The next ten years? A reason to vote - Must Read Alaska
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Saturday, October 23, 2021
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The next ten years? A reason to vote

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Ten years ago today, Nov. 4, 2008, a national General Election was conducted. Barack Obama was elected president and here in Alaska, my father, Sen. Ted Stevens, was defeated in his bid to continue serving Alaska in the U.S Senate.

To revisit the results of that election is difficult and disturbing on many levels and, without question to me, the beginning of the Obama Administration is overshadowed by the means by which my father was defeated in that election.

Ted Stevens was a dedicated public servant, his life was devoted to making our nation and our state and better place for us to live, to work and to enjoy our individual rights.

His dedication spanned  from serving in during WWII, to working on the Alaska Statehood Compact, being a member of the Alaska Legislature and serving for over 40 distinguished years in the US. Senate.

Sen. Ted Stevens at the Alaska-Siberia World War II Memorial in Fairbanks, honoring the pilots who flew aircraft from continental United States to Siberia via Alaska as part of the Lend-Lease program.

The root core belief of Ted Stevens’ service was to defend our individual rights to insure that government policies and actions protect those rights and did not encroach nor restrict those rights.

In 2008, we witnessed actions in that election against him that were motivated by individual self-interest, actions by a political party lusting for a super majority and actions by their supporting organizations that would discard all legal and moral processes just to win an election, just to attain power.

It was painful and disheartening to witness then, and even more to watch those same individuals and organizations trying to manipulate the election process again now.

This week we have the opportunity to exercise our individual right to vote. Our votes will impact how our state is to be managed over the next decade.

Please be sure to give consideration to the individuals and organizations seeking your vote  in this election. What is their motive? Is it self-serving or does their platform focus on supporting individual rights? Do they stand for job creation through responsible resource development or empowering government agencies to increase regulations and taxes on our existing industries?

In 2018, just as in 2008 we have participants in this election that will exercise any means just to win.  They lust for power, for all the wrong reasons.

Ben Stevens served in the Alaska State Senate, representing District N from 2001-2006. He is the son of the late Sen. Ted Stevens, who was the longest serving member of the Senate until his defeat in the 2008 General Election.

[Read more about Ted Stevens at the Ted Stevens Foundation]

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Written by

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

  • Well said. I have a great appreciation for Sen Stevens.

  • Ted Steven’s was a great man , protected Alaska from outside interest . He cared about Alaskan’s and America . What they did to him was lie , they ran with the lie , just like they did with Judge Kavanugh . Bunch of self serving ,self interest . It is so sad .

  • Our son was interning for Ted when they raided his office. Sen. Stevens’ reaction was to gather his young interns and protect them, same as he protected our country and the citizens of Alaska. We will never forget and will forever support Sen. Stevens.

    Thank you for sharing this reminder.

  • All one has to look at is the chaos of the last 4 years and its not hard to make your vote count. Turn coats have to be defeated and return our state to HONEST, TRANSPARENT politics. 4 years is enough of the socialist movement attempting to take our GREAT STATE OVER!

  • Well written piece. Maybe there is hope for Ben. It’s scary how much likeness is to Ted.

  • Senator Ben Stevens is gracious and does not mention that the same individual is at the center of both the 2008 drama and the current scene. Mr. Begich, at the personal level, is a good person. Sadly, many of those that surround him are NOT good people and seek to exploit Alaska and Alaskans for their own gain. Even worse, national forces want to use Alaska to achieve their goal of a comprehensive and smothering social welfare state BY ANY MEANS NECESSARY. Please, Alaska, do not be fooled.

    • There are none good but one, and he is King of Kings. Begich is a sinner just like every other man, and possibly even more so.

  • It was a terrible crime what happened to Ted Stevens. I never doubted the charges against him were bogus the whole time.

  • Many people on the right would disagree when you look at the results of Uncle Ted’s actions on both ANILCA and the 90/10 revenue split. In recent years, more and more economic power has been concentrated in fewer and fewer hands. As a result, a lot of people are being shut out of opportunities simply due to their beliefs or who they associate with. Many of those in or close to my generation who may have dreamed of being the next Cap Lathrop or the next Wally Hickel have had to leave Alaska in order to pursue such dreams. Regardless, a number of our political “leaders” during the past ten years have surely made Stevens supporters out of former Stevens detractors.

  • Senator Stevens was convicted by a jury. However, prosecutorial misconduct got the decision removed by AG Holder. Think of that. Obama helped Stevens.

    • The jury convicted him without hearing all the available evidence. The justice department got caught witholding exculpatory evidence. C’mon man…think!

  • While not disputing that Stevens was an Alaskan hero, pointing out that revising history to make it that prosecution was by a democratic admin rather than the Bush DOJ is not honest seems necessary here. The dismissal of the conviction by jury was by Obama AG Holder.

    When questioning Telecom regs thru Steven’s office, we never got an answer that was researched or had any accurracy. Answers always had a GCI favoritism. Murkowski’s answers are prompt, logical, and researched. Begich staff has never answer a question, only email for money.

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