Leading up to GOP primary, Put Alaska First puts its money into going after Sullivan

Here’s the latest attack ad against U.S. Sen. candidate Dan Sullivan by the pro-Mark Begich super-PAC Put Alaska First, entitled “Decisions.” The ad is part of a new $439,000 media buy, which runs from August 1-10. This one, like the previous Put Alaska First ads, focuses on Sullivan’s role in HB77, a highly controversial bill that died in the Legislature last session amid public outcry. The bill would have cut through the permitting process to develop Alaska’s lands, and would have cut some Alaskans out of the process.

The ad is a compilation of the others that have gone before it. The kicker is when former Democratic lawmaker Sam Cotten says, “This idea was absolutely cooked up from someone who wasn’t from here,”  which continues the theme of Sullivan not being from the state. It should be noted, however, that although Sullivan had a hand in drafting the bill, many Alaskan Republican lawmakers, as well as Gov. Sean Parnell, and many in the Department of Natural Resources including the current commissioner, supported the bill.

Put Alaska First has spent at least $3.5 million going after Sullivan, with some success, according to polls, which show Sullivan having higher negatives than would be normal for someone who has never held elected office. So far, the PAC has left the other candidates, Mead Treadwell and Joe Miller largely alone. Expect more ads against Sullivan leading up to the primary.

Anchorage-based political consultant Marc Hellenthal said that you can tell who Begich and his supporters are most threatened by based on those ads. They’d love to see Miller win, he said. But that’s likely too much of a long-shot. So they’ve settled on Treadwell.

“Begich wants Treadwell to win, or he’d be attacking him,” Hellenthal said. “They don’t want to run against Sullivan.”



10 thoughts on “Leading up to GOP primary, Put Alaska First puts its money into going after Sullivan

  1. Donna B

    This isn’t a spelling bee; it’s a campaign for U.S. Senate. Begich would love nothing more than to run against Mead Treadwell, who has run one of the most abysmal campaigns we’ve seen in Alaska. If not for the Democrats spending millions to attack Sullivan, Treadwell would be a distant memory.

  2. Brad

    Being the only US Senator NOT to graduate college, Mark does not want to run against anyone, let alone educated, successful people like Mead Treadwell. The Republican primary will determine who the next Senator from Alaska will be.

  3. Lynn Willis

    There is more to these campaigns then who is spending how much money or has a statistically insignificant lead over the other. For example, the ADN is reporting that perhaps five illegal immigrant children have been sent to a sponsor(s) in Alaska? http://www.adn.com/article/20140801/ak-beat-parnell-get-bottom-report-about-illegal-immigrant-children-alaska
    I would like to hear the opinions of these senatorial candidates regarding this topic and specifically on the actions of Governor Parnell regarding this rumor. Our Governor, who was more than willing to ignore the sexual abuse charges in his own Alaska National Guard, has quickly responded to this issue in typical Parnell ultra-partisan fashion. Every single gesture by Sean Parnell is first couched in partisan politics as demonstrated by his posting to social media: “I have seen some alarming reports that the Obama administration is giving illegal aliens one-way tickets to Alaska.”
    According to Parnell these children have been “set free in Alaska”. That sounds like he considers these kids to be like feral cats. Perhaps Mr. “Choose Respect” thinks animal control should be called instead of affording these kids the due process of law granted to them by bi-partisan congressional action regarding illegal aliens who are minor children.
    Parnell really does resent, and feel personally threatened, by those who don’t look like him, think like him, have income like him, or the same religious beliefs he does. Does Sean Parnell ever reflect on his own hypocrisy? For example, Parnell and his family have fully funded government health insurance. Parnell directly violated the Alaska Constitution (Article 2, Section 5) in 2010 when he created a job for a sitting legislator and nothing was done to him because his appointed Attorney General (Dan Sullivan) refused to act; however, these five kids are not to be allowed due process under law.
    We can do better……

  4. Twig

    The question is simple:: Will Republicans allow Mark Begich to select his opposition? He wants to run against Miller or Treadwell. Sullivan is the only candidate that can beat Begich. That’s why the democrats have spent $4m trying to destroy him.

  5. TJ

    Milton, a Begich/Treadwell General Election would be like watching the Miami Heat vs my kid’s 4th grade basketball team.

  6. Couch Potato

    Ha, I’m sure Treadwell loves this. This primary is essentially Dan Sullivan vs Put AK First. Love it. If Treadwell was a professional wrestler, his name would be “Collateral Damage.”

  7. Milton Friedman

    I agree with Mr. Hellenthal’s assessment. If you think the mailer from Sullivan was negative, just wait until you see a Treadwell vs Begich general election. The national democrats and Begich will pull all the stops in order to keep the seat.

  8. Jon K

    Dan spent a considerable amount of time trying to improve the permitting process. Because of his leadership on this issue, a permitting backlog that was in the thousands has been dramatically reduced. He also gave direction to staff at DNR to develop an omnibus bill to improve the permitting process. HB 77 was the result. Most of the provisions in the bill are unconstroversial. Several – limited who can appeal a DNR authorization / decision and restricting the ability of individuals to reserve water rights – garnered a lot of attention and controversy.

  9. Arctic Urbanophile

    Do you know what Sullivan’s role was on HB 77? I always thought it was the brainchild of Senator Giessel.

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