INCUMBENT IN THE MIDDLE IN NOME DURING REGULAR SESSION
In March, a lot of work was being done by legislators at the Capitol in Juneau. It was the middle of session, with a month to go, and a budget crisis was looming. House and Senate had produced their budgets and were now tackling other big items pertaining to revenues.
SB 128, the restructuring of the Permanent Fund, was being heard in committee; the bill affected every Alaskan. Negotiations were under way on oil and gas tax credits. HB 156, protecting parents’ rights in education, was up in the Education Committee.
But the guy pictured above with the horrible attendance record was partying in Nome.
Jim Colver, representative from District 9, was at the Iditarod Sled Dog Race finish line, and from the social media pictures out there, he was having a ball, missing important work in the Education Committee and Labor and Commerce Committee that week, all for the thrill of the chase.
This past session, Must Read was able to document at least 12 instances where Colver was gone missing or straggled into House floor sessions looking like he’d been out riding the range. His attendance record earns him the fifth worst in the House; the others had either health crises or family deaths that took them away.
The photo above, and others we uncovered from the weekend away, are unusual, in that Colver is typically more careful about covering his tracks. Although there are plenty of anecdotes about him in the Capitol leaning in a bit too close to young female aides, the most family-friendly description that we can repeat is that he is simply a one-man mood ring. He runs hot and cold — hot on the trail of some things at the Capitol, but cold when it comes to helping his fellow Valley Republicans.
In fact, he’s the king of sandbags — he is known for ambushing his fellow Republicans on their legislation, not in committee, but after
Right now, his mood is cold. He’s attacking one of his constituents who has the nerve to challenge him for his seat. The race for House District 9 is turning out to be a political scuffle in front, and a brawl in the back as Colver looks for a way to remain in power.
POLLS, SURVEYS, MUSK OX
In a recent straw poll by the Mat-Su Business Alliance, challenger and outsider George Rauscher prevailed strongly over Colver, with Rauscher winning the debate forum 34 to Colver’s 7.
That’s about it for polls on this race. As far as anyone can tell, there are no official surveys being done in the area because the district is extremely difficult to poll, stretching from Palmer-Fishhook precinct all the way to Valdez and Whittier.
But from the material that Colver is producing, he may have his own Big Labor-produced poll, and he’s worried. The evidence he thinks this district is slipping from his fingers is that he’s gone to the extent of naming his opponent in his literature hitting the mailboxes now — a rarity for an incumbent.
Colver this week is pushing his name as the true conservative, while social media has him pegged as the leading liberal in the Musk Ox Caucus.
The other members of the caucus represent fairly liberal districts, but Colver represents what is arguably the most conservative district in the state, making him the anomaly among the musk ox.