Fat Taco Tuesday at Mead Treadwell’s office

About 30 or so people made their way to GOP Senate candidate Lt. Gov. Mead Treadwell’s campaign office in Anchorage to celebrate fat Tuesday. The food, much like the people who showed, was interesting. Tacos, baklava, cornbread, and Girl Scout Thin Mints. Like the crowd, none of it should have mixed, but it did.

Ramona Specking who manages a hotel and speaks French, German and conversational Spanish was there. Irene Green who runs an international bed and breakfast who speaks those three plus Dutch and Italian had with her an Italian national who biked part of the Iditarod trail. Lars Gleitsmann, a geologist and an airplane pilot was there and spoke authoritatively about Pebble Mine, Tito’s Yugoslavia and Agenda 21. Retired Marine Col. Catkin Burton talked to a woman who is making organic baby food. A smattering of fiercely loyal men who look like they just graduated from Andover stood with crossed arms.

Treadwell isn’t the most inspiring speaker. And to call him quick tempered might be an understatement. So it’s hard to remember, if you ever knew at all, that he surrounds himself with interesting people, people of colors and accents and languages and ideas. Treadwell is billing himself as a socially conservative Republican, but his main followers, his base, are with him less it seems because of his ideology than because they know him, many of them since he came to the state in his 20s.

Treadwell spoke briefly shortly after I arrived. As is his wont, he dug at his main GOP challenger former DNR Commissioner Dan Sullivan, who that night was at a fundraiser in D.C. ‘I’d rather be here in Alaska,” he said.  He promised the crowd that he would continue to run an “aggressive” campaign that will take him across the state to work hard for them and to raise money, something at which he’s not been great.

Let’s be honest: compared to Sullivan, he’s been pretty lousy at it. Then again, most money for a federal race for any candidate comes from Outside, and the thing that Treadwell has going for him doesn’t translate in a stump speech at a fundraiser in Oklahoma, or Nebraska, where men in suits want to bet on someone who smells and talks like a winner. For them, Sullivan — the Marine with a Harvard law degree, the former assistant secretary of state who looks like he just walked out of central casting — is their guy.

To understand what Treadwell brings to the race, you’d have to be at his side at a coffee house in Wasilla, say or talking about fishing in Seward, or about the Arctic in Barrow, or eating tacos and baklava at his campaign headquarters in Midtown Anchorage.

Treadwell said that he has no intentions of dropping out before the primary, and that he’s “in it to win it.” If he is able to hang in there, it won’t be because of the way that he’s tried to out Tea Party Joe Miller, or his constant swipes at Dan Sullivan. In fact, it’ll likely be in spite of those things.

It’ll be because he grew up in this state. “I know him,” Irene Green said. “He’s my friend.”

Contact Amanda Coyne at amandamcoyne@yahoo.com


16 thoughts on “Fat Taco Tuesday at Mead Treadwell’s office

  1. Red State Voter

    This guy is pathetic. No principles, no record of achievements, no personality and doesn’t seem to be able to garner any support.

  2. Make it Stop

    So who did Mead decide to name drop this time? Quick tempered is a good word for it. He doesn’t have the thick skin for the job he wants and is disloyal to people. The ones who know him and surround him are people that he might know skin deep but has not backstabbed them yet.

  3. Republican Voter Now

    I enjoyed the article. Cutely written. Unortunately for Mead, he’s pretty much yesterday’s news. Even the people he serves with in the Parnell administration are not supporting him. I think that speaks legions when someone’s co-workers won’t support you. Most of the governor’s cabinet and even Mike Nizich have attended fundraising events for Dan Sullivan. Treadwell’s campaign has proved to be uninspiring and has fallen on its face. I agree that its time to start focusing more on relevant candidates. By the way, does Mead ever say much why he would be a better candidate? All I hear is him putting down his opponents.

  4. WTF

    Amanda, while I love your blog, I question why you”re wastiing your time writing about Mead’s fantasy. Stu Rothenberg wrote that he was one of the nation’s 10 biggest losers in 2013. That was pretty much confirmed with his pathetiic FEC report. If you wanted to write a story that was meaningful you’d be writing about all he does is campaign and yet he draws a state paycheck. From my perspective, that makes him pretty unethical too. Write about Joe Miller, Dan Sullivan or anybody else that you can thiink of that’s a viable candidate. I don’t think you’ve written one story about the Democrat who is running against Don Young. Nor would I encourage it. He has about as much chance as Treadwell does of winning. There is one difference : at least that guy is ethical, unlike Treadwell. Be relevant.

  5. Truth Teller

    These friendly comments are borderline moronic and are a poor example of manufactured comments by Mead’s campaign. Ridiculous. Mead has appealed to to hardly anyone. I predict he’ll finish LAST in the Republican primary.

  6. thwing Thoughts

    Mr Thwing’s comment re Treadwell and trillion dollar deficit is almost laughable. He can’t even manage the campaign account without going into deficit spending. Sure that’s exactly what we need is more deficot spending.

  7. Bob Thwing

    Mead is the type of person I want to represent me in Washington D.C. He knows Alaska and will help get our country back on the right track. Our trillion dollar deficits need to stop.

  8. Andrew

    Mead is a great man not because he appeals to a certain majority of people, but appeals to all types of Alaskans. The reason for his obvious likeability is that he shares the common goal all alaskans have, regardless of race, background, etc. Mead understands Alaskans and the state, and we need a man who can protect her goals- not some suit from the lower 48. Alaska is not simply a business for Mead, (although he wants it to succeed) but in actually his home. This is where he drives most of his grass root supporters- he cares about his home, and loves it. We need a man who loves Alaska. Anybody who wants to see the state prosper will understand Mead is the man.

  9. Sumner

    It is really nice to see a candidate working with Alaskans instead of looking elsewhere for support. I know that he loves Alaska and wants to see all Alaskans succeed no matter their backgrounds. He has forty years in Alaska under his belt and understands the problems that Alaskans face. Mead is going to be a politician who really stands behind his people and I really hope to see a true representative of Alaskans in the senate!

  10. Aaron

    I like someone who can draw support from every part of the field, and has friends among all. No, he may not be all that fancy, but I never put much store in fancy. Hard work, honesty, and fairness matter – at least to me. Say what you will, good or bad about politicians in general. When I step into the booth to cast my ballot, I’m looking for the person on that ballot who I can say is going to think as much like me as possible. Unequivocally, Mead Treadwell is what this state needs in Washington D.C. – A Senator who can truly represent the spirit and people of Alaska with integrity, and that is something that as far as I am concerned, you can’t put a price on.

  11. Mead is a good dude

    Mead Treadwell talks the talk AND walks the walk…. he has worked with Alaskans in every corner of the state for better than 40 years – so yeah, I think that’s cool that such an eclectic group of people would show up to support him. That’s because he is fair, honest and a good, solid Alaskan guy… It just makes sense that he would be our next Senator

  12. Amy Carroll

    Politicians are all flawed people, just like everyone else. A voter has to size up any given candidate, including his or her flaws, and decide whether he or she is a person who will put constituents first most of the time, try to do the right thing most of the time, will be a like-minded thinker on the important issues of the day. I thought this commentary actually gave me a lot of information about Mead Treadwell that I just haven’t seen elsewhere. Sounds like he is a decent, conservative, Alaskan, who will do what I expect most of the time.

  13. tony s

    I despise the phony, fancy-pants rhetoric of professor types aping jargon-filled European locutions. Guess I should consider myself lucky to have missed this event. There’s a reaon that Mead’s campaign hasn’t caught on – – its Mead.

  14. G. Fischer

    Was this a campaign event or a United Nations meeting? Are “these” friends of Mead’s aware that he has changed his colors this year and continues to be a right wing tea party type Republican ? There are few politicians that turn my stomach as much as this clown. Sounded as if you enjoyed the taco party.

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