Alyse Galvin barks: Don Young shook my hand!



Alyse Galvin stalked off the stage after scolding Don Young for shaking her hand “too hard” subsequent to their debate at Alaska Federation of Natives.

“You hurt me! You hurt me!” she barked at him, well within range of the microphone, and then she hastily exited the stage without thanking the moderators.

“Ow,” she said, as she left the stage. Young had apologized, but she did not accept it. This was not one of her better performances.

To the viewer, the hand shake appeared to be normal, and Young is, after all, a strong 85 years old. Young appeared surprised at her dramatic exit, but he then got up from his chair and thanked the moderators before exiting the stage himself.

Galvin started out her debate performance by channeling her inner Sen. Elizabeth Warren: She adopted an accent reminiscent of Native Alaskans. Ethan Berkowitz also did this oddity of speech in 2010, and his strange new accent was remarked upon at the time as he ran for governor.

Galvin culturally appropriated the speaking pattern, slowly forming her words in a noticeable fashion, one that was not her usual style of speech.

“First. I. Would. Like. To. Acknowledge. That. We. Are. On. Dena’ina. Land. Today. And. Every. Day,” she started.

It was her best Native accent.

At times, she appeared on the verge of tears, with deeply flushed cheeks and quavering voice, while at other times, she forgot to speak in her idea of a Native accent, and lapsed into her normal Midwestern intonation.

Don Young was Don Young: Plain spoken, always making the case for why he is still the best congressman for Alaska.

Galvin suffered from some of the questions because she clearly was unaware that Rep. Young had sponsored a lot of the legislation that she says she supports — Indian Child Welfare Act, and the 8A program, which she was unable to articulate to the audience.

In fact, as Young pointed out, about 60 percent of the bills he works on are for Alaska Native interests. “Because I listen, because I work, and because I’m dedicated,” he said.

Alyse Galvin yells at Congressman Don Young after he attempted to shake her hand after the debate at Alaska Federation of Native.

But in spite of the emotional perfomance and the bizarre ending, she received a lot of applause from the same group that clapped hard later for Mark Begich, in his debate with Mike Dunleavy. It appeared to be an organized effort.


  1. Does anyone have the heart to explain to her that she has filed to run for Congress rather than school board? It is all rather tragic.

  2. Hopefully natives will get over the embarrassing pandering on display by Walker today and start thinking of themselves as Alaskans .. Just as much as non natives. Hopefully natives will understand that under Governor Dunleavy their native corporations will prosper from his plan to develop resources. Hopefully.

  3. Remember Lisa’s write in victory? She could thank natives and unions for that. Why would anyone think this will be any different? It would require natives thinking for themselves and people realizing where Beltrami’s interests are. Too many people are too disinterested or just plain too ignorant to see what’s best for Alaska. Hint: It ain’t Begich! At least this is a fitting end to The PFD thief in chief.
    Vote Dunleavy!!!

  4. And she is one of the founders of Great Ala$ka $chool$ which demanded more money with not accountability–waste.

  5. It will be nice to have an articulate, calm, thoughtful speaker representing us, someone who has lived in Alaska more recently. Great Alaska Schools actually does hold schools accountable by being vigilant and publicizing both achievement and neglect. And they are in a position to do both since they have representatives who actually visit schools instead of standing outside and figuratively throwing stones.

    • Was it this noble lot who showed how Alaska’s education industry achieved distinction by producing the worst product at the highest price compared to the rest of America…
      while industry employees and management negotiate how much to reward themselves for this noteworthy “achievement”…
      Productive Alaskans know this lot are “accountable” to nobody for what they produce or spend.
      One does hope a determined David with a well-placed stone routs the philistine mob that is Alaska’s education industry, along with their helpers in the party of Hillary Clinton.
      It could happen…

  6. Her pathetic attempt at a #metoo moment. Laughable and sad that this is what these Demoncrats have devolved into.

  7. Another so called independent (democrat) candidate playing well-scripted games to trick voters… Rather than believing this ruse of physical harm, most people with a little common sense will conclude the obvious – that Alyse’s hands are just as weak as her mind.

  8. I find it unseemly to say the least that so many here would mock Alyse Galvin for responding as any human being would when another person inflicts physical harm on them. In addition, the tenor and wording of your mockery (“drama queen” and “barked”) is sexist.

      • It shouldn’t come as much of a surprise that I disagree with you. I don’t think it’s pathetic to speak up when you think someone is being cruel and unfair.

        • And I find it “cruel and unfair” when an opponent pretends to speak like an Alaska Native (it’s incredibly racist and mean). Calling people sexist just because you disagree with them also qualifies as sexism and discrimination. Please get over your Political Correctness and make valid points (if any) without automatically calling people “sexists”.

          • First, I’m happy to elaborate on my comments above—my reason for calling this description “sexist” is the use of the terms “drama queen” and “barked.” These terms (and others like them) are used commonly to demean women for showing emotion, to imply that it’s somehow crazy and unreasonable to do so.

            Second, I disagree with your statement (and the comment in the post) about Alyse Galvin somehow speaking like an Alaska Native person. I went back and watched that part of the video to see if I missed something (2:18 if you want to do so too) and I truly don’t see what Suzanne Downing is talking about.

    • And Alyse would have been offended if Don Young didn’t offer her his hand. I guess she’s never shaken hands before.

      • It’s disingenuous to imply that there’s no happy medium between not offering your hand and squeezing someone’s hand so hard they cry out in pain.

        • What is disingenuous is someone making a huge production over a hand shake. For decades we’ve been told that having weak hand shakes imply you’re unreliable or a fraud. I hardly thing Mr. Young intentionally tried to shake Ms. Galvin’s hand that hard (if the shake really was that hard). I have tried Googling any other time Mr. Young has been accused of handing someone’s hand to make them “cry out in pain” and I can’t find any.

          Maybe Ms. Galvin was playing hysteria because this seems to be the latest Democrat ploy of dehumanizing their opponent.

  9. You cannot live and work in Washington for forty five years without becoming more like them and less like us. Thank you for all you’ve done Don but it may be time to leave.

  10. We all know there will come a day when we will no longer have Don Young. However, there has yet to be a legit alternative. Alyse Galvin certainly doesn’t have any credibility. A handshake argument? Is that all we have here? Things have gotten so incredibly pathetic. It is nauseating.

  11. Maybe you’re the racist one for thinking she was putting on a Native accent and talking slowly when speaking to Native people…?

    Also, Alyse Galvin has a history of domestic violence in her family. I am not surprised that she would react so strongly to someone hurting her by physical force.

    • Maybe she should stay inside and stay away from the cold, mean outside world. Voters don’t care about stupid handshakes, they care about electing someone that accomplish things that benefit Alaskans. The only thing Alyse Galvin will accomplish is wasting our 1 seat in congress.

  12. As with President Trump, Don Young has a history of not doing things to be politically correct. I hardly think though, that a handshake, firm or weak, could be misinterpreted to show poor behavior on anyone’s part. Alyse Galvin is obviously trying anything she can to be noticed by her press zealots. Like the president, we may not especially like the personality Don portrays, but we certainly like his representation of our interests in Washington. He is our current champion there. Lisa used to be in the running, but has since abdicated her position with Alaskans. Just wait to hear her try to defend her support for Begich!! That’ll be rich.
    John Sparaga

  13. You certainly don’t pass the baton of 40+ years in Congress to a person like Alyse Galvin. I am sure she is a nice person. I’m sure her hands are soft. School board, yes. Congress, no. Sorry folks.

  14. I think Don Young does “his handshake” on purpose to try to prove his toughness or manliness. In truth I feel it shows his weakness. It is a very selfish thing to do and it is really a sign of Young being a bully. It is disrespectful but that’s nothing new for Don Young.

  15. Using negative personality comments is not helpful for undecided voters.. I’ve known Alyse Galvin for years and detected no unusual accent on her part. I am very curios as to what message Rep Young was trying to send with an over enthusiastic hand shake. And lastly to be useful the article would have covered each candidates positions on st least a couple topics.

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