Peltola — lawmaker or lawbreaker? North Pole school visit looked like illegal campaign event

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Maybe it’s how they do things in Washington, D.C. these days. But in Alaska, it’s still against the law to campaign in a publicly funded school during school hours.

Rep. Mary Peltola launched her reelection campaign this week and wasted no time hitting the halls and classrooms of North Pole High School, where she invited students to take pictures with her and where she had in tow a camera crew of two to get campaign material for her fliers and website. She also had her campaign manager Anton McParland, who is also her official office’s chief of staff, making both an official salary of well over six figures and a substantial salary from the campaign.

By Alaska statutes, she appears to have broken the law. Politicians are not allowed to campaign on school campuses during school hours.

The Democrat was accompanied by another Democrat candidate — Fairbanks North Star Borough mayoral candidate Grier Hopkins, who posted a photo to his campaign Facebook page of the two candidates, side by side, unabashedly campaigning during school hours. Although it was not his own campaign event, Hopkins was piggybacking on the representative and may have also been breaking the law, since he used the photo in his social media post.

The event was advertised for the school library, but the two politicians toured the school, popped into classrooms to talk to students and visited the automotive class, where Hopkins took the selfie.

Photo credit: Grier Hopkins for Borough Mayor Facebook page.

Alaska Statute says school districts that use their facilities for partisan activities during school hours shall be denied funding.

North Pole is a conservative stronghold in Alaska. Of the 6,256 votes cast in the U.S. Representative race during the general election in 2022, Peltola received 1,563.

Thus, it made no sense for Peltola to set up a meet-and-greet in the conservative town, but rather to take advantage of a captive audience of non-voters and their teachers during school hours, to emphasize her affinity for the National Education Association teachers union, which endorses her and provides her with substantial funding. The education industry represented her fourth-top source of campaign funds in 2022 and the NEA supported her campaign with $10,000.

41 COMMENTS

  1. I absolutely hate it when Public Servants are called Law Makers, they are nor elected to exercise power over the People. She is supposed to be a Representative of the People of Alaska, not a Representative of the Globalist Left.

  2. Mary and Grier may have another problem here.
    This is a school and the vast majority of students are still minors. I not familiar with the photo policy for the Fairbanks school district, but generally parents have a say, when, where and for what purpose their student’s image can be taken or displayed, while at school. Walking around with a film crew during school hours, capturing images of student indiscriminately and then displaying them to the public, may be a violation of students privacy and Fairbanks school district policy.

  3. She’s a Democrat. We know that laws do not apply to Democrats in Washington DC. We’ll see if Democrats are exempt from Alaska law??????

  4. Not as much as a wrist slap will occur. I would not wish my children to be exposed to such things, legal or not. Was it an optional event?

  5. Grier Hopkins was defeated in his House race in 2022, thanks to redistricting. Hopkins is a candidate for FNSB mayor in 2024, and he currently works for the local teacher’s union. He’s never had a job outside of politics, thanks to his mommie and daddie, former mayor Luke Hopkins.
    Grier Hopkin’s uncle is Assembly member David Guttenberg, Luke’s wife’s (Elise) brother. Luke and Elise’s daughter is married to Scott Kendall, one of the biggest Left-wing political disrupters ever, in Alaska’s history. The Hopkins political farm is full of barn animals and their dubious antecedents. Complaints and lawsuits for blatant campaign violations against Mary Peltola should be dutifully extended to candidate Grier Hopkins, and prosecuted to the full extent allowed. Scott Kendall will have his hands full with his extended family up in Fairbanks……a place that can truly be considered creeped with
    unusual suspects.

    • Thanks, Marla for tying up all the lose ends. Wow! What a family tree of corruption! What is the old saying? Birds of a feather flock together, proved here.

        • Yippee!
          timinwasilla is finally realizing that Saudi Arabia is run by a family and nepotism is their bread and butter…… I suppose it is an apt comparison to Grier Hopkins and the gang.

      • Hopkins, Guttenberg, Kendall. Different names to hide the true facts. All related. All Left-wing wackos. All hellbent on globalism, climate activism, radical politics. ALL Democrats.

        • These are all Scott Kendall’s relatives? Jesus, I feel sorry for the poor b*stards in Fairbanks. Government run by a crooked Democrat family under the tutelage of Scott Kendall. The low hanging fruit must be rotten.

  6. Just what Fairbanks needs: another stupid Democrat mayor who can’t spell. See Hopkin’s Facebook post. What an idiot.

  7. Nothing will happen to them. They won’t even say they’re sorry because they “didn’t know. They are democrats. if it was republicans doing this, boy it would be front page news

  8. What a delightfully absurd notion, the State witholding money from Alaska’s education industry.
    .
    More fun, and more likely to happen, would be watching fallout from all the complaints filed with the Federal Election Commission.
    .
    Let’s absolutely not tell Madam Editor, but we have to wonder what might go down if a couple hundred copies of this article accidentally showed up as individual complaints at the Federal Election Commission.
    .
    FEC complaint process is simple, It’s explained at fec.gov/legal-resources/enforcement/complaints-process/how-to-file-complaint-with-fec/.
    .
    “By law, all complaints must be made in writing and must provide the full name and address of the person filing the complaint (the “complainant”). They must be signed, sworn to, and notarized, meaning that the notary’s certificate must state that the complaint was “signed and sworn to before me” or must indicate that the complainant affirmed the complaint “under penalty of perjury.” Complaints must be sent to the FEC at:
    .
    (if using U.S. mail)
    Office of General Counsel
    Federal Election Commission
    1050 First Street, NE
    Washington, DC 20463
    .
    (if using delivery services like FedEx, UPS, DHL)
    Office of General Counsel
    Federal Election Commission
    1050 First Street, NE
    Washington, DC 20002″

  9. ‘Reading, ‘righting, ‘rithmatic’? . . . Shouldn’t the second ‘R’ be ‘riting’, as in ‘writing’? It looks like Mr. Grier needs a refresher course on spelling to go along with a course on state law.

    • Hopkins is like his dad, a former carpenter at the UAF who couldn’t pound a nail straight in or saw a clean 2×4 without supervision. Then he gets elected mayor. Go figure. Both are union controlled puppets.

  10. Schools seem to be where the liberals gather. Counterintuitive to find the dumbest people in a school but the facts speak for themselves and the poor performance of our teachers in educating our children just puts an exclamation mark on it. Noticed it at UAF…if a student couldn’t cut it in a real program they ended up in the education department. Pay your money, do your time and then it’s out into the real world to ruin young minds for pretty good pay and benefits while whining nonstop about how hard teaching is.

  11. I am a student at NPHS- she took a tour of the CTE (Career Technical Education) to understand how the students of North Pole use their education they receive here to give back to the state of Alaska, (oil field, welding, woodworking and automotive work). Absolutely uninformed article.

    • Dear young person, you may have been told that this was a “tour” to see what great things you are accomplishing at NPHS by a sitting US representative. However her social media announcement made it very clear that her purpose was a “meet and greet” for the general public and a political campaign event, which is by law prohibited during school hours. Mary Peltola chose your school as a prop for her own gains. She invited the public to your school library during school hours, with no concern for the number of people traipsing through your school and interrupting your learning day.
      I understand that it is flattering to get such a visit, but ask yourself why she needed a camera crew to learn what you do at NPHS. Do you feel comfortable with your picture on her campaign website?
      Voting is all about critical thinking and analyzing candidates and their stand on issues, as well as their actions/votes while in office. At the same time one needs to avoid being dazzled by their nice smile and projected popularity (camera crew anyone).
      I strongly encourage you to do a bit more research before you accuse others of being uninformed.

    • Grier Hopkins likes hanging with these kids. I saw his picture in the Newsminer with high schoolers during some kind of kiddie protest. He was the only adult in the photo. And now this. I hope his competitor makes note of this. It may be a concern for parents.

  12. According to the Supreme Court ruling in 2018 Janis V. AFSCME, government employees such as teachers. etc/ were not required to be in a union or pay union dues and or union fees and could still keep their jobs. Unions that force dues and membership are breaking this Supreme Court ruling. Government employees should have control over their earnings/salaries. Money shall not be deducted automatically or by forgery by union leaders. The use of this money by the NEA and other unions takes away the free speech rights of the rank and file union members. Peltola, Hopkins and others who cheat their way into office using forced dues or who forge the names of the rank and file members, do not represent the citizens of Alaska but their own personal agendas against Alaskan citizens. Hopkins and Peltola are only two of many who have used union dues to pay for their campaigns. Those members have had no voice.

  13. Anyone notice that the school that has the funding risks is a conservative stronghold? That’s two for two for the democrats. They didn’t put their own majority schools at risk for lack of funding. Sneaky, aren’t they?

  14. What’s with this Hopkins character showing up at Fairbanks area high schools? Hutchinson High. North Pole High. Grooming sessions for young, impressionable, future Democrat voters?

    • Someone isn’t giving Hopkins good campaign advice. Makes you wonder is his brother-in-law, Scott Kendall, really wants him to win. Coghill should have a field day with this info.

  15. Governor Walker went to Mountain View Elementary in Kenai to get photos with our students and talk with teachers for votes! It was arranged by our old principal who volunteered on his campaign.

  16. I wish Ms. Peltola would represent Alaska more like the person I knew 20-25 years ago. She seems to listen only to her far left advisers and not to the heart of what Alaska needs.

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