Last night I wrote about Anchorage Mayor Dan Sullivan’s comments about union membership and slavery at the lieutenant governor’s forum on Monday sponsored by the Anchorage Chamber of Commerce. Below are a few more tidbits from the forum, which featured Democrats Alaska state Sen. Hollis French and Wasilla teacher Bob Williams on one side, and Republicans Sullivan and state Sen. Lesil McGuire on the other.
- Despite public opinion polls that show broad public support, all four candidates said they were against legalizing marijuana.
- French, Williams and McGuire oppose right-to-work legislation. Sullivan adamantly supports it.
- The two Dems, as expected, are for repealing the oil tax legislation passed in 2013. Both Republicans were against repeal.
- On prioritizing the three big projects: both McGuire and Sullivan put the large natural gasline first, the Knik Arm Bridge second and the Susitna dam last. French put the Susitna dam first, a bullet line second, and the Knik Arm Bridge last.
Best lines of the event:
- From Bob Williams about the Anchorage Legislative Offices building: “Never before have we seen such a disconnect between our values and our actions… When we’re talking about a legislative palace…spending $1 million for furniture, $100,000 to design a furniture theme. My dad was a logger: We can do a furniture theme for 10 bucks. But when it comes to education, we say we don’t have the money…”
- From Mayor Dan about where he sees the state in five years: “Lesil McGuire is back in the state Senate where she sponsors the Sullivan Teacher Initiative…President Rand Paul opens ANWR, armed with a Republican House and a Republican Senate….The Knik Arm Bridge is being built.” And the natural gas pipeline is under construction.
- From Sen. Hollis French on where he sees the state in five years unless there’s a change in leadership: “In five years, there will be three or four half-built projects when we run out of savings.”
- From Sen. Lesil McGuire on right-to-work legislation and the tension between Anchorage Mayor Dan Sullivan and the unions: “What we’ve seen at the local level — what’s happened — it’s been somewhat of a disaster here in Anchorage. When you go so far and start pushing almost a war, if you will, against the working men and women in this state.”
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