Loose Lips: Establishment finds its West Anchorage candidate, drafting Palin, Gattis nabs Bickford


  • Department of Revenue legislative liaison Alicia Egan is no longer working for Commissioner Angela Rodell. No word on where she went.
  • The Tea Party Leadership Fund has reported another $10,000 online media buy to encourage Sarah Palin to run in the upcoming Senate race. The group also spent $10,000 in April on its draft Palin campaign. Washington D.C. lawyer Dan Backer is the treasurer of the group, which as of February has raised $3.8 million this election cycle. Backer is also one of the lawyers behind the most recent Supreme Court decision to strike down a slate of campaign finance restrictions. Earlier this year the group sent out an email blast, claiming that Palin “has a better grasp on world politics, and she knows what it means to cherish and protect our American freedoms far better than THE MAN WHO IS SUPPOSED TO BE LEADING THE FREE WORLD.” What the group didn’t say: “SHE’S HAVING FUN WITH REALITY TV AND HAS A GREAT GIG RAISING MONEY FOR HER PAC WHICH MOSTLY PAYS HER TO RAISE MORE FUNDS FOR HER PAC. RUN FOR SENATE? WHY?”

Upcoming Events:

      1. May 22: 4:30 p.m. – 7 p.m. Brats, beans, and beer for the Alaska Dems at the home of Allison Mendel and Marge Kaiser, 938 David Place at West. 10th Ave
      2. May 24: 10:00 am – 3:30 pm. Alaska Republican Assembly Freedom Fair and Convention, Menard Sports Center, Wasilla. Featured speakers include: Arizona’s Sheriff Mack, Senator Ted Cruz’s father Rafael and Nevada’s Sharron Angle. Glen Biegel will serve as Master of Ceremonies. Amanda Coyne will be taking notes.
      3. May 26: 2:00 – 4:00 pm. Dave Talerico for state House ‘Meet and Greet’ at the Denali park Cafe, Cantwell.
      4. May 31:  5:00 – 8:00 pm. Summer picnic and pig roast for Gov. Sean Parnell, sponsored by the Capital City Republican Women at the home of Steve and Lisa Messerschmidt, Lena Cove in Juneau.
      5. June 8:  12:00 – 4:00 pm. Union Solidarity Picnic, Anchorage Park Strip.
  • Rep. Mark Nueman aide, Cathy Tilton, is expected to file any day for Rep. Bill Stoltze’s House seat. Word is that Beth Fread, a Palmer realtor and past president of the Valley Republican Womens’ Club, has agreed to be her campaign manager.
  • Eagle River native and Nome gold miner Andrew C. Lee has filed a letter of intent to run for lite gov. as a Libertarian. Lee is perhaps best known in reality TV circles for building the gold dredge called “The Edge,” which was featured in season 2 and 3 of Bering Sea Gold.
  • Rep. Lynn Gattis’ campaign has contracted with the adorable, smart Dani Bickford, who has the most adorable baby ever, to help coordinate campaign fundraising.
  • Palmer Mayor DeLena Johnson has hired Anchorage-based political consultant and pollster Marc Hellenthal to direct her campaign bid for the open Valley Senate seat. She’s running against Rep. Bill Stoltze, who’s hired Hackney & Hackney to work his campaign. Before it’s over, expect some bruises among all involved.
  • Matt Fagnani, who is no stranger to Alaska’s business community, has filed a letter of intent to run for Rep. Lindsey Holmes’s seat in West Anchorage. Holmes announced that she’s stepping down to work back in the private sector. I’m told that she endorsed Fagnani, but she hasn’t returned calls to confirm. As of March, Fagnani was the executive director of Alaska Process Industry Careers Consortium and previously the vice president of business development at the Pebble Partnership. He’s the “establishment” candidate. Anand Dubey, who is also running in the GOP primary, doesn’t have much establishment support, particularly not that of Randy Ruedrich. However, Dubey has been gathering “grassroots support” which in Republican circles has become code for “tea party support” which has become code for “people who don’t wear ties to work.” One of the two will face Democrat Matt Claman in the general.

Contact Amanda Coyne at amandamcoyne@yahoo.com


13 thoughts on “Loose Lips: Establishment finds its West Anchorage candidate, drafting Palin, Gattis nabs Bickford

  1. Super Voter

    Are these the same Palmer council people Bill Stoltze has made butts of his derision in the past, if I am not mistaken Bill has endorsed, groomed and raised funds for Mayor Johnson? I also believe he was the one that encouraged her to enter this race, I’ve heard numerous people comment that she has been out in the neighborhoods talking to voters, and everyday I see more yard signs for her! Maybe Bill can buy the election with all the State dollars he has doled out to his friends, Mr. Kiethley has it right Bill is a RINO when it comes to the fiscal issues, he never saw a state dollar he didn’t like to spend.

  2. Valley Voter

    It seems to me Bill Stoltze’s view from his high horse hasn’t been too clear; he hasn’t made as many friends in the valley as he likes to think. Few people will be surprised when Delena wins by a landslide.

  3. Shame on you

    Yeah! it’s called base-line budgeting. They PRETEND to cut the intended increases on the budget, without really cutting anything. For example you take a budget of $100 million and you have potential increases of $10 million, and then you announce to the public you’re cutting $5 million on this $110 million. Meanwhile with the fake budget cut, you have an increase of $5 million on the baseline of $100 million, taking the budget to $105 million. While in reality, the budget cut should have been $95 million, not the announced $105 million. In Actuality with this math you have a $10 million increase instead of the $5 million I pointed to earlier. So in other words, base line budgeting is slick, deceptive and people fall for it every time. Base line budgeting is the reason you see HUGE deficits all over the place and bloated budgets to boot.

  4. Lynn Willis

    You are so correct to vote for the person. These same “Establishment R” legislators complain about Medicade, Education, and State Pension funding consuming the entire state budget just about the time the serious cash calls for the AKLNG gas pipe line project become due. I would offer an equally as scary forecast as that from ISER. That is the State Department of Revenue projection of the AKLNG project obligations vs. GFUR (General Fund Unrestricted Revenue) Forecast. http://dor.alaska.gov/Portals/5/Docs/LNGDOCS/031014%20CORRETED%20Revenue%20and%20Debt%20Capacity%20Supplemental%20for%20Senate%20Finance%20March%2010%202014%20Corrected.pdf
    Parnell is now claiming that after the largest state budget in history was followed the second largest state budget in history he “cut spending”! We can do better…….

  5. Anonymous

    Running against Stoltze was her first mistake, hiring Hellenthal was her second. Doesn’t look good for DeLena.

  6. Lynn Willis

    Perhaps the Tea Party folks already spent $10,000 and want to offer Sarah another $10,000 (and perhaps a one way ticket) simply to return her to Alaska and be out of their lives forever also.
    Is this “Hackney and Hackney” employed by Bill Stoltze the same firm that demonized the Pebble Mine project for a fee? So is their a politician anywhere who can stand on his or her own two feet, speak for themselves, have the courage to not wait for polling data to state an opinion, and then not require a false image of the themselves to be created by some public relations agency?

  7. Brad Keithley

    On your last bullet it appears to be fair to say that “Establishment” R also is a synonym for “spend it until its all gone” R. The last Legislature — with dominant R majorities in both bodies — passed and the Governor appears to be poised to approve budgets containing the two largest deficits in Alaska’s history and in just two years drained $6 billion of the $17 billion the state held in fiscal reserves when they walked in the door. You want to talk about something that scares off resource investors, its staring at what ISER has called an “economic collapse” in state fiscal policy just about the time they anticipate their investments to begin paying off. Oddly enough, the Alaska “Establishment” R’s have turned into the biggest threat to long-term investment Alaska is facing today. Its time to vote for the person, not the party.

  8. KML

    I am so uniimpressed with Sara Palin. She fooled me once and I voted for her when she ran for governor. Now we know her and niw we wouldn’t vote for her.

  9. Turkey Red Fan

    I read the comment by Andy on the legislative races. He is correct to think that Valley incumbents will do well. He’s wrong to think that Stoltze’s opposition to the Hollywood Film Tax Credit hurting him in his district. To that, I can confiidently say, “nope, not at all”.
    Stoltze will do extremely well in this race. Here’s my analysis: Stoltze has for years done extremely well in the southern part of the senate district which is his House seat. Here he consistently got 70%+ of the vote House district in the senayte district, he has worked hard to support Palmer, the Mat-Su Miners and our local schhols and sports programs. He is known in the community and well-liked. For Johnson to be successful,she would have to get 70%+ from this House district and that just isn’t happening. From talking to Palmer city council members, I feel comfortable saying that a majority of them support Stoltze. He will be my next senator.

  10. Andy

    Either Matt will do a good job in West Anchorage. Would think out in Valley the incumbents retain their seats, like Gattis. Don’t know Tilton. The Palmer mayor has been working it even here in Anchorage and the people in film world don’t like Stoltz so presuming his help has in-house resources unless people in freelance don’t care about film tax credits. Wonder if Dave Dittman is still with Dittman or completely gone – used him for business survey long ago.

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