ALL OF ANCHORAGE GOT ITS BELLY-LAUGH FRIDAY MORNING
It’s down to the wire for campaigns, and every last nerve is frayed in the various races around the state. Election Day is just four days away.
But no nerve seems to be more frayed than the last jangled nerve of AFL-CIO boss Vince Beltrami. It’s been a bruising season.
Beltrami went on KWHL radio for a two-segment interview on Friday, during which he lashed out at candidate Mike Dunleavy, Dunleavy for Alaska, this writer, talk show host Dave Stieren, and Alaska Republican Party Chairman Tuckerman Babcock in what was an epic rant for the ages. All this was to help Mark Begich become governor.
What has the AFL-CIO boss so upset? After backing Gov. Bill Walker this summer, he and his union had to quickly switch their allegiance (and remaining campaign money) to supporting Begich for governor, after Walker did a mic drop on the election.
All the business agents had unanimously endorsed Walker, and when Walker walked, they then unanimously endorsed Begich, the Democrat.
It was a scramble, however, after Oct. 19. They already had spent a lot of money on Walker. The October Surprise ended up being on them, instead of on Dunleavy, and this was not going according to plan.
But the one thing Beltrami has is guys with drills and lumber. Earlier this week, Beltrami and his union help erected signs all over Anchorage stating that “Dunleavy Voted Against Our PFD.”
But it’s backfired on him. Anchorage woke up to a cold crisp morning Thursday, and a laugh that stuck with them all day. And on Friday, it got even better.
The talk of Anchorage political circles is the lightning quick response of the Dunleavy for Alaska team, which, within 24 hours, had posted small signs next to Beltrami’s big signs. The small signs were bust-a-gut funny.
Dunleavy for Alaska — not associated with the actual campaign — felt free to post its commentary signs because Beltrami and the AFL-CIO had placed their large signs in the public right-of-way, rather than private property. There was simply no need to ask the property owner permission to post the little meme signs that had an oversized impact.
The first sign, written about earlier on this site, said “Fake News,” with an arrow pointing at the big sign.
Soon, others sign commentary followed, starring “Dwight” from “The Office” sitcom series, and Bill Lundburgh from Office Space:
As if dealing with Dunleavy for Alaska’s taking the digital meme concept into the physical world wasn’t hard enough on Beltrami, the union boss then piled on by commenting on the Must Read Alaska story link on Facebook about the “Fake News” sign caper, sparring with other readers and disparaging the comical capers of the Dunleavy for Alaska team.
Beltrami called the Permanent Fund Dividend “free government money,” and then, well, you’ll just have to read the exchange for yourself…