Only the Best and Brightest — Your benevolent blogger’s phone and Facebook blew up yesterday with news that diminutive recovering radio mouth Bernadette Wilson will be joining the honored ranks of the legislative staff corps.
I don’t know what the world record for most “WTF” texts received in a one-hour period is, but I’m pretty sure that the number of texts I received must mean that I now hold that record. Apparently Rep. Liz Vazquez has decided she needs whatever it is Wilson brings to the table, but not in Juneau.
I’m told Wilson will be working out of the Anchorage LIO. Seeing as how Wilson delighted in calling just about every legislator and staff member an idiot or moron specifically and by name on her show, I’m guessing Vazquez will not be the most popular kid in class for a while.
Young Republican Congrats — Last night the Anchorage Young Republicans got together to elect their new leadership. I’m told Americans For Prosperity-Alaska staffer Ryan Mckee was once again elected President and Alaska State Senate comms staffer Daniel McDonald will be Vice President. There to support the younglings were reps for Sen. Lisa Murkowski, Rep. Don Young, and candidate Mike Gordon as well as legislative candidates Chris Birch, Jennifer Johnston, Adam Crum and Jeff Landfield.
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.
Candidate Rumor 1 — For some time the rumor has been floating that the father of Bree’s Law Butch Moore is being encouraged and is considering a run for Sen. Charlie Huggins Mat-Su Valley State Senate seat. What isn’t clear is if he is one of those who believe Huggins won’t be running for re-election, or if he is considering running against the incumbent himself.
Candidate Rumor 2 — Among those who could potentially run for the vacant Senate post created by the announced retirement of Chugiak/Mat-Su workhorse Sen. Bill Stolze is current Rep. Mark Neuman staffer Rex Shattuck. I’m hearing he’s made a few public statements in the district that he is considering such a run. He would join the already-declared Rep. Shelley Hughes in the Republican primary.
Candidate Rumor 3 — Here in Anchorage a rumor is floating that one of Stoltze’s current staffer may take a stab at running for the Legislature. Daniel George, who has served as President of the Mountain View Community Council for some time, is said to be exploring a run against Democrat Rep. Geran Tarr. That is a tough district for any Republican to win, so there is a decent chance George goes the “Independent route” that is all the rage these days.
Early Vote — Later today the State House is suppose to take up oil and gas tax credits bill HB 247. It’s been widely reported that two non-leadership based factions of the Republican caucus led by Rep. Tammy Wilson and Rep. Paul Seaton have come together to forge a compromise that they believe will have the support of 21 votes in the House and the Senate will agree to.
Since they can’t get the bill on the floor without leadership support, look for the group to offer their idea as an amendment to HB 247.
Legislature watchers say they will be closely watching how the majority caucus members vote on that amendment. It is seen by many as a proxy vote for next year’s house leadership. The vote will essentially test how many current caucus members would support a leader from the current leadership such as Rep. Craig Johnson vs. some new blood.
Constant Motion — Downtown Assembly candidate Chris Constant’s campaign appears to be picking up steam, and it’s a good thing, as voting starts in only ten months.
Constant is having a big shindig on May 21st at the home of Pam Tesche hosted by some pretty good Dem names such as Eric Croft, Leslie Ridle, and lobbyist Paul Fuhs.
Everyone is still waiting on Sheila Selkregg to decide if she is running, but the event and the names attached show Constant is making real progress in his race.
Senate L Poll — After last week’s blurb about a Hayes Poll floating around the Senate District L race, everyone wanted to know more, so here is what I’ve heard: I haven’t been able to nail down who exactly paid for the poll, but several sources have who have seen the results say they were shocked to see Jeff Landfield ahead of Natasha Von Imhof. Senator Jeff Landfield… Just let that sink in for a minute.
Dem Drama — The Alaska Democratic Party is having their convention starting today, and you can follow the blow-by-blow by following the Midnight Sun on Twitter @midnight_sun_sun.
There are really too many potential dramas to cover in this column, but here are just a few of the points we will be following:
- Here is the official draft of the convention agenda. It’s worth noting that this agenda has to be adopted by convention goers, so if Bernie Sanders supporters really, really want to disrupt things, that adoption motion will be the first real sign of it.
- DNC Chairwoman Rep. Debbie-Wasserman-Schultz will be the keynote speaker on Saturday night at 8 p.m. We’ll be watching to see how many of delegates stick around to hear her, how many protest her, and how many leave to go to another event that Bernie Sanders supporters have put together. Organizers of that event are promising a Skype-in by Bernie’s wife, Jane, and are even teasing that the Bern himself may join the group, too.
- On Saturday at about 11 a.m., the Dems statewide candidates are slated to address the convention. That, of course, includes Congressional candidate Steve Lindbeck and U.S. Senate candidate Margaret Stock. Hey, wait–isn’t Stock a super party-hating non-partisan like her campaign materials say she is? So why is she speaking at the Dem convention? (Good question, Me.)
- The Presidential fan-out where we will find out once and for all exactly how many delegates Hillary and Bernie get and who those will be will happen Saturday at 1 p.m.
- Other items that may prove interesting are the possible reform or elimination of the use of caucusing in selecting the presidential delegates, a review of Obama’s trip to Alaska, and election of state party officers.
Follow it all @midnight_sun_ak
Fly Into The Sun — If you have morsels you’d like shared in this column please email me at [email protected].
Some Upcoming Events You Can Find On Our Political Calendar —
Who will talk to Rep Vasquez now that her staff is dating the minority leader? Didn’t Bernadette also coin the phrase Taj-MaHawker for the building she will be working in?
So hard to find these tidbits with Alaska Ear gone. I miss her.