At some point, Sen. Lisa Murkowski is going to have to face the Valley tea party masses, which isn’t often pretty. Those people are not above yelling and hissing and booing, which might be okay if they also didn’t have a set of facts on hand to justify it all. They know all about cloture, and filibusters, and why Obama purposely infected the nation with Ebola. They know not only what the debt ceiling is, but how much it is, and they know that it’s all leading to some sort of UN takeover that involves a one-world currency and FEMA camps. They also know that they, along with other Valley Republicans—and unfortunately you can’t pick and choose– are the ones who will likely have a big hand in deciding who wins a Republican primary. Anyway, apparently Murkowski has had better things to do, for months and months now. This weekend, the first weekend after Congress adjourned for the break, she opted for the relatively urban, friendly confines of Anchorage, where on Friday, you could find her at the annual Republican Women’s holiday lunch at the Captain Cook Hotel. The annual luncheon was started by Sen. Ted Stevens in 1978 and Murkowski has continued the tradition and added her own touch: each table was decorated with holiday cookies from a traditional Murkowski family recipe. Guests also found ornaments, created by an Alaskan artist, on their plates and each was signed by Alaska’s senior senator. The room was packed. Also spotted: U. S. Sen.-elect Dan Sullivan and his wife Julie, Reps. Dan Sadler and Gabrielle LeDoux, Rep.-elect Cathy Tilton, Marilyn Stewart, Art and April Hackney, mayoral candidate Dan Coffey, Wanda Green, Angelina Burney, Robin Phillips, and Kara Moriarty. Kay Linton’s daughter, Dawn, hosted a table at the event with an empty chair to honor her mother, who before her passing was always a fixture at the annual event.
Later that same evening, the Midnight Sun Republican Women’s Club held their annual Holiday party at the home of Gail and Walt Phillips. About 50 people attended including, guess who? Sen. Lisa Murkowski and Sen.-elect Dan and Julie Sullivan. Also spotted: Mayor Dan Sullivan, MSRWC’s president Angelina Burney, Frank and Jeanie McQueary, Margy Johnson, April and Art Hackney, Robin Phillips, Rep. Gabrielle LeDoux, Larry and Annie Baker, Rep. Lindsey Holmes, Suzanne Downing, Cheryl Frasca, Marilyn Stewart, Susan Fischetti, Caitkin Burton Kilcher, Sharon Jackson, Terranova Tasker, Kelly Hoglin, Holly Kelty, Rebecca Mahaney and her husband Roy Guernsey to name a few.
Murkowski had a fundraiser in Girdwood on Saturday evening, a whole universe away from Wasilla.
Sen.-elect Dan Sullivan and his family hosted a holiday reception Sunday afternoon at the home of Stephen and Jo Ann Routh on Lilac Drive, which should be named “Houses to Die for Drive.” It was, in a word, festive. It was also very moneyed and very Republican. Spotted among the crowd of 200 plus people were: Assemblywoman Jennifer Johnston, Dr. Joe and Tyra Chandler, David Wight, Dana and Deanna Pruhs, Rep. Mike Hawker, Marc Langland, Matthew Thayer brought his parents Curtis and Josie, July Lamb, Dr. Iona Farr, Maynard Tapp, Scott Kendall, Tony Oney, Randy Ruedrich, Otto and Nancy Feather, Joe Balash, Dawn Linton, Dennis and Patricia Fradley, George and Brenda Wuerch, John and Candace Hendrix, Rev. Jerry Prevo and his wife Carole, Rep. Lora Rinebold, Tim Fitzpatrick and Tina Pidgeon, Ken and Myrna Maynard, Sen. Cathy Giessel, Marie Nash, Chris and Pam Birch, and Joe Masters.
Clark Bickford is joining Rep. Gabrielle LeDoux’s staff. He is the son of lobbyist Frank Bickford and has previously worked for the legislature as a cook in the legislative lounge on the second floor of the capitol.
Sterling Gallagher, who was one of Gov. Jay Hammond’s commissioners of Revenue, is back in state service. He’s now a policy analyst for Gov. Bill Walker, and word is will be advising Walker on all things financial.
Congressional employees whose bosses lose an election are given two months wages from the time they leave office. What do they have to do for that? Apparently, not much, not even while their boss is technically still a senator. Begich’s office in D.C. is shuttered, and word is the offices in the state are empty too.
A question that’s been asked more than once: Will Darwin Peterson, the governor’s new leg director, still get to play Sen. Lesil McGuire in the legislative skits? Please let it be so.
Sen. Berta Gardner just returned from Laos–and it wasn’t a legislative junket.
I’m getting reports of bleached skinned Alaskans spotted on the islands of the 50th state. Dan Hickey and Laurie Herman have been spotted in Kauai. Rep. Lynn Gattis and her husband Rick are reported to be frolicking on the Big Island as are John and Nicole Harris. Lets just hope they don’t run into each other on the island’s nude beaches.
From conversations and comments posted on this site, there appears to be some confusion and curiosity about the political affiliations of some of the Walker administration appointees. It seems like a lot of the focus has been on our new Attorney General, Craig Richards, and people wondering what party he belongs to. So, I looked him up and can report that he’s a registered Republican. However, before people jump to any conclusions, I can tell you with confidence that he doesn’t vote for the Republicans very often. In fact, according to Motznik’s on-line state records–which might not have yet recorded the last election–he’s voted four
three times since 2005 and hasn’t voted once in local elections. ( There’s even a question as to whether he voted in the last election. But once again, that might be Motznik. Sorry. Database hasn’t been updated.) And if there’s any confusion over the new DOL commissioner check out the sweatshirt Heidi Drygas is wearing in the pic below with AK AFL-CIO Big Kahuna Vince Beltrami:
House Speaker John Boehner announced the President has been invited to address a joint session of Congress in the House Chamber on Tuesday, January 20, 2015. So it won’t interfere with the governor’s inaugural ball schedule, which has been finalized:
- Jan. 3 – Valdez
- Jan. 10 – Juneau
- Jan. 17 – Nome
- Jan. 24 – Fairbanks
- Jan. 31 – Anchorage
- Feb. 6 – Wasilla
- Mar. 7 – Ketchikan
Happy holidays to all.
Contact Amanda Coyne at firstname.lastname@example.org