There is little to no chance the legislature will accede to Governor Dunleavy’s request for a special session at a middle school in Wasilla (though the idea is fun). This administration is no friend to the Legislative majorities right now and appears to have an instinct for bullying. I bet if they go, they go to gavel in and gavel out in the same breath, dispatching the political stunt without incurring more than the cost of a days rental car and a beer at one of the fine Mat-Su breweries.
Who wants to go somewhere to do serious business while getting screamed at by citizens hyped up on rage radio and its toxic manipulations of our shared reality. It seems that either the Governor has bad advisors or is ignoring his advisors who are keen to the politics of compromise. His Lt. Governor and even his advisor, The Oft Maligned Ben Stevens, are likelier to make a deal with the AK Legislature than an advisor from Americans for Prosperity and an advisor from the Alaska Republican Party. I guess we know who has the ear of this Governor at this point. This is a reason this Governor sticks in the craw with some bitterness: deference to harsh goals cooked up by outsiders. He appears weak and wobbly, and it is sad to watch.
At this point, we get to see which legislators actually believe in the harsh goals of Americans for Prosperity and the Alaska Republican Party. In a back room of the executive branch, Donna Arduin, Tuckerman Babcock, and an assortment of hardliners are elbow deep in the operating budget extracting parts deemed extraneous. Soon the legislature will be called on to assess the damage and either accept or override the vetoes. Your role in this is to ensure your legislator is held to account for their choice. It is always a choice. My great hope is that this administration will serve to remove a vast number of lock-step legislators from office.
Start booking office visits with your Representative and Senator today. You don’t get summer off from participation in the American experiment, and neither do your legislators. If they voted the wrong way, regarding funding for a government program to appease the Governor, it is your duty to let them politely know this.
That said, I will be signing off until August to gillnet Bristol Bay Sockeye Salmon (the best tasting and healthiest salmon on the Planet which may even cure what ails you if taken in large, frequent doses) so I ask that you, please meet with legislators on my behalf in my absence.
Additionally please note that the Pebble Mine Army Corps Of Engineers DEIS public comment period is open until July 1. Pebble Spokesman Mike Heatwole said on the radio that fishers sending gillnet corks with personal notes opposing Pebble to Senator Murkowski was disrespectful. That is untrue. Fishing is always an act of faith, and defending your livelihood by creative civic engagement is an act of love.
Have a good Summer, folks.
Government Affairs Director
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