Alaska Rep. Mary Peltola is crisscrossing the state with campaign meet-and-greets this week, just days after a glossy mailer was sent from her official office, paid for by taxpayers, and customized by region, extolling the virtues of her first 18 months in office.
Her campaign launch started in Fairbanks on Monday, with both Fairbanks and North Pole on Tuesday’s schedule, Eagle River on Wednesday, Palmer on Thursday, Anchorage on Friday, and Juneau on Saturday.
She also sent a text message to all voters in Alaska on Monday, asking them to donate to her campaign.
Peltola has transitioned the look of her campaign website. Before, she went with a light blue color with brown, the exact colors used by the Alaska Democratic Party’s website. Now, she’s using a rusty red, perhaps in an effort to disassociate with the party and influence voters to see her as not a Democrat.
Other changes including moving her deputy communications director, Shannon Mason, completely out of the official congressional office and into the campaign office, where she now serves as the communication director for the campaign. It’s not surprising: Mason has been drawing a Peltola campaign salary since September. Peltola’s official office chief of staff, Anthony McParland, was also paid over $46,000 from the campaign last year, in addition to his $139,000 taxpayer-funded salary.
Mason has a good relationship with the liberal stable of reporters who follow Alaska. The mainstream media, in general, has been highly helpful to Peltola from the start.
Although she votes with Democrat Nancy Pelosi 90% of the time, Peltola’s campaign rollout ad only refers to Republicans who are dead, specifically the late Sen. Ted Stevens. She says, “To hell with politics…,” a line she borrowed from the late senator, who was a lifelong Republican.
Nowhere in her campaign rollout does she mention her endorsement of Joe Biden for president or her dozens of votes for Queens, N.Y. Rep. Hakeem Jeffries for House Speaker, or any of her Democrat fundraisers held for Outside politicians. She doesn’t mention she got First Lady Jill Biden and Secretary of Interior Deb Haaland to come to Bethel for an event, or that she flew on Air Force One back to the nation’s capital after an appearance with President Biden.
According to Republican candidate Nick Begich, Peltola is polling with 42% of Alaskans supporting her. She needs 50% plus 1 in order to win in November, and she has at least $1 million in her campaign account.
Some of her bigger campaign expenditures from last year include Strategies 360 of Washington, which has reorganized under Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, and NWF Strategies of California, which represents climate activists and anti-Israel political candidates.