue reading

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Walker-Mallott joins lawsuit to keep ‘Unity’ ticket on ballot

“Unity” ticket candidates Bill Walker and Byron Mallott are intervening in the lawsuit filed on Wednesday that challenges Lt. Mead Treadwell on his decision to certify the ticket. (Background here.)

From the campaign’s press release:

The campaign retained Anchorage attorney, Scott Kendall of Holmes, Weddle, and Barcott who represented the Murkowski campaign in 2010 and has extensive experience litigating election law issues in Alaska.

Mr. Kendall stated: “The replacement of candidates after the primary election has occurred many times in Alaska. The process that was followed by the Walker-Mallott ticket was the exact process used in each of the preceding instances. Continue reading

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Loose Lips: Ubiquitous Coffey misses Palin brawl. Mead for mayor? Love bugs bite.

Loose LipsWell, that didn’t last very long. Reggie Drummond, who became the administrator for the Legislative Ethics Committee in June, resigned effective September 15th. Drummond was a combat vet who did three tours in Iraq and one in Bosnia, and was most recently an Inspector General for the Army in Alaska. Joyce Anderson who previously served in this position will serve in an acting capacity until they find a replacement.

Anchorage mayoral candidate Dan Coffey is nothing if not ubiquitous. Hang out in a coffee shop? There’s Coffey, interviewing an expert on waste disposal. A restaurant? There he is, talking to the waiter about what he could do to make the city better. A bar? Well, he doesn’t drink, but he still likes bar owners. On Saturday, September 6, he and his wife Pauline put on their finest and headed to the Anchorage Symphony. After that was over, still wearing his tux, they stopped by a birthday party for twins of a long-time friend, Mike McKenna. He stayed for about 45 minutes. As he was leaving, he noticed a stretch Hummer limo, and Todd and Sarah Palin milling about in front of it. He also noticed someone with his shirt off standing outside with a group of guys. Did he think it was strange? “No. I’m glad I left early,” he said.

Kate Giard, the new chief financial officer for the Municipality of Anchorage, took the reins of the city’s finance department this week from Lucinda Mahoney who retired effective September 12th.  Giard served the city in the same position from 2000 – 2003 and was then appointed to serve on the Regulatory Commission of Alaska.

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Inside/Outside morning news roundup

  • Gov. Parnell’s “milestone” label for the new Alaska-Japan LNG agreement has Dermot Cole scratching his head. In the ADN, Cole points out the striking resemblance between the new AK-Japan LNG memo and the one-year old AK-Japan LNG memo in vague language, tone and intent.
  • Meantime, Gov. Sean Parnell’s op-ed about Bill Walker’s lack of a gas pipeline plan is still reverberating through the tubes.
  • U.S. Senate candidate Dan Sullivan explained his change in heart regarding his new-found support for the minimum wage ballot measure in the News Miner.
  • A lawsuit was filed to challenge decision by Lt. Governor Mead Treadwell to allow the pairing of Bill Walker and Byron Mallott for the gubernatorial race.

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Keithley releases legislative ‘hit list’

“Fiscal hawk” Brad Keithley has released what has being called his “hit list” of state legislative candidates that he’ll target, and ones he’ll support, in upcoming races, with up to $200,000 of his own money.

He’ll be opposing the following three incumbents:

  • Republican House Majority Leader Lance Pruitt in East Anchorage.
  • Republican Rep. Gabrielle LeDoux in East Anchorage.
  • Democrat Rep. Geran Tarr in East/ and Midtown Anchorage.

Their challengers are Democrat Matt Moore, Democrat Laurie Hummel, and Libertarian Cean Stevens.

In an open House seat in West Anchorage, he will be supporting Republican House candidate Anand Dubey over Democrat Matt Claman.

Tarr is in the Minority and LeDoux is not part of the House leadership.

Keithley said he’ll be “closely watching” two Senate seats, and potentially an additional House race.

Anchorage-based Keithley, a lawyer until recently with Perkins Coie Continue reading

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Lawsuit filed to remove “Unity” ticket from ballot

On Wednesday, Steve Strait and Frank McQueary, who are both state Republican Party officials, filed a lawsuit challenging Lt. Gov. Mead Treadwell’s decision to allow Bill Walker and Byron Mallott to run together in the governor’s race as the “Unity” ticket. Treadwell oversees the division of elections. He certified the ticket on September 2, the last day such changes were allowed.

Two days before the due date, on Labor Day, the Alaska Democratic Party’s state Central Committee voted to put Walker, a Republican who had been running as an Independent, on top of the ticket, and Byron Mallott, who had won the Democratic gubernatorial primary, as his lieutenant governor. The switch was made because the party didn’t think they could win any other way. Alaska state Sen. Hollis French, who won the Democratic nomination for lieutenant governor, is now not running for anything. It was one of the stranger acts of politics in Alaska, and among other things, means that for the first time in history, the Democratic Party will not have a Democratic candidate running for governor.

Long-time lawyer Ken Jacobus is representing Strait and McQueary, who are paying for it themselves, they said. Continue reading

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#Snowmachinegate

Get your background here.

 

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New Sullivan commercial accuses Begich of ‘laaame’ snow machine tricks

GOP Senate candidate Dan Sullivan’s campaign released an ad featuring Soldotna snow machine racer Cory Davis, a four-time X-Games medalist. The commercial accuses Sen. Mark Begich of “lame” snow machine fakery in Begich’s own snow machine commercial that was shot in the Interior earlier in the campaign.

“I know something about snow machines. That’s why I had a good laugh, when I saw Mark Begich pretending to ride one,” Davis says in the ad. “Begich acts like Mr. Alaskan when he wants our vote, but the truth is, he votes with Obama and his D.C. friends, not Alaska. I’m tired of the phony politicians and Mark Begich’s lame tricks.”

It’s one of Sullivan’s best ads to date. At the very least, it’s kind of fun to watch. That might be why Begich told Politico that he thinks the ad should be “pulled,” because it’s not factual.

Here’s Begich to Politico on that earlier, snow machine experience:

One guy for example, wore an AR-15 around his shoulders because the area we were going to is where polar bears are, and he wanted to make sure we weren’t going to be attacked… To say that I wasn’t on that snow machine riding it? I rode it for a long time out there and in weather that was very cold that day to the point where I frostbit part of my ear… Look at the picture of me when I take my helmet off. That’s what we call ‘helmet hair,’ that’s when you’re riding a snow machine.

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