Bright, shiny objects: Pre-election news - Must Read Alaska
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Thursday, January 23, 2020
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Bright, shiny objects: Pre-election news

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The line to vote early at the Gambell Street Division of Elections office in Anchorage is 50 voters deep and a 20-minute wait to get in the door, where the line continues. But the mood was upbeat at 2 pm Monday.

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Early voting also robust in Wasilla at 11 am. h/t Ryan McKee.

JUSTICE DEPARTMENT WILL BE WATCHING: The U.S. Department of Justice will have 500 observers on the ground in 28 states, including a few in Alaska to ensure that ballots are available in Native languages:  Bethel Census Area, Dillingham Census Area, Kusilvak Census Area, Yukon-Koyukuk Census Area. But will they be able to ensure voter fraud doesn’t occur as it did in the primary? Meh.

POLL WATCHERS NEEDED: We can’t count on the federal observers to protect our elections. If you see anything amiss on election day at your precinct, contact Suzanne Downing. 

ELECTION WORKERS UNPAID?  Overheard at the Lakefront Hotel were disgruntled temporary election workers who still haven’t been paid for working the August Primary Election. The pay is low, but for people in rural Alaska, it’s significant. Given the heavy politicization of the Division of Elections of late, maybe they are only paying out when the precinct results meet with the Walker Adminstration’s approval. We’re joking, of course. Sort of.

ALASKA’S FACEBOOK ELECTION: While you are busy unfriending all your Hillary supporter “friends”, and they are busy unfriending you, what on earth will your Facebook feed look like on Nov. 9? Will it go from nonstop politics back to rescued puppies and guacamole recipes? We hope so.

From the political consultants we hear this election cycle in Alaska has seen the most robust use of social media in Alaska political history. It’s unprecedented. The cost of social media is a fraction of radio and television for a state House or Senate race. The ability to target people in their exact locations is the new gold standard.

MARGARET STOCK, MARK BEGICH, PAY TO PLAY: As seen in this snip from the latest FEC report, Margaret Stock has paid tens of thousands to Mark Begich’s consulting firm. And over the weekend he recorded a robo-call for her. Does that look like a paid endorsement? Would that even be legal? Not so much…

(Editor’s note: A note today from Mark Begich tells us to “get your facts straight.” His company is Nothern Compass Group, he writes. But we also found this: 

http://hilltoppublicsolutions.com/team/mark-begich/

Who can one believe these days?

MUST READ ALASKA ENDORSES:

We break with tradition and offer the following endorsements:

PRESIDENT: DONALD TRUMP. The man has the ability to learn and grow. We’re giving him a chance. The alternative is unsupportable.

U.S. SENATE: LISA MURKOWSKI. We have a strong team in Washington — the strongest in years. Let’s keep them going.

U.S. CONGRESS: DON YOUNG. Because we don’t do politically correct either (and because he has more energy for the job in his little finger than his limp Democratic challenger.)

BALLOT MEASURE ONE: Vote NO. Read our view here. If we want people to act as citizens and take the responsibility attached to citizenship, why do we keep lowering the bar? Read this from Anchorage Daily Planet. Read what the Frontiersman has to say. And realize that the New Venture Fund dark money group just dumped another $210,000 to convince you to vote for it.

BALLOT MEASURE TWO: Vote YES. It allows state debt for the purpose of postsecondary student loans. It’s not a big problem.

JUDGES: Vote NO on retaining Justices Joel Bolger and Peter Maassen because of a decision they made to invalidate a law requiring doctors – with some exceptions – to notify the parents of minor children getting abortions.

FOLLOW THE NEWS: GOPAC will keep you up to date with election results from critical races around the country. Follow the GOPAC Twitter feed here.

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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.

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