What would you ask the gov. and lieutenant gov. candidates?

Dan Fagan and I will be moderating a governor’s and lieutenant governor’s  forum sponsored by the Mat-Su Business Alliance. I understand that the event is sold out, but if you want to come, you might want to call to make sure. Mostly, Fagan and I will be wandering around with mics, taking questions from the audience. However, I’ll have a chance to ask at least one or two questions. I’ve got a few, but I’m curious about you all. If you had one question for any of the four candidates, what would it be?


33 thoughts on “What would you ask the gov. and lieutenant gov. candidates?

  1. Valley Girl

    Interesting list of questions. Too bad Fagan is such a horrible moderator and barely gave you a chance to get a word in. Do yourself a favor and don’t make the mistake of co-moderating with this blow hard. It’s time for him to go away again. This time forever.

  2. Ralph

    Walker has never supported an income tax and what a horrendously false accusation the outside interests for Parnell are spewing to Akaskans. We are smarter than that. And how embarrassing to support a candidate that has supporters willing to do such a thing. I know Alasksans don’t like people telling them lies. It’s amazing how many lies you can pay for with $1.3 million.

  3. Anonymous

    One of the primary duties of the Lt. Gov is to oversee the elections process. Rep. Johansen introduced HB 36 several years ago to make the ballot initiative process more reigorous. The bill became law. The legislative record includes a desire for the administration to take a position on initiatives and the statewide hearing process was created for the State to convey that position. Unfortunately, the Parnell administration has not allowed the State to take a position and the hearings have essentially becom campaign opportunities.
    I guess the questions would be: what improvements do you think should be made to the ballot initiative process to ensure that the system isn’t abused and to make sure that reisdents are able to get information from the State on how measures would be implemented?

  4. Garand Fellow

    The Walker-Mallot ticket, with the two other candidates stepping aside, Byron Mallot stepping into the lower slot after he had won the Democratic primary, etc. was in no small part engineered by AFLCIO. I would like to know of any examples of Walker or Mallot choosing to employ union companies over nonunion outfits, and how many union workers were employed by those decisions and for how long? Did it occur to Byron Mallot to hire union logging contractors for the billions of board feet of Sealaska Corp. and village corporation timber logged and why did he not hire a single one?

    Who has employed more union workers in their careers; Sean Parnell and Dan Sullivan, or Bill Walker and Byron Mallot?

  5. Josh W.

    Amanda –
    Ask Bill Walker how he could possibly give someone as unethical as Nancy Dahlstrom a job in his administration.
    She was obviously part of the problem with the Alaska Guard. Now, in the final hours of the campaign she has come forward to help Walker. This woman is dumb. She has made herself “unemployable” in state government and anywhere else that ethics are required. It always amazes me how low will someone go to get their name in the paper. I don’t like Parnell, but, Walker shouldn’t be lining up with Parnell’s team of rats that now want jobs in a Walker administration.

  6. Mark Springer

    Sam P-
    You know what, if you had heard Byron’s oratory before the AFN Convention last week you would have thought better before asking your question.
    I watched Messrs. Mallot and Walker when they met with us at the Alaska Municipal League summer conference. The intellectual and policy harmony between both men was highly evident.
    State income tax? I still rue Dick Randolph’s name in the same breath as Edward Teller.

  7. Sam P.

    For Walker: Does he still support starting a state income tax, as he wrote in a letter to the editor (ADN) a few years ago, and if we had followed his advice, how does he believe our economy would be now?

    For Mallott: Is he as sharp as he used to be? Persistent rumors that he is easily confused due to onset of a condition related to his age. I am not sure how to ask this question, but no one wants to get near it — does he have dementia?

  8. Pat Race

    Gov – What is something you wish you had done differently during this campaign?

    Lt. Gov – Would you support an online referendum process. Perhaps building on the PFD/myalaska system to verify identity?

  9. Mike Opple

    Lynn – You mad, bro? It’s clear the Dahlstrom appointment was resolved appropriately. With that said, Lynn, how about you go listen to another Bill Walker speech, but don’t listen too closely – selectively listen only -otherwise you’ll realize Walker likes it both ways, pandering for power. God bless the sheeple.

  10. Lynn Willis

    That is exactly what transpired and it should concern you and every Alaskan. I appreciate that the drafters of our State Constitution went to this effort to stop the potential undue influence of the Executive Branch (or others) over the Legislative Branch by being able to offer sitting legislators positions or other rewards. When the Governor can create a high salary state job for my legislator I, as a constituent, cannot compete with that influence. I would hope you can see the wisdom in that.

  11. Fig

    Lots of comments here about the ANG and Nancy Dahlstrom. Everyone knows that Nancy is a self promoter and that she’s looking for a job. She probably made a deal with the Walker people that if she came out trashing the administration, that they’d give her a job. I don’t even think for one minute that Walker would be sleezy enough to give Dahlstrom a job. Think about it. Where was her integrity? Why wasn’t she a whistle blower? She is a dirty, sleezy politician of the worst kind. She was labor’s girl in Juneau. She had their support. She’s just stepping off the curb for them one more time. How terrible.

  12. Jon K

    once again, “my gosh.” Please stop mischaracterizing what transpired. You are better than this. I hope. But maybe not.

  13. Lynn Willis

    I’ m spreading falsehoods? The practice was “likely prohibited”? Well, if that is true than why didn’t Governor “I took an oath to uphold the Constitution” fight to keep his newest employee? What a great guy to have as a boss!
    The practice is clearly prohibited if you can read and understand English; especially in the Dahlstrom hire. I have the opinion by Parnell’s hand picked Attorney General and it is as vague as your response. You didn’t mention that Senator Gene Therriault also resigned yet his hiring was much more “legal” in the sense that the dates of his resignation and hiring aligned on the paperwork. You might have an argument with Senator Therriault’s Energy Advisor position because he legally didn’t accept his job until after he resigned yet he went under the bus with Dahlstrom also.
    The operative question Jon is why did both Therriault and Dahlstrom resign if Parnell’s actions were legal and ethical? Also, why hasn’t Parnell created jobs for any more sitting legislators if this is an acceptable, legal and ethical practice? Or is it because Parnell’s actions were arguably illegal, unethical, and certainly embarrassing. So you would agree with me that Parnell is so inept as a lawyer that he couldn’t read the prohibition in the State Constitution about creating a job for a sitting legislator and not question his authority to do so ? This wasn’t some complex boilerplate statute or regulation – this was the Constitution of the State of Alaska.
    Not agreeing with you is not a falsehood. Also,I know quite a lot about the State Personal Board actions regarding this episode that never made the press.

  14. Anonymous

    Or perhaps Ms. Dahlstrom is angling for a job in the event Walker wins and remembering things differently than they may have actually happened.

  15. Exactly Right Straightlaced

    Amanda has posted many times about how poorly the administration has handled this scandal….anyway, Amanda is getting a strong following because she criticizes those that need to be criticized and she gives kudos to those that deserve kudos regardless of party affiliation. She also sees the humanity in most politicians – which can be hard to do – and her reporting benefits because of it. Thanks Amanda for continuing to provide us with accurate, thoughtful, and factual information. Much appreciated.

  16. Straitlaced Radical

    This comment proves that you don’t read very closely. If you want one-sided, agenda-driven drivel that may or may not be based on fact, stick to reading ADN. Most of the rest of us appreciate what we find on this blog.

  17. Shattered

    I don’t think she posts anything about Sean’s mishandling of the Alaska National Guard scandal. In fact, she rarely posts anything that shows him in a bad light. You’ll have to go to the Newsminer or ADN for anything on that.

    She will post stories about Sean’s wife being a really great lady, therefore we should vote for him. And statements from Sean and his staff justifying his mishandling of whatever his latest blunder may be. But not a lot of critical thinking goes into the Sean stories. Whatever Sean says must be true. Sean is a swell guy and would never mislead, stonewall (i.e. the release of public records that may show how incompetent and dishonest he and his staff are) or blame others for his lack if fitness for the position.

    Sorry Amanda. But there seems to be a lack of equity in your stories related to the gubernatorial race. There are three pretty big stories related to the ANG scandal right now at ADN (and have been many in the recent past) and they get no mention here. Or how about Balash and the Parnell Campaign suggesting that Walker used the Port Authority for great personal gain. Something that the Port Authority says never happened. When they were called on their baseless accusations, their response was “Sorry, my bad.” But at that point many are sure to have only heard the accusations and not the residence of the false accusation. Hard to un-ring the bell.

    Sean good. Walker bad.

    Just saying.

  18. Jon k

    Lynn – to take a line from Walker, “my gosh.” You are wrong. Please stop spreading falsehoods. We have discussed this issue repeatedly. I have shared with you the AG opinion that Dan issued in 2010. As a result of this opinion, Dalhstrom resigned. When Dan gave Parnell the opinion, Parnell thanked him for doing what he thought was right.

    Here is some more backstory: the governor’s office asked an AAG if it could offer a job to a legislator. (It is very common for the governor’s office to consult AAGs without the AG’s knowledge.) The AAG did some research and concluded that he could because there had been a longstanding practice of governors, including jay Hammond of hiring legislators, along with a few AG Opinions that suggested that the practice did not violate the constitution. The hire received some press, so Dan studied the matter and issued an opinion explaining that the Alaska constitution likely prohibited the practice. Shortly thereafter Dahlstrom resigned.

    Do I really need to send you the opinion again? What will it do to get you to stop spreading falsehoods?

  19. Lynn Willis

    Yes that brought back memories of the original Dahlstrom appointment. Jill Burke and Richard Mauer wrongly described the circumstances that caused Dahlstrom to leave her new position as “military advisor” in 2010 when they wrote: “Dahlstrom was forced to resign because the Constitution barred her from jumping from the legislature to the administration”. She didn’t resign. She was thrown under the bus to cover the action of Governor Parnell when he was caught violating the State Constitution; specifically Article 2 (The Legislature) Section 5 (Disqualifications) which includes this sentence:

    “…..During the term for which elected; and for one year thereafter, no legislator may be nominated, elected, or appointed to any other office or position of profit which has been created, or the salary of emoluments of which have been increased while he was a member:..”.

    Governor Parnell illegally created a state job for a sitting legislator (the position had never existed before) yet was never held accountable for that action. Dahlstrom was the Chair of House Rules – a position described as the “Gate Keeper” for legislative action. Having that legislator on the side of the Administration would be a true benefit for the Governor’s political efforts. Governor Parnell had done the same thing for Senator Gene Therriault of Fairbanks earlier but had masked that effort by ensuring Therriault officially resigned before he accepted the position. They didn’t do that with Dahlstrom who openly announced she was leaving the legislature to accept her new job.
    Governor Parnell’s appoint Attorney General (Dan Sullivan) refused to pursue the issue and Dahlstrom resigned only to surface a couple of years later apparently in the same job she was forced to leave. This was right after the Polar Pen scandal where Bill Allen was caught bribing legislators and I thought the actions of the Governor looked very bad and more should have happened to the Governor. Yet nothing was done and that is exactly what can happen when the Attorney General is appointed by the Governor. I haven’t respected Governor Parnell since that episode and he has given my plenty of additional reasons to feel that way.

  20. Lynn Willis

    My single question (which was the rule Jon) for all of them:
    “What lessons should we have learned from the oil price decline in the 80s that might have lessened the impact of declining oil prices currently?”

  21. AG

    Something along the lines of “The best and the brightest regardless of their political affiliation” He also said in the last debate that he hasn’t talked to anyone about it yet but is waiting until he’s elected to wait and see, just like everything else.

  22. Dennis W.

    Two questions for Mallott:

    Was Alice Rogoff present at any of the “unity” ticket meetings?

    Shouldn’t Alice Rogoff disclose her affiliation with the “unity” ticket?

  23. AH HA

    Amanda, have you seen the piece in the Dispatch by Jill Burke and Richard Mauer regarding Nancy Dahlstrom?

    This guard thing seems to keep getting worse and worse.

  24. AH HA

    Amanda, I’ve been wanting a chance to have Byron Mallott clarify a comment he made at AFN, I think it was 2010? Mallott say’s “Very conservative ideologies scare the hell out of us, because of our circumstance,” and I have always wondered exactly what circumstance he was referring to.

    Here is the Quote as it was reported at that time:

    A draft resolution proposed by the board at this week’s convention at the Dena’ina Center in Anchorage calls on voters, and Alaska Native voters in particular, to switch their registrations to “undeclared.”
    Undeclared voters can vote for either a Democrat or a Republican in primary elections, the board argues, “and thereby vote for the candidates that most support their views and standings on the issues.”
    Former AFN President Byron Mallott said he supports the proposal, which would allow voters to participate in the closed Republican primaries which typically favor more conservative candidates.
    “Very conservative ideologies scare the hell out of us, because of our circumstance,” Mallott said, emphasizing that he was speaking for himself and not all Alaska Natives. “Because of the range of issues that affect us … I hope it passes with a huge vote.”

  25. Jon K

    For Walker:

    1) what specific information is being kept from the public that prevents you from evaluating the AK LNG project?

    2) if you are opposed to the AK LNG bc of the confidentiality provisions, will you seek to modify the contracts and/or SB 138?

    3) if the biggest impediment to AK LNG getting to FID is competition with cheaper gas coming from projects in Canada, Australia, Russia, east africa and the Gulf of Mexico, what can we do to be reduce costs and beat our competition?

    4) you say that you brought the market to Alaska in 2012 – what price were they willing to pay for our gas? How could we offer to sell the gas if we didn’t know the cost to construct the project and if we didn’t have permits?

    5) how do we get the greatest value for our gas?

    6) who will lead your transition team?

    7) your law firm is involved in a lot of litigation with the state where tens of millions of dollars are at stake. How will you administration ensure that all parties involved in the litigation get a fair hearing? Will you seek to settle any of these cases – in particular Point Thomson and TAPS valuation disputes?

    8) during the Ketchikan debate you said you supported the Borough’s lawsuit against the state which seeks to have the state pay for education. Will you settle this case? What will this add to the deficit?

    For both:

    1) mandatory spending is the biggest driver of our deficits. What can be done to bend the cost curve on health care and pensions?

    2) given our deficits, will you support looking for additional revenue sources to fund state government?

    3) do we get our “fair share”‘ of revenue from mining and seafood?

    4) Should the EPA dictate land use decisions on state lands? If not, what can be done to stop the EPA from exercising its 404(c) veto authority?

    For Parnell

    1) how many entities undertook independent investigations into the Nat Guard between 2012 and 2014? What did they find?

    2) why were you so trusting of Katkus despite the repeated claims of abuse and corruption?

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