Democrats Take Aim At Munoz


Growing public outrage at Juneau Rep. Cathy Munoz’ decision to send letters of support for two defendants in child sex abuse cases could jeopardize her once seemingly inevitable re-election bid.

According to the Juneau Empire:

“Rep. Cathy Muñoz, and several others in Southeast Alaska, have sent letters to Juneau Superior Court Judge Philip Pallenberg, asking him to consider a lighter sentence for Thomas Jack Jr.”

“Tom’s conviction has had a profound impact on me. There have been times when I laid awake at night unable to sleep concerned over the length of his sentence and the cold reality that he may never see freedom again,” Muñoz wrote to Pallenberg, according to a copy of the letter. “He is not a violent person, and I believe he would respond well to rehabilitation.”

Alaska Democrats, feeling a public backlash again Munoz and seeing an opening for Democrat challenger Justin Parish, sent out this statement this morning:

ANCHORAGE: Alaska Democratic Party Chair Casey Steinau released the following statement in response to revelations that Representative Cathy Munoz wrote letters on behalf of the defendants in two child sex abuse cases:

Rep. Cathy Munoz

Rep. Cathy Munoz

“Representative Munoz’s decision to ignore the victims of abuse while protecting those responsible is wholly unacceptable. It’s hard to imagine a greater evil than hurting a child. Sex crimes are especially heinous and haunt children for a lifetime. Elected officials like Munoz should never write letters like these during sentencing, regardless of the letterhead used or how close she is to the offenders. Alaska has a problem with child abuse and sexual assault. Her choice to dedicate energy and resources to protect someone convicted on eight felony counts of child endangerment and a dangerous child molester is a manifestation of the serious problem in Juneau today. Munoz had her chance to tell her side of the story and her defense indicates she does not understand the seriousness of the situation. Unfortunately, this is not the first time she exercised the wrong judgment.”

Munoz won re-election two years ago by a wide 62%-37% margin over Democrat George McGuan. Until now, it appeared she would once again sail smoothly to another win.

Last week seven of Munoz’ colleagues in the House majority caucus were defeated in their primary elections in what many believe to be an anti-incumbent wave. If that is the case, Munoz, with this issue hanging around her neck, could be in trouble.

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5 Comments on "Democrats Take Aim At Munoz"

  1. It is amazing to me that any elected official of any party would use his or her position to ask for leniency for convicted child abusers. Cathy Munoz did this not once but twice, including using official stationery in one case- in a state that leads the nation in sexual abuse, including abuse of children as in the two cases Rep.Munoz tried to intervene. Appallingly, she said absolutely nothing about the young victims.

    Cathy Munoz’s position on child sexual abuse can simply be boiled down to this: “If you are my friend or go to my church, I will support coddling by the justice system if you molest young children and get convicted.”

    Cathy Munoz’s participation, if any, in past “Choose Respect” activities was apparently for show, as it is clear that she really has respect for the criminals. For the victims, not so much.

    The Juneau paper had a great editorial on Rep. Munoz’s “bizarre” behavior.

    Cathy Munoz say that she lay awake at night concerned about the long sentences that convicted child abusers had received. Me, I lay awake at night concerned about the children, and the impacts of such horrendous crimes on the young victims for the rest of their lives.

    The people of Juneau need to ask themselves before they vote: “If my child was sexually abused, would I expect elected officials like my state representative to request leniency for the perpetrator of this horrendous crime, or to support the victim?”

  2. I think she also spent last session trying to reduce the age of consent to 12 years old. None of the media outlets have picked up on this story… not sure why.

    • That’s a pretty serious allegation given the context, do you have a source? seems like that would be in BASIS somewhere.

      • It won’t be in basis – the amendment was never introduced. This is word of mouth (rumors) from a former aide of hers.

        Another Muñoz thing that SHOULD be in BASIS:
        Munoz introduced a bill this year (HB 334) in regards to domestic violence & custody cases– essentially the bill would have made it so protective orders could not be used in custody cases as evidence. ANDVSA was against the bill (she never approached them before it was drafted) they wrote many letters, testified, and eventually Munoz withdrew her support (but it was her bill to begin with). The bill didn’t pass, thanks to ongoing advocacy, all of which wasted State and DV/SA time and money.

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