Can I Help You – Congrats to Sharon Lane, who is Mayor Ethan Berkowitz’ new personal assistant/scheduler.
Goldberg — It was an interesting week for Alaska Republican Party Chairman Peter Goldberg. It began with a scathing email by Mat-Su Valley activist Aaron Downing, who feels Goldberg’s administration of the upcoming Presidential Preference Poll (Primary) has been somewhat lacking. A loyal reader, who is among those unimpressed with the Chairman’s work on the project, sent me a copy of the email exchange where Goldberg is chastised:
“All your present bluster will not resolve the problem. You created the mess now either fix it or get out of the way and let others fix it. This is the most important election of our lifetimes, we do not need your continued incompetence and micro management.”
It’s possible that such sentiment among the party faithful played into Goldberg’s announcement this week stating that he will not be seeking re-election as Chairman at the party’s convention this spring. In an email to party members sent on the night of Wednesday, February 17th, Goldberg got straight to the point:
“I will not be running again for state Chairman. I came to this decision many months ago. It has not been precipitated by any event, personality or problem with the Alaska Republican Party.”
Of course, there is no reason for him to convey so emphatically that the decision isn’t the result of some “event,” “personality,” or “problem,” unless that is what people are saying. Right?
Goldberg goes on to announce he will be running for National Committeeman, a position on the Republican National Committee ably manned for many years now by former Alaska State Senator Ralph Seekins of Fairbanks. No word yet if Ralph plans on retaining the spot, or if he’ll happily settle down slinging Fords and spending time with his grandchildren in the Golden Heart City.
From The Assembly Races — Southside candidate John Weddleton, ever trying to prove to us at TMS that he is more than just “the progressive in the race,” has scored a fundraiser hosted by several Anchorage home builders. That’s a pretty good get, signaling to the rest of us that businesses and developers are comfortable with him making rules for them. The whole thing is still on the QT right now, but we’ll post an invite to our political calendar when we see it.
Karma Chameleon — It just feels like the embryonic campaign of “Who-Knows-What-She-Is” U.S. Senate candidate Margaret Stock is going to be the gift that keeps on giving. We first reported all the way back in December that she would be running, and rumors at the time, dating all the way back to that same December, pre-supposed she would be aligned with the Democrats. This prompted Stock to lash out at us here at TMS, saying that she “first heard it, when I read it.” We must be quite the prognosticators, because within a few short weeks Ms. Stock went from never hearing such a thing to then declaring her candidacy.
Now we are hearing all kinds of things. It would seem that Ms. Stock has been meeting with bigtime Democrat pollsters, consultants, and campaign vendors back in Washington D.C. She’s rumored to have hired an aide to a national Democratic presidential campaign to run her own effort, and even has Alaska Democratic Party lead dog Kay Brown boasting of an alliance with her.
Up until now, I’ve given Ms. Stock the full benefit of the doubt, as all of these things could be a combination of rumor, wishful thinking, and political projection. But here is something that stands out: I’m hearing from reliable sources that Ms. Stock is telling key supporters she will file a legal challenge to the Lt. Governor’s decision to reject the Alaska Democratic Party’s move to allow Independents to run in their primary.
If she does file the legal challenge, her fate is sealed: she is a Democratic candidate. Period. She can save herself all the Harvard-educated rhetorical parsing or West Point-drilled stratagem. She could miraculously bring Machiavelli back from the dead to serve as her right-hand man. It won’t help. To every single Alaskan with a brain, she will be a Democrat.
Say It Ain’t So, Joe — News out of the political radio world tells us that Ã¼ber conservative and former U.S. Senate Republican nominee Joe Miller has decided not to renew his contract to host a show on radio station KOAN 1080 AM / 95.5 FM. The most common response to this news so far has been, “Joe has a radio show?” Yup, he started doing it just over a year ago. Why is he leaving? The most prominent scuttlebutt gives us the idea that having a talk program on an obscure radio station doesn’t bring either the relevance or revenue that Joe thinks he deserves for the time he puts in. There is always the tantalizing possibility, however, that Joe is leaving because he couldn’t do the radio show and run against Lisa Murkowski or Don Young at the same time… :)
The Impossible Replacement — The process for replacing the late Alaska State House Rep. Max Gruenberg is underway. Names we hear being floated around East Anchorage as possible replacements? Minority Leader Chris Tuck aide Kendra Kloster is one. Another name that crops up is current Salvation Army and former UAA Development Director Ivy Spohnholz. ISER economist Gunnar Knapp could also be a contender. Another name? Gruenberg’s widow, Kayla Epstein.
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