Alaskan leaders comment on Supreme Court pick - Must Read Alaska
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Tuesday, July 7, 2020
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Alaskan leaders comment on Supreme Court pick


Alaska’s U.S. senators weighed in on President Donald Trump’s choice for the U.S. Supreme Court. Both Sens. Lisa Murkowski and Dan Sullivan are lawyers.

Candidates for governor also issued comments on Monday evening. Even Mark Begich, the Democrat, made comments focused on his interest in protecting a woman’s right to an abortion.

But Gov. Bill Walker was dead silent about Brett Kavanaugh’s nomination by President Trump.

Here are the statements culled from the various leaders around the state:

Sen. Lisa Murkowski: “This evening the President nominated Judge Brett Kavanaugh to serve as an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court. While I have not met Judge Kavanaugh, I look forward to sitting down for a personal meeting with him. I intend to review Judge Kavanaugh’s decisions on the bench and writings off the bench, and pay careful attention to his responses to questions posed by my colleagues on the Senate Judiciary Committee. The American Bar Association’s Standing Committee on the Judiciary will also review Judge Kavanaugh’s qualifications prior to these hearings and issue a rating. I intend to carefully consider that rating, the information obtained through personal meetings, my own review of Judge Kavanaugh’s qualifications and record, and the views of Alaskans in determining whether or not to support him. My standard for reviewing Supreme Court nominees remains rigorous and exacting.”

Sen. Dan Sullivan: “I’ve had the pleasure of knowing Judge Brett Kavanaugh for some time – dating back to when we worked together in the Bush administration. He is very well regarded as a judge on the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals – the second most important court in the country. In that role he is known for applying the law and Constitution as written, upholding our Second Amendment rights, and having a healthy skepticism concerning the powers of federal administrative agencies.

“In the coming weeks, I look forward to reviewing in further depth Judge Kavanaugh’s extensive record as a D.C. Circuit judge, and discussing these and other important issues with him. I expect the upcoming Senate confirmation process to be both rigorous and fair, one deserving of a Supreme Court nominee.”

Both leading Republican candidates for governor also weighed in:

Mike Dunleavy: “This is one of the most important things a president can do, and I know that for many Americans and Alaskans, the ability to create a more even-handed, constitutionally attuned Supreme Court was at the heart of their vote for Donald Trump for president.

“Mr. Kavanaugh has an outstanding career and has a long record of decisions to review in his upcoming confirmation process. Alaskans will want to know where he stands on core principles in the Constitution, such as our Second Amendment rights and federal overreach. I look forward to our senators giving him a full and respectful vetting as he moves through the advice and consent of the Senate. I’m very optimistic about his prospects for being confirmed.”

Mead Treadwell: “This nomination shows President Trump has kept his promise to nominate individuals to the Court who have impeccable  credentials, and those who support the Constitution, and understand the Rule of Law and Judicial restraint. Kavanaugh may have the ability to vote on Sturgeon vs Frost, the Alaska hovercraft case that goes before the Court this fall, and could very well be the pivotal vote to ensure Alaskans have the ability to enjoy the public lands and waters we have, against federal overreach.”

Tuckerman Babcock, chairman of the Alaska Republican Party: “We are grateful to President Trump for keeping his campaign promises once again!  Judge Kavanaugh is an excellent choice, totally committed to defending our Constitution, as written, approved and amended by the people of the United States.”

The leading Democratic candidate for governor weighed in:

Mark Begich: “President Trump’s Supreme Court nominee is yet another reminder that elections matter. I know there has been a lot of concern over the future of civil rights and liberties. Understandably, there has been particular concern about women’s rights and the future of Roe v. Wade. Let me be clear. Governors will become the last line of defense to protect women against these extremist attacks. I will always protect a woman’s right to make her own health care decisions. Here in Alaska, we value our personal privacy and do not want the government intervening in our personal decisions – including health care. That is why Alaska legalized a woman’s right to choose in 1970 – three years before Roe v. Wade became the law of the land. As Governor, I will fight every day – as I always have – to uphold civil rights and liberties for all Alaskans including a woman’s fundamental right to make her own health care decisions.”

Gov. Bill Walker: No statement was issued on Monday by his office or campaign. (Earlier this month, Walker appointed a Juneau lawyer to a Juneau Superior Court seat, and then rescinded his offer and gave the job to someone else. Many in the legal community were aghast at his judgment, which may have kept him from commenting on Kavanaugh at this time).

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Suzanne Downing had careers in business and journalism before serving as the Director of Faith and Community-based Initiatives for Florida Gov. Jeb Bush and returning to Alaska to serve as speechwriter for Gov. Sean Parnell. Born on the Oregon coast, she moved to Alaska in 1969.

Latest comments

  • Might we assume that Mr. Begich also supports that right to ‘cast aside’ those come into world ‘defective’ in some way, ie: deformed, wrong gender, weak, etc? It’s not like that would be a new concept. God forbid that we go there, but choices are choices, right ?

    • Well, if he finds casting aside perfectly healthy babies, the I think your point goes without question.

  • “and do not want the government intervening in our personal decisions – including health care”.

    Mr. Begich, I’m not sure you understand what those words mean. Your vote to pass the Affordable Care Act ran completely counter to that sentiment and directly involved government in our health care.

    • Notice that for the Left, “decisions about health care” is now code for “abortion.” Similarly, Obamacare has created the illusion in the minds of some that those covered now have “health insurance.” There is no “insurance” part to Obamacare. It is WELFARE.

  • Yesterday someone said to me that Bill Walker is seldom, if ever, honest, forthright and thoughtful. I responded that while that is true it could also be true that Walker is simply asleep at the switch. In any event Alaskans are suffering at the hands of this governor in a way and to a degree that has no precedent. We no longer believe in our government. We continue to be in a long recession that was entirely unnecessary and entirely caused by the executive. We had our own dark corner of the national Me-too movement because Walker and Mallott brought us 3 sexual miscreants to the Alaska House in order to roll the Majority. We have a crime wave that reaches new benchmarks every month, and it’s despite Walker that we can all wear guns; which we do. An all-time record number and percentage of Alaskans have become dependent upon Medicaid, food stamps and the like – and Walker touts that as an achievement! Alice Rogoff, Bruce Botelho and Vince Beltrami brought us this disaster that is the Unity Ticket; what will they bring us between now and November? What are you doing about it today?

  • Mr. Begich must be having a memory lapse, his quote “Here in Alaska we value our personal privacy and do not want the government intervening in our personal decisions – including healthcare.” Mr. Begich, did you really just say that? We have not forgotten how instrumental you were in getting the ACA passed -the government intervening in our personal decisions, healthcare case in point! Go back to whatever you were doing and leave the citizens of Alaska alone.

  • Memo to Senator Murkowski: Few Alaskan lawyers are members of the ABA and in any event, the ABA committee has demonstrated, over and over again, that it supports Leftist judicial adventurism and expansion of the Swamp. In short, Lisa, if you are listening to these people, you are making a major mistake.

    Beyond that, your “rigorous and exacting” standard is a mystery. Perhaps you will “know it when you see it?”

    Roe v. Wade was a political decision by a Court that should never have entered that thicket. The foundation upon which it was based, Griswald v. Connecticut, is jibberish, not jurisprudence. Demanding that Judge Kavanaugh support Roe is the same as asking him to support the irrational. The politics of Roe may make lots of people happy, but that does not make it good Constitutional law.

  • I have been sickened over the years with Lisa’s failure to represent her constituents. The “my opinion has evolved” BS about marriage, tax payer funded abortion, ILLEGAL immigration amnesty, and more. And now she wants to “take it slow” for a Supreme Court Justice who wants to make opinions by interpreting the Constitution. Sad. Also, I want to know where she stands on Prop 1. Has she made any announcement about that? Will be interesting to see how her liberal donor base affects her decisions..

  • It warms my heart to read these great comments and it renews my hope that our wonderful state will return to the sanity that only Constitutional Conservatives bring to our lives.

  • Our President is keeping his promise to fill the federal courts including the Supreme Court with conservative judges. He is doing so many wonderful things for our country and this latest nominee to the Supreme Court is just another reason to fully support him.

  • Will you please follow up with Lisa to see if she going to support constitutional justice for supreme court?

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