GOP official and Keithley take their fight to Facebook

men fighting Some sort of public brouhaha was bound to transpire between Brad Keithley, who is threatening to run for governor, and Frank McQueary, who’s fast becoming the whole trust in Alaska’s GOP shrinking braintrust. They’ve been griping about each other through intermediaries, one of whom would be me, for months.

Now, it’s spread onto Facebook. (Read here and here.)

To be fair, McQueary is the one doing the griping, and Keithley is the one defending himself, but I do detect a gripe in his voice as he does so. As there should be.

Keithley has been touting a message, and it’s one that Republicans, especially Republicans in the governor’s office, don’t much like. Namely, he’s been criticizing Gov. Sean Parnell for overspending and has been calling on him to walk his fiscal conservative talk and to substantially cut the budget. He has said on numerous occasions that if Parnell’s budget isn’t substantially decreased, then he’d consider taking a shot at running as an independent candidate.

By substantial he’s talking about $1.5 billion. That’s a lot of money. Keithley’s been taking his message to the people, armed with charts and graphs, which lay out a worst-case scenario if the budget isn’t cut.

McQueary doesn’t believe that our economy can sustain such a serious budget cut. Besides, he’s suspicious of Keithley’s motives. He’s long been wondering if Keithley isn’t a Democratic spoiler. He points to contributions that Keithley has made to the Dems. Further, he points out that the Alaska Constitution mandates that a candidate for governor be a resident of Alaska for seven years. Keithley says that by the time he runs, if he runs, he will have fulfilled the residency requirements. McQueary isn’t buying it. He points out that Keithley didn’t registered to vote here until 2010.

Keithley argues back that residency doesn’t require voter registration.

And it goes on.

This piece is on the verge of epitomizing the kind of “he-said-she-said” reporting for which sites like this were supposed to provide an antidote.

But I have no great insights here, except to say that perhaps they should get together and have a cup coffee. They’re both smart people and agree on more than they disagree, and if they used their brain powers to figure out HOW to cut to the budget, then we’ll all be in better shape.

Keithley: Since you brought it up, this one’s mostly on you.

As McQueary said when I talked to him, quod erat demonstrandum. Spenard translation: Them’s fightin’ words.

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