Irony alert: Alaskans for ‘Better’ Elections complains that Alaskans for ‘Honest’ Elections is dishonest

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2096

Alaskans for Better Elections, the dark-money group that convinced Alaskans to approve open primaries and ranked choice voting, lodged a formal complaint with the Alaska Public Offices Commission Wednesday, accusing four organizations and two individuals of committing over two dozen violations of campaign finance laws.

The alleged infractions pertain to the groups who are trying to repeal Alaska’s open primary and ranked choice voting system.

The complaint was made against Alaskans for Honest Elections, Alaskans for Honest Government, Ranked Choice Education Association, Wellspring Ministries, Phillip Izon, and Art Mathias. The violations cited in the complaint include:

  1. Wellspring Ministries, an Anchorage church, providing financial support to the campaign activities of the Ranked Choice Education Association without disclosing such assistance.
  2. The Ranked Choice Education Association, recently established as a “church” in the State of Washington, purportedly engaging in activities resembling a ballot group, while concealing donor identities and potentially obtaining illegal tax deductions.
  3. Alaskans for Honest Elections allegedly channeling funds through the Ranked Choice Education Association while failing to disclose their donors and expenditures.
  4. Alaskans for Honest Government operating as an unregistered ballot group, violating the requirements set forth by election regulations.
  5. Philip Izon reportedly reporting fictitious contributions totaling over $200,000, potentially undermining the transparency of campaign finance records.
  6. Multiple instances of failing to properly register with APOC, disclose donors, and report expenditures.

The complaint, filed by election attorney Scott Kendall, comes at a time when Alaskans for Honest Elections appears to have gotten more than half of the signatures the group needs to get the repeal on the ballot next year. However, legal hurdles are ahead, because if the group does get all the signatures, Kendall and Alaskans for Better Elections will surely tie the ballot language up in court. The Alaskans for Better Elections group, once it was successful at the ballot in 2020, formed up as a permanent organization to defend the open primary and ranked choice voting method that statewide elections now fall under.

The ballot measure was sold to voters as a way to get dark money out of politics, but the dark money rules don’t apply to the organization itself.

In fact, Alaskans for Better Elections is funded by Outside dark money associated with hard-leftist causes. According to OpenSecrets.org, as of May 2023, Alaskans for Better Elections received $300,000 from Unite America, a political action committee based in Denver that supports electoral reform efforts to the benefit of left-wing candidates. Unite America is active in other states to replicate what it did in Alaska with the help of Alaskans for Better Elections, which is a pro-Sen. Lisa Murkowski group.

In the 2020 election cycle, when Alaskans for Better Elections was able to rewrite Alaska’s election laws through the ballot measure it pushed, Unite America gave the group almost $2.9 million, with an another $500,000 from the Unite America Reform Fund.

Alaskans for Honest Elections is funded primarily from individual Alaska donors. It registered with APOC in January to try for a ballot initiative to undo much of what Alaskans for Better Elections has accomplished. But Alaskans for Honest Elections is up against a group with nearly unlimited access to cash and aggressive legal counsel. Alaskans for Honest Elections could now see its bank account drained by having to defend itself.

APOC, an independent regulatory agency responsible for overseeing campaign financing and lobbying activities in Alaska, will investigate the alleged violations. If the allegations are substantiated, the organizations and individuals involved could face financial penalties. If the complaints are found to be without merit, Alaskans for Honest Elections has no recourse for collecting attorney fees and other expenditures from Alaskans for Better Elections.

The complaint in full:

59 COMMENTS

  1. Well if more people don’t get off their butts and sign the petition books, Alaska will be stuck with garbage elections and losers like Peddler Peltoa.

    • Where are they collecting signatures??????? I can volunteer! EVERYONE I KNOW REGARDLESS OF PARTY WANTS THIS RANK CHOICE VOTING SCAM OVER!!!!! EVERYONE! We ran a restaurant and met and talked to many people and I NEVER talked to a single individual who thought this was actually a good idea. Sure makes me wonder how it actually happened? You know kind of like the night of our 2020 Presidential election when at midnight it was in the bag for Trump. I went to bed so thankful that people got off there a$$ to vote for a second term. Woke the next morning to see a man who doesn’t know sick em from come here as our president????? W T F

      • Lori, you can email me dlp1951 @ gmail . com if you’re having trouble finding a petition to sign or want more info on getting a petition book. I’m not in charge of the effort but I know how you can get more info
        Dave
        Kenai

    • Just the irony of the organization supposed to promote rcv and jungle primary was supposed to eliminate dark money IS an outside dark money organization. Who knows what their donors are.

      • Sapper, what about the other 3 organizations? Where is there money coming from? And where is there money going? The full complaint with APOC indicates all of this may have just been a way to funnel money to a couple of individuals. There’s a lot more to come from this, and regardless of how you feel about RCV, we should all be able to agree that transparency and only tactics that are legal should be employed to promote political causes and ballot measures.

        • Don’t donate, simple enough. Just eliminate aptly named BM2.
          Sign the petition and vote to void the measure. No money involved.

        • Don’t donate, simple enough. Just eliminate aptly named BM2.
          Sign the petition and vote to void the measure. No money involved. I notice you completely avoided the outside dark money issue. May I assume you might be part of that?

  2. Progressives always accuse others of the things they (Progressives) are actually doing.

  3. The petition backers created their own problem presenting a 33-page POS to repeal a 20+ page POS when a 3 sentence repeal initiative was all that was needed. You can pack a lot of mischief in 33 pages of garbage that nobody will read, and I expect they have. They were sufficiently arrogant to ignore warnings that they were on the wrong path during the creation of their initiative, taking the my way or the highway stance. Cheers –

  4. Never listen to a complainer, whom only wants attention. Plus they only complain over what everyone else is doing while they do it themselves. It’s like at work coworkers complaining so-so are not doing such-such while I witnessed them doing the same.

  5. Sounds like the author is very biased. I for one, feel like rank choice voting finally allowed my voice to be heard and not smothered by ALT-right wing agendas and mumbo jumbo.

    • Educate yourself. RCV did NOTHING that you claim. How did RCV ‘allow my voice to be heard’? And what alt right agendas are you referring to? Unless you get wise, YOU will remain part of the problem.

    • Why do you feel that, Danielle?
      If ALT-right mumbo jumbo is really mumbo jumbo, how does that, in any way, affect you? How did altering the voting system allow your voice to be heard?
      .
      Or are you a fan of it because the candidate you wanted benefited from the system?

  6. I will do all possible to get rid of rank choice and black money. We don’t need any help or change with the way elections have been for the last 50 years. I will sign the petition and get all of my friends to sign.

  7. Wow, those rank-choice rats are REALLY fighting hard to defend their corrupt, opaque, and patently manipulable voting system! But as we have seen countless times in just the past few years, radical leftists and pro-establishment quislings (but I repeat myself) will go to ANY length to hold onto, and expand, their power. That is just what evil sociopaths do.

  8. Likely most accusations baseless and explainable but an effort to slow down and hinder a democratic process, as the skewed attorney is so good at. Scott Kendall truly is a proverbial piece of work. Seems a counter suit is in order as what fun it would be to disclose and trace all the moneys flowing in to “Better Elections” (complete oxymoron). Sadly Mr. Kendall will some day ‘meet his maker’ and face the unavoidable rude awakening.

  9. Alaska’s leftist judicial system will decide this issue for us, and continue to instruct us about what we are allowed to do, say, think, and believe.

  10. If Alaskans for Better Elections really thought their system was better, they would not have to sue or use lawfare to stop any efforts to repeal it. Simple advertising promoting the benefits is all that would be needed.

  11. Commissioner Kelly Tshibaka wrote a 110 page document about an election audit. Did the document address anything about accuracy of Alaska’s election data, our voter rolls, problematic areas within our election system, etc? What is needed is copy of all the 110 page document so we can read the black print on all the 110 white pages.

    Senator Shower introduced SB 39 in 2022. Please take time to read his sponsor statement.
    ‘https://www.akleg.gov/basis/Bill/Detail/32?Root=SB%2039

    Alaskans need integrity in our election system and judicial reform. Please sign the petition book!

  12. The best we can do at this point is to have RCV on the ballot in 2024. If we don’t have that on the ballot to vote it down, this is going to be a disaster. Suzanne, if Kendall wins in court, does this negate all our signatures and ballot option?

    • It might. His complaint is over 150 pages. He has all the money he needs from Outside forces to fight this. – sd

  13. If it has Scott Kendall’s name on it, you can bet it’s all lies, smoke and mirrors. He’s the most dishonest person in Alaska. And he’s really not that good either. He couldn’t save his former, disgraced boss, Bill Walker. He couldn’t save his idiot brother-in-law, Grier Hopkins, up in Fairbanks either. Thank you, Suzanne for once again exposing this creepy, political skalliwag.

    • Scott Kendall is far over-rated as an attorney. So bad in fact, that’s why he resorts to political shenanigans as a side hustle. His wife is the same and they both work as left wing extremists in the same Anchorage law firm. His wife comes from a dysfunctional political family up in Fairbanks, where the entire family is tied up in Lefty Democrat politics. Lately, Scott Kendall hadn’t done much for their cause, especially now that everyone knows who the Hopkins family is related to.

      • @Naomi:
        Good points. Up here in Fairbanks, the Newsminer has had two front-page color photos of Scott Kendall’s brother Grier Hopkins in less than one week. Dumb photos, holding signs for the teacher’s union where he works. Hopkins lost his race to a Republican challenger last year, but he still gets top coverage. Rumor is that Hopkins is going to run for an Assembly seat or borough mayor in Fairbanks. Expect Scott Kendall involved in that race too. Republicans are getting ready to go after Hopkins with their own candidate, yet
        to be announced. Time to kick Kendall’s *ss.
        And his brother.

      • He’s so overrated he forced this on all of us, is a sought out political operative, and the person people turn to when they want an amoral shark on their side.

        Hate him all you want, but don’t deny his ability to move behind the scenes here.

        Kendall has done more to shape the future of Alaska than the last 6 governors combined.

        • LOL…..the shape of Alaska is looking like a giant, steamy dog turd, MA. Kendall’s mark.
          It fits.

  14. Kendall et al need to butt out and let this go on the ballot if enough signatures are gathered. If this gets on the ballot watch & see. There will be so much money coming up from the lower 48 & DC to fight it they’ll need to put it on a barge to get it here.

    But we might not be having to worry about all this had our state legislators from the districts which voted against RCV all stood strong together and brought the proposed RCV repeal legislation to a general vote this past session. Even if it had failed that would have been better than simply squashing the legislation so it wasn’t even considered by the whole. Somebody(s) had other agendas though.

    And you should look at Mr. Kendall’s Twitter profile. It’s a mime of a guy who makes it his business to punch Nazi’s.That word gets thrown a lot these days. So I guess if you support repeal of RCV you’re a Nazi.

  15. Kendall thinks he is a leader but he is a troublemaker than needs a new direction. He is worse than herpes

  16. Well, if money is what it takes to win day, there should be no problem: flood out the opposition and quit complaining!

  17. Unite America gets most of their funding from the Murdoch family, through Rupert Murdoch’s daughter-in-law Kathryn Murdoch, of New York. They are a group that pushes for a hard left agenda, mainly through litigation. They know that their agenda cannot gain public support, and they know they cannot defend it in debate. Instead, they find sleazy lawyers like Kendall to push it through the courts. They know that all they need to do is make it to the liberal-owned judiciary, and they’re home free. Sadly, this has become a trend all over the country. – M.John

  18. Will we never be rid of the notorious Scott Kendall? Too bad there is not a Siberia to send him to. And when will people realize that ranked choice voting is the way that weak candidates can combine to defeat a front runner, which it was supposed to do in the last gubernatorial election? Could we interest Scott in a one-way trip to California, where he could engage in his liberal fantasies for the rest of his life? There he could see a real woke state in action, where over 40% want to leave.

    • Nope. Why should he leave? He’s the real power in Alaska.

      I’d love to see Must Read do a really deep investigation into him.

      Anyone this sleazy has skeletons. By the truckload.

      • Avenger, I join you in hoping for a real deep investigation of Kendall. All the sleaze that is fit to print and more. There has to be at least a ton of skeletons in there somewhere.

  19. You all should read the complaint. This Izon / Mathias group is either super dodgy or wildly incompetent. They incorporated a religious non-profit in Washington for this effort. It’s easy enough to look up in the WA corporation database. Was it for a tax write-off or did they just not know what they were doing? It looks bad. APOC will certainly be investigating.

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