Buckle In…This Will Be A Long One
Are You Ready? — Alaska will finally have a one-stop-shop for campaign insiders, media, and political junkies to follow election night, all in real time!
Join us right here at midnightsunak.com to get up-to-the-minute information on election returns and campaigns, candidates, and political party activities, as well as in-depth analysis from the most experienced and connected panel in the state of Alaska. We’re calling it Election Live.
We’ll have an impressive lineup of contributors, all of whom have either run for office or worked at a strategic level on campaigns in Alaska, so we’ll be able to give you insights on the elections none of the mainstream media can match.
Sage Advice — AP Stylebook tweeted this out earlier this week. They are correct.
There are plenty of other legislators, and frankly staff too, who have served in uniform or been police or firemen, but the combat service shade for legislative vets really is the lead here.
Days until the Primary Election — 4
Days until the General Election — 88
What Is Duncan Doing — It was an interesting week for GCI President Ron Duncan. First, he and his deputy Greg Chapados’ names appeared on a list of donors to a group funded by labor and major lefty lawyer Robin Brena, Together For Alaska, to support what appears to be a labor-friendly roster of candidates and to go after labor’s enemies.
This has lead to some people raising their eyebrow because, for instance, Together For Alaska is supporting Luke Hopkins, while Duncan is said to be hosting a fundraiser on August 18th for his opponent Sen. John Coghill.
Word on the street is Duncan’s erratic fundraising has ticked off the good folks at the Alaska Oil and Gas Association (AOGA), who it’s said have made it clear to Duncan he has crossed a line and is no longer considered a friend of the oil industry. AOGA says it isn’t true, and while Duncan’s decisions are head scratching, they are his to make.
Don’t Forget About Us — With all the attention state legislative races are getting, people tend to forget the next round of Anchorage Assembly elections are just 8-months away. We hear Tom Begich’s campaign manager and former aide to Mayor Ethan Berkowitz, Felix Rivera is gearing up to run for the Midtown seat Assemblywoman Elvi-Grey Jackson will be vacating due to term limits.
Rivera previously ran as a Democrat for state senate against Sen. Kevin Meyer two years ago and lost by a wide margin.
Now running for a municipal seat without an entrenched incumbent in the race and presumably with the support of the Mayor’s office, Rivera could be a real contender for the seat.
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.
No Go — Seven day APOC reports show Boniface area candidate for state house Lisa Vaught raised and spent no money during the last reporting period. That gives solid backing to the rumor that Vaught has quit her primary match-up with fellow Republican Don Hadley.
Fun — In case you missed it, the new web app Alaska Political Rater is the most fun you are likely to have in Alaska politics this week. Check it out.
Oh, and don forget the FAQ page.
Fly Into The Sun — If you have morsels you’d like shared in this column, please email us at [email protected].
Eagle River Drama — We have confirmed reports that Eagle River house candidate Crystal Kennedy is running robocalls in her district telling people to vote for her and against incumbent Rep. Lora Reinbold.
Robo-calls themselves aren’t dramatic, but the interesting thing is who is voicing the ads — current Eagle River Republican legislators Sen. Anna MacKinnon and Rep. Dan Saddler. It is very rare to see sitting legislators lending their voices to oust their own party’s incumbent. It could make things kind of tense at community events and town halls if Reinbold gets re-elected.
Big Endorsement — Thursday Palmer are state house candidate Richard Best posted this to his Facebook page:
Sen. Huggins is pretty popular in the Mat-Su, even the parts he doesn’t directly represent. This is a nice pick-up for Best.
Party Discipline — According to a letter emailed to Alaska Republican Party officers this week, District 20 Chairman Ric Davidge has been suspended from that position until the primary election is over.
In an interview Thursday night, Davidge said the suspension came as a result of his sending an email out to dozens of people supporting Rep. Shelley Hughes in her primary race. Hughes is not endorsed by the party and has Republican competitors. According to rules, party officials are not allowed to advocate primary candidates in such circumstances. Davidge said he understood that he broke the rule and agrees with the punishment.
This appears to mark an earnest attempt by party leadership to enforce much stronger rules of conduct for party officials in primary races. We’ll see if it sticks.
Mailer Madness — Ok, we know what you want, so settle down. Here are some interesting mailers or graphics we’ve seen in various races.
Gattis Facebook Ad
Anti-Johnson Mailer 2 (Together For Alaska)
Election Night Fun — While you are checking in on our special Election LIve coverage on election night, you might want to wet your whistle at one of these election night events.
Lisa Murkowski Party — Our top recommendation for the place to be on election night. Why? Murkowski now has more campaign cash-on-hand than most small countries do, so that should absolutely translate into good catering. Also, there will be live music, if you happen to care about such things.
Democrat Party — Technically this is a fundraiser for Rep. Chris Tuck and Rep. Matt Claman, but in reality it is the Democrat’s big election night party. It’s being held at the IBEW HQ and if I know one thing about blue-collar workers it’s that they know how to use a grill. Instead they are doing a taco bar. Seriously? We’re not mad, just disappointed, union dudes. It looks like there will be free wine and beer, so it all works out.
Republican Party — Again, technically a State Senate Majority fundraiser, but in reality it’s the Alaska GOP’s main event on election night. If you are a loyal Republican, and can’t get into or won’t go to the Murkowski event, then this will do. Two words: cash bar. :(
Jeff-A-Palooza — For those who love karaoke and have an adventurous side, there is Jeff Landfield’s election night party at Asia Garden. It has the potential to be a really great party. Good night and good luck.
Mayor Dan’s McGinley’s Hangout— Mayor Dan Sullivan says he is offering an open invite for folks to make their way over to McGinley’s and watch the results roll in with him. It isn’t a formal event, just good people enjoying good brew and politics. McGinley’s has been a de facto Republican watch party location for years now. Frankly, there are worse ways to spend election night.