Crawford throws his hat in the race to run against Giessel

Harry Crawford, a former Alaska state legislator and contender for the U.S. Congress, said on Thursday that he’s going to challenge Republican Alaska state Sen. Cathy Giessel in 2014. “Unless something drastic happens, that’s how I’m going to spend 2014,” Crawford said.

Crawford was in the House from 2001 to 2011 when he stepped down to run against U.S. Rep. Don Young, to whom he lost by a large margin. He also ran for the state Senate primary in another district in 2012 against fellow Democrat Bettye Davis. Davis lost to Sen. Anna Fairclough in the general.

District boundaries have since changed, and some say that the new district lines, which includes the upper Hillside area and Girdwood, are more favorable to a Democrat generally, and specifically to Crawford.

Crawford is a pro-resource development Democrat, an increasingly rare breed in Alaska. Although he wants to repeal the tax breaks made to the oil industry last session, he voted against ACES in 2007, believing that we should tax more on the low end and less on the upper end.

But he’s highly supportive of “getting Alaska back to work” and of big projects: the gas line, damns and mines, to name a few. Or, as he puts it: “Getting the projects out of the ground and the iron in the air.”

Crawford came to Alaska in the 1970s to work on the trans-Alaska pipeline, and was an iron worker for 37 years. He’s from Louisiana and although he said he’s worked in every state west of the Mississippi, he hasn’t lost his home state’s accent.

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12 thoughts on “Crawford throws his hat in the race to run against Giessel

  1. Joanne

    Cathy is patronizing and is a mouthpiece for Parnell. I live on the hill and I’m astonished any woman would support her. She has had opportunities to do the right thing and refuses to do so.

  2. Katherine Pfeiffer

    I am proud to support Harry Crawford. He’s pro-jobs, pro-development and he’s smart. He knows that working behind the scenes with both sides of the aisle is how you get things done in Juneau and he’s not one who really cares if “his name is on it or not.” Not a grandstander. He can point to not only “what he’s going to do…” he can point to “what he has done”. And, he’s as honest as the day is long.

  3. Richard Benavides

    I wouldn’t easily count Harry out of any race. He is incredibly tenacious as evidenced by his running for his House seat against Romona Barnes multiple times until he convinced the people in the district that he was serious and not just a placeholder for the Dems. While there he worked very hard behind the scenes on many Bills (since that’s unfortunately the only option when you’re in the minority). The key is being able to insert provisions to make it a better Bill. Remember, when you look up a law in the statutes, it doesn’t list who introduced it or any of the amendments adopted during the process. It is only the final product that is listed. Introducing a large number of Bills which get your name in the news doesn’t necessarily mean you are a good legislator. There are many questionable Bills introduced each session (anyone remember the Bucky Beaver resolution?). As to energy projects, he was an early proponent and driving factor for the wind farm on Fire Island. He is an advocate for many projects that aren’t necessarily popular with other Democrats. So…do your homework before you make a decision for…either side.

  4. Make it Stop

    Giessel is a mean-spirited person and legislator. She worked hard and wore out many pairs of shoes to join the ranks of professional lame-o’s. Problem is, she’s still better than Crawford on policy, who has his own agenda. Let a good a Republican primary her out.

  5. Tess

    Well, he finally made a decision for which I am glad: however, I am very disappointed that he didn’t run against Rep Lance Pruitt. I have been increasingly disappointed with Pruitt’s behavior in Juneau. I am also very disappointed in the path his wife has chosen to profit from her husband’s position. Her “consultoing” firm does business with many companies that curry favor from the government. While this is not illegal, I do believe that it is not ethically approproiate and has the appeaance of impropriety

  6. sam hill

    Who are you people hiding behind your silly monikers hiding your real identity while criticizing. A good Democrat. Harry Crawford will get my support. I just wished I lived in the district and could vote for him.

  7. OE Slope worker

    Ounds like Crawford is another Democrat who wants to shut down our oilfields. Thanks but no thanks.

  8. Judy on the Hill

    Harry is a nice guy with too much time on his hands.
    My senator, Cathy G, does a great job and works hard representing our district.
    She’s very smart too.
    Harry was NEVER a pro-development guy. He mouthed the words but his actions were different.
    I have no interest in going back to the future.
    I’m sticking with Cathy.

  9. Tom McGrath

    Senator Giessel strikes me as one of the hardest working, smartest members of our legislature. While Crawford comes accross as a nice guy I don’t remember a lot of accomplishments from his tenure in the legislature. He will have to sell the constituents of the district on why a nice guy should have the job when they already have someone that delivers.

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