Dunbar is desperate: Assembly lifts Anchorage lockdown to rescue his campaign - Must Read Alaska
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Sunday, September 19, 2021
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Dunbar is desperate: Assembly lifts Anchorage lockdown to rescue his campaign

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Assemblymen Forrest Dunbar and Chris Constant have seen the polling, and it’s not pretty for Dunbar, who is running for Anchorage mayor in the May 11 runoff election.

Dunbar is one of the most strident opponents of restoring normalcy to the Anchorage economy. It has hurt him with voters, according to polling seen by Must Read Alaska.

On Tuesday, the two men crafted an amendment to Emergency Order 20 that removes all requirements on businesses and lifts all gathering limitations. Constant offered it to the Assembly, it was seconded by Dunbar, and the Assembly passed it. This, after a year of refusing to lift the lockdowns.

The only lockdown measure that remains after Sunday night is the mayor’s mask mandate.

With public sentiment strongly against the acting mayor’s emergency powers, which has been in effect for over a year, Dunbar has worried. His campaign has no energy and has not been able to get traction due to his record of more than 20 votes to keep Anchorage in restraints.

Constant and Dunbar are joined at the hip on the Assembly and vote in lock step during every meeting. Constant did the heavy lifting on the amendment; he explained that he has been watching the death counts in Anchorage and that deaths have dropped off since December.

Constant said he has been all over the municipality and “I witnessed various stages of commitment to the mandates and requirements that exist, 50-50 at best, and still the numbers are coming down. Deaths has ceased at this time. Hospitalization down to a couple a day.”

Using his feelings as a barometer, he said it was time to rescind the restrictions. Constant also volunteers for the Dunbar campaign in his spare time and is his closest political ally.

The business community likely agrees. It has been vocal and visible in its opposition to Dunbar and this weekend a massive business-initiated fundraiser for Dunbar’s opponent, Dave Bronson, saw 450-500 business people come together to support Bronson. The group raised $39,000, even with the $500 per donor limit. No one remembers such a huge political rally in the history of Alaska since Sarah Palin was nominated for vice president.

Momentum has clearly been in the Bronson campaign, and a Hail Mary was needed for Dunbar.

Dunbar, in his campaign literature, has stated that 70 percent vaccination of the population is required to get the economy back on its feet. 70 percent is also the goal the acting mayor set in March for when she might lift the restrictions on Anchorage businesses.

But meanwhile, Anchorage shoppers have voted with their feet and are heading to the MatSu Valley for shopping, dining, and recreation. Some Valley businesses report their best year ever, while Anchorage businesses have closed by the dozens.

Now, Dunbar and Constant say they are ready for indoor gatherings to resume normally. That means graduations and proms, and it means sporting events can proceed with spectators.

This will also give Dunbar more of an opportunity to campaign, something he has been reluctant to do in person. Most of his campaign events have been via Zoom teleconference.

Constant pointed out that he has discovered that people in Anchorage are not complying anymore with the mandates anyway. It “is just not happening,” he said. Later in the meeting, he proposed converting all the mandates that had been lifted into recommendations.

Assemblywoman Allard said the vast majority of people testifying over the past many months have been opposed to the lockdowns. Allard asked for an amendment to terminate the emergency proclamation altogether, but her amendment failed 6-4.

Constant disagreed with Allard that the community opposes lockdowns.

“My constituents are telling me they are no longer coming to this chamber because it is not a safe environment for them,” Constant said into the record. His constituents do, in fact, support the mandates, but now, “We’re ready to move forward.”

Assemblywoman Meg Zalatel said it was too soon to lift the restrictions. She wanted a later date, effective at 12 am May 3, 2021, and her amendment passed, even though Dunbar wanted the easing of mandates to go into effect immediately, and he questioned her repeatedly as to why the city would have to wait.

The voters are already turning in ballots this week, and Dunbar is keenly aware that more than 4,300 ballots in the runoff have already been received by the Municipal Election Office.

There is nothing preventing the next mayor from going back into lockdown after the May 11 election, but for now, a frightened candidate will get the credit for what is at least a temporary lifting of the Anchorage lockdowns.

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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

  • Either Dunbar believes his lockdowns are essential to safety and he is willing to put lives at risk to win, or he has known the whole time that his lockdowns are overreach and he was ok with that for the sake of power.

    Either way, this is a raw power grab.

  • Oh my, the boys are scared and peeing in their pants! and decided to act. 🤣🤣🤣you forgot one detail, those “face covers” were supposed to go down as well.
    Anyway, it’s a trap!
    Everything will go to where it was right after the election, if they get it. So anyone, who thinks, the assembly are so kind and thoughtful, are big naive children. It’s a usual trick, these kind of “sharks” will play on you.
    They had ALL THOSE MONTHS TO SERVE !!! And ONLY THEY DID ——DESTROYED the LIVELIHOOD of SOOOOO MANY!!!
    Make a right choice on that ballot!

  • Too little, too late! It shows where his priorities were the whole time. It was all about power and control. Looking forward to a new mayor and a new direction.

  • Laff laff laff! By virtue of residing where I do, I happen to be a “constituent” of the vulgar fascist known as Chris Constantly California… which serves only to mark myself as yet another powerless, voiceless, Anchorage Local (born and raised, hey!). My reasons for avoiding the chamber are not safety related but still twofold 1) he/they banned us from doing so 2) he/they give zero rocks to hear or represent the community voice.
    To the Locals, I would like to say: remember Anchorage fondly. Share your stories of the fun, non-conformist, on-point community we had for so many years that did not rely on crap, imported, divisive L48 ideology. There are generations of us and we’re still here.
    Cheers, yo.

  • Dunbar will not be mayor and Mayor Bronson will end all mandates once and for all. These mandates are nothing more than the wannabe cry baby stupid mayor. They are unenforceable. I do not nor will I wear a face diaper in any store. If the store wants to insist I do then I go elsewhere. My money is better spent in the Valley where common sense prevails.

  • With comedy timing is everything, with politics timing is the only thing.

  • Constant and Dunbar and their liberal cartel has been very cruel to Anchorage the past year. While people were already nursing broken hearts, their liberal cartel goes and throws them out in the cold, figuratively.
    Must Read Alaska, Municipality Of Anchorage Assembly, and Facebook and twitter have recorded video and comment records of how cruel the liberal cartel has been to hurting Anchorage neighbors.

  • The entire so called pandemic wasn’t about a deadly virus it was about shifting money and control. Alaskans are to stupid to be free, Oh yea we figured out who controls you Suzanna Downing say hello to Dunleavy, Walker and Murkowski for us ! Bush’s taught you well

  • What a coincidences! Wait this relaxation of lockdown measures should have been done way earlier. Don’t fall for it, vote for Bronson for mayor. The existing Assembly members are just trying to protect one of their own.

  • Dunbar is a useless, lying idiot. He is putting up television ads that are absolute lies about Bronson and completely golss over his tyrannical stand against the citizens of Anchorage for the last year. Dunbar has to go.

  • KTUU just said on the news last night that the July 4th parade and celebrations are totally cancelled this year due to C19. Will this “coincidental” timing of lifting mandates change this? Here I thought the magical vaccine, which doesn’t prevent spread, was going to get us back to pre-C19 times too. All I know is that the constant contradictions this past year had just made governments, who weren’t all that trustworthy to begin with, all the more crooked and despised. Proof, with case in point here is what Constant and Dunbar have shown.

  • Consider this your friendly reminder to vote!

  • Timely news and I can’t argue your premise. I called the election for Bronson when the acting mayor re-upped the “emergency” measures. Totally uncalled for. The numbers had all ready stared downward but I’m sure the mayor’s office is taking credit anyway.

    Also agree that if Dunbar wins, expect the measures will be resumed. Coincidence the President announced the end of outside masks the same day? The failure to address masks inside says it all. Those of us who are vaccinated don’t pass virus and don’t need to fear virus. All masks do is help people who refuse to be vaccinations feel safe.

  • The Anchorage Assembly has all the credibility of a middle school mock government agency. And the honesty of an organized crime syndicate, rife with arrogant boldness and ‘untouchability’.

    Though it should not be ‘easy’, legal restraints that protect elected and government officials need to the lifted. Power abuse as egregious as this Romper Room assembly has afflicted on the people of this city, and those in other cities, are criminal. And if there was the possibility of legal, civil and criminal liability I wonder what they would have revisited in their rainbow colored minds before spitting on citizens liberties.

  • Dunbar is so desperate to win the mayor’s race that he even proposed a temporary ban on his mask wearing ordinance during campaign events. I asked one of his supporters for an explanation and they said it was because he felt no baby should go unkissed in such an important election.

    He also said that Dunbar is now promising to divert money out of the millions in funds he appropriated to build hotels for the homeless inebriates to an infrastructure fund. The entire 100 dollars diverted will be specifically used to repair potholes in Anchorage.

  • I truly pray that Anchorage is smart enough to dump Dunbar. His rule has harmed Anchorage so much that it is going to be very difficult for it to come back, economically, educationally, socially. It is going to be a tough comeback, especially if Anchorage doesn’t dump Dunbar and allows the Teacher’s Unions to initiate Critical Race Theory in all of education. Get INVOLVED, Anchorage. Bring your city back to normal.

  • Desperation is a stinky cologne…..this is comical and tragic at the same time. I’m hoping for the best and preparing for the worst. C’mon Anchorage the first step is getting out from under democrat control.

  • Dunbar merely pulled a page from the old Soviet Play Book. Even within the Politburo there was an understand when the people had had enough. Some rule or an onerous Party Official would be brought low giving the people a scant glimmer of hope. This action by your local Party Members is no different.

    Do not be fooled!

    The Anchorage Mayor’s run off election is a watershed event in Alaska’s history. Those of us who reside outside of Anchorage can only donate to the Bronson campaign, it is up to you the Anchorage resident to get everyone within your sphere out to VOTE!

  • It looks like Constant is angling for a job in a Dunbar administration. Ask yourself: what paying jobs has Chris held in Anchorage (besides a relatively new “career” selling real estate)? What are his actual, marketable job skills? Also I believe former candidate “ambassador” George Martinez expects a Dunbar job.

    .

    If these two end up in high level Muni jobs, added to the incompetents that are drawing huge Muni paychecks now (Boeckenstedt, Vogel, Henderson, Schutte, and some others), there will be no hope for Anchorage. It will be time for many of us to find better living and surroundings elsewhere.

    .

    Vote for Bronson. Don’t be fooled by the Dunbar ads.

  • This whole “pandemic” has been politicized, what a sham! HCQ was politicized and look how many deaths occurred because of that! Liberalism is causing major damage to this country, this state and city of Anchorage and for Dunbar and his team to lift mandates to garner more votes is an utterly disgusting tactic when in fact they are the ones responsible for the lockdowns in the first place! Have they no shame?
    I for one have been against any lockdown because of a perceived threat from a virus with 99.8% survivability, cut the BS and open the state, open hospitals to use HCQ, cut the masks they do not work!

  • I strongly agree with Suzanne’s analysis: Forrest Gump’s polling indicated that the lockdowns and sanctions are fueling support for Dave Bronson – (which they should!). To diffuse that support, the Leftists on the Assembly acted to support their favored candidate. I will be voting for Bronson unless someone eliminates me before I mark and deposit my ballot.

    Covid has simply revealed the intentions and methods of the Left: More government spending, more government control, more government dependency. If there ever was a time for citizens to repudiate the current “leadership” on the Assembly and in the Mayor’s office, this is it. The Left has destroyed the major cities on the West coast: Seattle, Portland, San Francisco. Forrest Gump and his supporters on the Assembly would unleash the full force of that process on Anchortown.

  • Classic bait and switch

  • Wait….There’s a lockdown?

  • I just drove out to the Valley Monday for a fine meal with friends. Great time and it was interesting to notice that no one in the place had a mask on. Not the servers, not the customers, no one. A refreshing reminder that outside this artificially mandated scare there is life as normal. It also underscores the fact that none of the people that I hold responsible for killing Anchorage’s hospitality industry are qualified to make medical assessments and those that are hired to provide an educated perspective are prone to default to our litigious society’s minimum allowable threat level which somehow morphed a flu into the plague.
    .
    Mr. Dunbar owes me and everybody else in Anchorage that’s been dining in the Valley our time and transpo costs back. He also owes every restaurateur their livelihood and lost income. If Dunbar were the only candidate on the docket, I’d wager most in Anchorage would submit a write in candidate. He’s famous for being the first candidate that’s had such public backlash that the majority of his signs have been rattle canned over the word ‘mayor’. That’s an indication of a major gaff that can’t be fixed in a last ditch hail Mary manner.
    .
    Buh-bye, Dunny. And Mr. Constant, now might be a good time to polish the old budgeting skills. A man can never be too careful when he’s entering a job market twilight zone. If waiting tables is your game plan you may want to apply where you’re sure not to be known. Stateside should do it.

  • We still need to get the vote out for Bronson! The fight is not over!

  • Acting Mayor, Constant, and Dunbar are nothing more than mirror monkeys for the left of San Francisco and the Washington Post, excuse me, the Anchorage Daily News, too boot.
    They belong with AL in Santa Barbara, surfs up!

  • Will Anchorage vote FOR the Bolveshik Boy Wanna Be mayor?
    If we do – this city will be changed irrevocably.

    The Valley is wide open – restaurants, stores, bars, sporting events w/o masks.
    Adulting – people ascertaining their own health risks versus the Nanny State.
    Guess what? People aren’t dying in the streets in the Vally – in fact, their transmission rate is less than Anchorage – and the kids have been in school the whole year.
    Wake up, Anchorage. This is all a power play.

  • The communist assembly which he is part of will do anything to keep the city a —hole!

  • Jamie Allard was on Fagan this morning with an interesting story.

    Looks like the delay in removal of the EO 20 provisions was to give AQD time to figure out a reason to veto it, after which the Assembly will call an emergency meeting (apparently already scheduled for Monday) and override to much media fanfare. Looks like this is a long ball to save the Dunbar campaign.

    Note that the Assembly did much the same thing in 1997 voting to shut down Begich’s photo radar a couple days before the vote on Prop 3. It didn’t work that time either, but by just barely. Cheers –

  • If it were not so serious, I would laugh. On Monday I heard a radio ad from Mr. Dunbar accusing Mr. Bronson of wanting to do away with the “life-saving” Covid measures needed to save our economy. Since then not a peep on that note!
    I bet Dunbar will spend some more money to re-do his ads to now take credit for allowing businesses to open up!

  • This man won’t protect us from the evil virus and is far too dangerous to be elected. Vote Quimby!

  • Constant said “I witnessed various stages of commitment to the mandates and requirements that exist, 50-50 at best, and still the numbers are coming down. Deaths has ceased at this time. Hospitalization down to a couple a day.” This actually supports Allard’s assertion that people oppose the lock downs. People who support lock downs abide by mandates.

    His statement that his constituents feel unsafe going to the Assembly chambers does not specifically state that it’s because of the virus. His statements supporting the easing of mandates fly in the face of his later statements regarding his constituents reluctance to visit the Assembly chambers. Perhaps they feel unsafe due to the number of aggressive homeless people that congregate in Midtown which seems to keep growing. The number of them by Century 16, the parking lot of The Natural Pantry and in front of the Frontier building is concerning. Although, living downtown you’d think they’d be used to homeless people fighting each other, screaming profanities, shooting up and crapping on the streets.

    If this Assembly spend a fraction of the amount of time working for the people of Anchorage who actually pay the property taxes rather than pandering to a community which, in large part, does not want to be helped, Anchorage would be a far better place to live. Like J2tMFK, I too was born and raised here, raised my own family and my grandchildren are here now. Anchorage’s survival has one shot left; Dave Bronson. I don’t see how it can survive under leftist leadership without devolving into a Seattle/Portland/SanFran hellscape.

  • Hey Guys remember? The Domed City? It’s like that! I’m getting tired of the new cardboard photos of Forrest every day. The cardboard is getting bigger and bigger too. UGG.

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