Alaska Native leader and former Seward Mayor Edgar Blatchford files for U.S. Senate

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Edgar Blatchford, who was elected as mayor of Seward and also once served as commissioner of the Department of Community and and Regional Affairs in the 1990s, has filed for U.S. Senate as a Democrat. 

Before 2016, Blatchford was a Republican, but he has been an active Democrat since 2016, when he first filed for the office of U.S. Senate, losing in the primary to Ray Metcalfe. In 2018, he filed to run for lieutenant governor in the 2018 Democratic primary, but dropped out of the race on June 8.

He has a bachelors degree from Alaska Pacific University, a law degree from University of Washington, a masters degree from Columbia University, and a masters of public administration from Harvard University. On top of that, he has a Ph.D. from the University of Alaska, where he has taught journalism.

Blatchford also served in the administration of Gov. Frank Murkowski as commissioner of Community and Economic Development. He was mayor of Seward from 1999 to 2003. An Inupiaq, Blatchford was born in Nome and now lives in Anchorage.

Back in the 1980s, Blatchford founded the publishing company Alaska Newspapers Inc. and has been a professor at the University of Alaska Anchorage since 1995.

Last month another Democrat filed for U.S. Senate: Pat Chesbro, an Alaska Democratic Party officer from Wasilla.

Blatchford would peel away votes from both Sen. Lisa Murkowski, and Chesbro, if he makes it past the open primary in August and into the final four in the general election.

So far, the two big campaign for U.S. Senate are Murkowski and Republican Kelly Tshibaka, who is more conservative than Murkowski. There are 21 people filed for the office, which comes up for election every six years.

18 COMMENTS

  1. All of those degrees and he went from being a Republican first to a Democrat late in life? I’ll pass. That kind of profile fits the framework of an I D I O T.

    • I believe in education and with the fast-changing world we now live in, the best way for Alaska to get ahead is to support education and fill the industries with an educated workforce that will instill greater pride in who we are.

      • This doesn’t make sense. You had to become a democrat in order to support education?

        Are being conservative and being educated mutually exclusive in your mind?

  2. I worked with the Blatchford Family back in 70’s and early 80’s! In Bethel & Adak. Great honest Family Edgar & HisDad & Uncles are the best wish He would run as a conservative!

  3. Mr. Blatchford–Alaska Native leader? Realistically, he is a ho-hum sort of fellow who will “amass” a couple hundred votes! Senator Blatchford? What a thought!

    • Well, I have and always well, concentrate on jobs and economic development for Alaskans. Alaska is not a colony. We can do our own thinking.

    • Maybe so, but, regarding being a leader, I haven’t been involved with a Native corporation (Chugach Alaska Corporation) since 2005. It is not because I haven’t wanted to be involved with my Native corporation, it’s just that they, the board of directors, selects the candidates to run against them. So, in order to play the game, you have to play the game the way the board wants you to play the game. I prefer to be independent of the board’s politics. I hope that clarifies a point or two. Thanks!

  4. Go Kelly Go! We need you in that Senate seat to help restore America back to greatness!

    • Michael, you’re scratching at the bottom of the barrel. Only the naive talk of politicians–especially those who have popped up from nowhere–as if they were “benefactors!” However, it is not as if “Go Kelly Go” is the only phony in the race: I know nobody who’d say that Murkowski is intellectually honest! So, on second thought, maybe we’re all going to be scratching at the bottom of the barrel in making our choice for U. S. Senate. Make no mistake, though, not a single one of the candidates will be a benefactor for the people! Our “glory days” are past!

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