Blame Game — With yet another significant electoral win for progressives in Anchorage this week, the frustration among both elected Republicans and Party activists is starting to boil to the surface. Take this Facebook post by longtime Republican activist Rebecca Logan:
In case her unnamed attacks leave you confused, she is referring to Frank McQueary (vice-chair), Lori Davey (recruiter), Mark Schimscheimer (Democrat to run) and Randy Ruedrich (former Party chair).
You may disagree with Logan’s take on what may have lost the South Anchorage Assembly race for Republicans, and she ignores the fact that Republians lost across the board, but her question to those running for party leadership positions at the state convention is a fair one.
Midnight Sun On The Air!!!! — Master of Morning Radio Rick Rydell (AM 650 KENI) has asked us to come on every week and share Friday in the Sun with his audience. So listen for our inside scoop every Friday morning at 7:35.
Game Over — Word is that Rep. Kurt Olson (R-Kenai) has been letting people know he has decided not to run for re-election this fall. The news doesn’t come as a huge surprise. Rumors have been circulating for months he was done, which is why his district has already attracted two credible candidates in the Republican primary, Kenai City Manager Rick Koch and Soldotna Councilman Keith Baxter. There is also a very well-known conservative name who tells me he is strongly considering running as an Independent for the seat. This could be a race to watch, in both August and November.
Late To The Game — While traveling to Bethel this week for the Rasmuson Foundation’s release of their latest polling results on the fiscal crisis, Lt. Governor Byron Mallott ran into a bit of a paperwork snafu. It turns out that it was his birthday, which is great, but it also meant his drivers license expired that day. The LT had to take a break from the fiscal fight to dash over to the DMV in Bethel to get a new license. Is it at all ironic that his message while in Bethel was that lawmakers need to stop procrastinating and get their business taken care of “before it’s too late”?
Made It Into The Game — The annual tradition that is Legislative Skits was held this week, and the hit of the night was a video involving renowned blogger Casey Reynolds (that’s me) and an Incredible Hulk-morphing Sen. Bill Stoltze. (Word is that it was HILARIOUS.)
Post Fail — The Alaska Department of Revenue posted this press release to their website yesterday with the track changes still pending. If the Commissioner is quoted in a crossed-out section, did he really say it?
Winning The War — WIth only seven months until the election and 0 precincts reporting, we can definitively say Republican candidate Mike Gordon is ahead of incumbent Democrat Rep. Harriet Drummond in one crucial element of their Spenard area State House race, the (not really) all important sign war. These have begun to pop up in the last two days:
Hot Talk — Radio station KVNT this week announced they will be filling the 4-6 p.m. time slot recently vacated by Glen Biegel with newly re-elected Anchorage Assemblywoman Amy Demboski. Mrs. Demboski has been a regular caller, guest, and sometimes fill-in host on KENI, KFQD, and KBYR. Those are the talk stations that get ratings in Anchorage—KVNT doesn’t. Those stations also don’t tend to give their competitors free advertising with appearances on their air waves. If the radio ratings are in any way accurate, one could argue that Mrs. Demboski will actually get less coverage with a two-hour show on KVNT than with random appearances on the other stations.
It’s a tricky situation for news/talk stations; Mrs. Demboski is a legitimate “news-maker” as an Assemblywoman, and by fighting a liberal mayor and assembly, she will probably make more news than usual. Do they still put her on? The radio powers I’ve talked to say that on days she makes news she will still be allowed on their stations, but will have to promise not to mention her show or KVNT. That seems fair.
Straight Outta Anchorage — This week, Steve Lindbeck announced he is running against Congressman-for-all-Alaska Don Young. Early indications are that Lindbeck is taking a “pros-from-dover” approach to staffing his campaign rather than hire Alaskans with local knowledge; the campaign has confirmed one big exception to that: the campaign’s ad work will be done by big-time Democrat ad man Mark Putnam. In addition to the rest of his impressive body of work, Putnam is best known for “writing and producing Barack Obama’s 2008 election eve 30-minute television special that aired simultaneously on seven networks and was viewed by over 35 million people.”
The kicker? Putnam is an Anchorage kid, born and raised.
Will He Do It — The push is on to find a conservative, any conservative, to push Sen. Lisa Murkowski for re-election. One such effort is coming from former state legislator and current author of The Reagan Project Fritz Pettyjohn who I am told is actively recruiting former state legislator and known conservative/libertarian voice Dave Cuddy to run. Cuddy has already tilted at the senate windmill twice by challenging the late Sen. Ted Stevens in 1996 and 2008. Will he do it again?
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