Don Young marks 49 years of congressional service on Sunday

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On March 6, 1973, Congressman Don Young became Alaska’s lone congressman, a position he has held ever since. He marked the 49th anniversary of that day by saying that being congressman for Alaska has been an honor of a lifetime.

Young was re-elected to the 117th Congress in 2020 to serve his 25th term as Alaska’s only representative to the United States House of Representatives. First sworn in as a freshman to the 93rd Congress after winning a special election on March 6, 1973, Young is today the Dean of the House and the longest serving member of the current Congress.  He is running to serve his 26th term, and is challenged by Nick Begich III, the grandson of the man who preceded Young.

Young was born in California on June 9, 1933 and moved to Alaska before statehood. He settled in Fort Yukon, where he taught school and ran a tug and barge operation on the Yukon River.

Young entered a life of public service in 1964 when he was elected mayor of Fort Yukon. Two years later, his district elected him to the State Legislature in Juneau, where he served in the State House from 1966 to 1970, and later in the State Senate from 1970 to 1973. He ran for U.S. House and lost to Congressman Nick Begich I, who later was lost in a plane crash with Congressman Hale Boggs of Louisiana. The plane went down on the way from Anchorage to Juneau.

Young ran in a special election and won the seat in 1973. He, Sen. Ted Stevens, and Sen. Mike Gravel led the historic battle for approval of the Trans-Alaskan Pipeline.

Young said, “Next to statehood itself, the most historical legislation passed that affected every Alaskan then, now, and in the future, was the passage of the pipeline legislation.”

29 COMMENTS

  1. All that and to end up with nothing for Alaskans list your accomplishments for Alaskans sir. 49 years of oath breaking 49 years of no integrity for the citizens sir. For The 15th time this year please list your accomplishments sir. I asked president trump this I have all his accomplishments mailed to me the first time I asked mr integrity was president trump. Mr oath breaker is what we got Alaskans. BOOOOOOOO sir

  2. Don:
    Quit the BS! We all know you are a crooked old politician, on the take for decades, and rich beyond belief for spreading around your influence with millionaires and billionaires who needed Congressional assistance. The FBI had their sights on you for years…….and still do, albeit your
    legal slush fund for criminal defense purposes has stalled the investigation. Your tenure as Committee Chair for Transportation and Resources was a bit of a joke, while you slept through Committee meetings and had your bank accounts stuffed by Florida developers.
    Don, please extricate yourself from your pure selfishness and 49 years of egocentric-driven delusions. Please spare us more grief. You owe it to Alaskans. The honor will be all OURS.

  3. I would argue that the most significant legislation was native land claims as it will last forever. The pipeline likely won’t.

  4. At 88 Don has officially lived half his life in DC! He has a trailer in Ft. Yukon that he visits once a year, no longer Alaskan. 49 years is about 30 years too long. My family is working to make sure his current term is his final term.

  5. An honorable man and public servant. Now we’re electing people like MTG, Bobert, Jordan, and Gosar to the House.

    Maybe Young is glad to be near the end of his tenure.

    • How many times have you been under FBI investigation and censured and fined by an ethics committee?

      We may have different views on what we could consider “honorable” service.

      Never without a plan, it looks like they found the next lifelong yes man with Revak.

      Never thought I’d say this but we need Begich to save Alaska from these bought and paid for career politicians!

    • The folks like MTG, Bobert, Jordan, and Gosar are all working with the Democrats to decriminalize marijuana, they’ve actually visited some of the jails people are held, Bobert is working with Democrats to allow the VA to start clinical trials the pros/cons of marijuana use regarding our military vets that suffer PTSD. MTG is also pointing out the amount of wasted money in Biden’s $1.5 trillion to run our government for one year, like massive increase for wars and little for the homeless, mental health, healthcare, or even public schools.
      .
      While I’m not fans of these folks, they seem to be more concerned about America’s working class than Don Young ever has. The only thing he’s good for is bringin’ in more pork for more roads to nowhere.

    • He was a schoolteacher once upon a time. Speaking of that, look up a case called Begich v. Jefferson. After reading it, you’ll understand that the collision course between the elder Nick Begich and Young was inevitable.

    • He did run a few barges into the ground up near Fort Yukon in the early 60’s. My cousin said he couldn’t read the river very well, unless he had a Native pilot nearby to show him. Lou did his bidding for the Bush votes. A lot of Natives didn’t like Don.

    • I spent under the minimum filed right before the deadline mid June four years ago, went to 10 events from Homer to Fairbanks, maybe 5 district meetings, Young attended zero events before the primary I got 10k votes he received 38k. He monopolized the radio waves. Beat me 38 to 10 if it was a football game. Fake media said he was running unopposed for about 10 days before the primary…so without the media’s he will lose this year…

  6. service? this seems to be a childish way of looking at the political class who exactly do any of them serve?

  7. Sure is getting Old having young in office.
    Service my backside, had he left 30 years ago he’d be well respected.

  8. For every citizen of Alaska, you’ve certainly got to asking yourself if we’re getting our money’s worth? If you believe, like I do, that we’re “not” then, it’s time for a change. Instead of going thru a arduous electection process, it might be well worth the effort for Yung to step aside and Dunleavy to appoint a replacement (Nick Begich).

  9. His ‘sell by’ date has come and gone long ago. We are in some of the most perilous times ever–given that the weather forecast at some day coming up may be: today’s temperature 50,000 degrees and rising…

    We better get this one right.

  10. “Service” is a highly debatable term. With few exceptions the last few years, the only thing Don Young has served is Don Young.

    Never been a better example for the need for term limits.

  11. Wouldn’t that be sweet irony if a Begich becomes the one to end Young’s political career.

  12. Don is a RINO and establishment goon. Any politician willing to start WW3 with Russia when it is our fault he is in Ukraine in the first place, needs to go! Ask Don to explain why we have numerous Bioweapons Labs in Ukraine and who funded them? What kind of work was being done in them. If Mexico had Bioweapons Labs on our southern border, would we be okay with that? If Mexico was cutting off our water, as Ukraine was cutting off Crimea’s water, would we be okay with that? You can tell who the corrupt politicians are by their actions. The war hawks are out in force and they are using the corrupt American media to push their narrative. The Russians are not the bad guy here and either Don knows this and is purposely hiding it or is completely ignorant of the facts.

  13. He has turned into a democrat. Time to hang it up and quit damaging real conservative causes. Don’t be like old puddin’ head. Get out before somebody has to start changing your diapers.

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