Pro-fish or primarily pro-tribe? Critics say Peltola shows true goal as congresswoman for some, not all Alaskans


Is Mary Peltola really the pro-fish candidate? What does pro-fish mean, when the ultimate intent is to not put salmon in a wildlife refuge, but conserve a resource so you can kill the fish, slice them up, and eat them?

According to some in the fishing crowd in Kodiak last week, Peltola misses the mark when it comes to fishing, as an economy and as a way of life for many Alaskans. Not al were impressed with her at the Kodiak candidate forum focused on fishing.

Before she left Washington, D.C. at the end of September, Peltola, the Democrat congresswoman finishing Congressman Don Young’s term, voted in the House Natural Resources Committee to authorize a rewrite of the Magnuson Stevens Act with an important added provision: Bycatch would be banned, so severely curtailed that critics claim a judge could rule that commercial fishing itself could be shut down, depending on what environmentalist litigants want.

Judges such as Alaska Federal District Judge Sharon Gleason do that all the time, these days: They shut down resource harvesting in obedience to the environmental litigation industry.

The rewrite of the act is called the Sustaining America’s Fisheries for the Future Act, and it has not yet passed Congress. If it does pass, it’s a gift wrapped in a bow to groups like the Natural Resources Defense Council, EarthJustice, and other litigious eco-extremists that have long fought to shut down commercial fishing in Alaska. Groups like PETA, which don’t want any fishing at all, would love this legislation.

At the Fish Debate in Kodiak last week, Congresswoman Peltola talked about the importance of her work to preserve fish and the fight against climate change. It’s on all of her campaign literature and it was the focus of her short few days in Washington, D.C. as Alaska’s temporary congresswoman.

During that time, she advanced legislation that adds two tribal members to an 11-member North Pacific Fisheries Management Council. Not Filipinos, nor African-American Alaskans. Just tribal members, in a return to race-based quotas. Not even tribal members from Washington state — just Alaska tribes.

She voted in favor of the draconian bycatch law that will not only ensnare the trawlers in the Bering Sea and Gulf of Alaska, but could be used against family-owned fishing businesses.

Sarah Palin, also a candidate for Congress, praised Peltola for her work in Congress, which Palin did not seem to realize has such a dire legal consequence for Alaska’s largest independent private business sector. Palin said that without having the bill before her, she couldn’t really speak to the specifics.

Candidate Nick Begich said that, with all due respect, he’s for fishermen and women, and he said that means protecting fisheries is ultimately about protecting Alaskans and their way of life.

“The fact that this [Magnuson rewrite] is being led by a California congressman, and this is his version of a vision for coastal Alaska does not sit well with me,” said Begich.

The rewrite of Magnuson-Stevens Act was authored by Democrat U.S. Reps. Jared Huffman and Ed Case, both adherents to the climate change religious order. Huffman has long been an advocate for locking up Alaska’s coastal plain of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, and ending oil and gas as an economic sector in Alaska. Now he’s attacking Alaska’s fishing economy, and Peltola appears ready to help him.


  1. I’m native, grew up in the bush, I don’t support her or anyone who is a democrat, they are destroying the USA and are pro communist, look around you at the schools, the huge numbers of homeless, the high price of food, rent and fuel, thank a democrat for that.

  2. She’s in Congress strictly to help her own people and advance their needs. That’s it.
    Begich #1.
    Palin #2.
    Peltola NO RANK.
    Rank the Red
    This is the full strategy for Republicans to win back the House seat.

    • Luvin it! Beat these wacko Democrats at their own silly games. RCV can actually work for Republicans if the strategy is played together by Republicans and Conservatives.

    • I’m not falling for your establishment ploy, Paul ol’ boy. Rank the Red, eh? I’m playing for keeps. No more Mr. Nice Guy: Sarah, or none at all! She will get the vote without trying to jimmy the machines or playing footsies with the “good boys!”

      • Democrat troll comment, above. This comment is so obvious, it bleeds. Democrats know they are about to lose their little gal Peltola. I didn’t vote for anyone else but Begich last time. This time I will rank Sarah number two, just to keep Peltola out of the congressional seat. Most Republicans and Conservatives will now do this as they see the Democrats start to run scared. Just ignore comments as seen above. They are desperate.

      • That’s called “cutting off your nose to spite your face” and is a fool’s folly. Go ahead and bask in your own self righteousness by not ranking your choices red. You’ll smugly help put a Democrat in office. People like you are just faux conservatives.

  3. Congresswoman Peltola, whom I know somewhat well, is a wonderful person but her focus is entirely through a lens that doesn’t see anyone who is not at least part Alaska Native or Native American. She believes the Second Amendment is entirely about subsistence hunting (urban people in Anchorage and Fairbanks need not have guns, better they don’t). Non-natives should not have limited entry commercial fishing permits in her view. The first task of federal employees in Alaska is to protect Alaska Natives from Alaskans who are not Native even if those Alaskans have been here for generations. She says in one of her latest ads that she supports developing Alaska’s natural resources but she is completely cold on mining except if the developer and landowner is a Native corporation. Peltola has no balance, and were she even slightly to the other side of center she would be called a racist; if one is part Native or part Black they cannot be racist no matter their viewpoint. We should not have someone representing us in the US Congress who uses this lens.

    • You expect us to believe your collection of BS about Mary Peltola? It is you who is unbalanced if you think your diatribe here will influence even the crazies on here.
      Tough noogies to you Kayak.

      • You have absolutely no idea what a crook lunatic this lady of many husbands and tax money for her from our tax dollars she is. You have never lived in a village for 20 plus years.

        • I have. It’s tough to find a good man in the village. There are a few, but they’re already married. I know a woman with five kids who got the crap beat out of her a month or so ago and she went on Facebook and posted pictures and said I’m done I finally seen the light. Guess what she’s back with him.

      • “You expect us to believe your collection of BS about Mary Peltola?……..”
        Are we supposed to believe anything we read in the media, who were paid to broadcast it?

    • Peltola got to flirt with DC Dems for a couple months. But the majority of Alaskans don’t roll with racist Native women who want to shut out resource development and preserve the state for Natives only.
      Nick Begich 1
      Sarah Palin 2.

  4. So, let’s rewrite the act to do one thing – make fish extremely expensive. When no one can afford any type pf meat then these loons have reached their goal: Average people eating nothing but plant based food, produced with GMO ingredients. You will be brainwashed to believe that you’re saving the planet, all the while the elites enjoy a world you used to live in.

    • Yes, isn’t it odd that the interest of the incredibly wealthy globalist and democrats always line up exactly. And isn’t it odd that democrats are always funded by scads of “dark” money coming from organizations backed by rich “donors” who pop up 6 months before elections happen. The very same folks pushing “climate change” and funding the “ecowarrior” class.

      Meanwhile the middle class is ground into paste, soon to lose their house, their food security and their livelihood to inflation, over-regulation and bad policy as promoted by the “nice” politicians of the left.

  5. The Republican party was founded as and remains , the anti – slavery , pro constitution party. What Andy said ! I’m white , no better than anyone else , just the hand I was dealt at birth , nothing to crow about. We all want the same things and have the same burdens. No need to invent problems Mary.

  6. I know people who are voting for for her just because she’s just a real nice person. You tell them what she stands for and supports they go yeah but she’s just a real nice lady??? I can’t make this stuff up, we as Alaskans are screwed..

    • “I know people who are voting for for her just because she’s just a real nice person……..”
      Stupidity can’t be fixed.

  7. There is no”draconian” bycatch law in the rewrite. The current meaningless weasel word phrasing that tells the NPFMC to “reduce bycatch to the practicable” is being changed to “reduce bycatch”. Nowhere does it say eliminate bycatch, this is just fear mongering. The current reg wording is just a feel good, cover your butt phrase that allows the Council to do anything, even increase bycatch, and pat themselves on the back. Canadian trawlers reduced halibut bycatch 80% in one year and caught all their trawl quotas while doing so. The NPFMC is not interested. In a recent year trawlers out of Kodiak killed over 4 times as many Bairdai tanner crab as the directed fisherman were allowed to catch. There is no bycatch limit on crab in the gulf of Alaska for trawlers. The NPFMC wants things to stay that way. The majority of the gulf trawl fleet is owned by out of state and corporate interests.

  8. Alaska Natives need to understand Ms. Peltola will vote with the leftists on nearly every issue. And the leftists want Alaska industries shut down. Do you ever wonder why they are so opposed to mining, logging, and oil? They market it to drones as “saving the environment”, but the truth is they want to destroy the traditional family. Most of those industries’ workers are men, and each good-paying job they take away from a man hurts or prevents a traditional family. Ms. Peltola’s leftist friends cozy up with Native Corps and Tribal entities and use Alaska Natives as pawns in their never-ending crusade against all that is right and good in our country. Ms. Peltola might be a friendly face and a nice lady, but she is on the leftist Anti-America, Anti-Family team. As a member of congress, she will be a force against Alaska’s best interests. A vote for her will lead our country, already on the brink of disaster, closer to total societal collapse. Although I am sickened by Sarah Palin’s never-ending quest for attention, she’s still a better choice than Peltola. My hope and prayer is that someone will shake Sarah out of the race so Begich can win the seat.

  9. She’s a Democrat. Of course she’s not acting in the interests of all Alaska. Just D Alaska.

    Nor would she be the first politician to put her “tribe” (whatever that is: race, gender, location, etc) ahead of common good.

  10. Peltola voted to end the Pension System of Alaska much to the ire of the Public Employee unions. Peltola worked for Donlin Mines. Peltola has a chance to convince the village of Nuiqsut to go along with Conoco’s Willow project rather than years of litigation. 200,000 to 300,000 barrels of oil down the pipeline with the Willow project. I like fish but I love oil revenue.

  11. Mary and Sarah might be right on this one. I just did some quick reading on this complicated subject. Looks like there are only 40 small Alaskan Trawlers, most out of Kodiak, fishing in the Alaskan Gulf. I don’t have the numbers on the outside Alaska Trawlers, but I’m sure there are MANY MORE, and they are Bigger, and better equipped.Alot of this issue revolves around Bycatch. If schools of returning Salmon are scooped up by large Trawlers, and tossed overboard as illegal Bycatch, then OUR RETURNING SALMON STOCKS, are being destroyed. The Kenai King as an example.. The smaller Alaskan Fleet can TARGET their catch better. Sarah the subsistence and Mary the subsistence fisherman see this issue much more differently than Nick, because of Real Life Experience.

    • Chinook salmon numbers have crashed from the Bering Straits all the way down to the Sacramento River in California as well along Siberia and Japan. It’s a tall order to blame by-catch, especially since NOAA has had observers on ships for years.

        • I thought you were talking recent history. I didn’t know we were going back 30 or 40 years. That’s a little before my time out there in the wild wild Southwest. I do know a couple of fishermen that fish out of chignik, and they produce the brightest, cleanest silver salmon you will ever lay your eyes On.

          • Chignik fishermen have always counted their money fish sockeye and have had poor seasons lately on them. Good thing silvers are bright and clean cause they (fishermen) are starving these days.

  12. Peltola wants Alaskan fisheries regulated for the benefit of Alaskans and thats also what clear-thinking Alaskans want.

    The author is peddling hysteria; the main “rewrite” being sought is to drop the words “to the extent practicable” from the regs because those are weasel words used by Seattle trawlers to opposed everything on court (they file lawsuits more often than they change underwear).

    Thats what “rewriting” is about, the rest of this opinion essay is an attempt to change the topic from the the rewrite to trawler propaganda.

    Peltola’s efforts are only baby steps in the fight to preserve Alaskan resources for Alaskans but the author, a trawler propagandist, can’t focus on that because the truth doesnt serve his masters’ purposes… he is struggling to make this a red v blue issue rather than “what’s best for Alaskans”.

    Don’t fall for the author’s trap; the change Peltola seeks is smart and necessary and will help Alaskans of ALL political stripes

  13. “……..What does pro-fish mean……..”
    It means the Heavens and Earth must be moved so the kings return into the Yukon. This might be a renewed alliance between the Alaska Native bloc and the environmental industry against Big Fish.

    • First you have to find a way to regulate the Chinese & North Korean trawlers – that’s where our fish have gone.

  14. Definitely not Don Young or shared his priorities for all Alaska. No to Democrats, destroyers of Alaska.

  15. I must of missed the outrage here when Dunleavy and urban Alaskans are out to destroy the family owned fishing businesses of the Kenai Peninsula. Fish politics is a tough business. Thanks to the candidates that bothered to attend the debate. Sarah at least was honest in her response. Appears Begich responded by saying nothing specific. Peltola had the courage to stand up and give a real response. Also missing was Tshibaka who felt it more important to go to a football game in Texas than discuss fishing issues with Alaskan fisherman.
    I had never heard of Jared Huffman so I looked him up. His district is not one you get reelected by destroying commercial fishing. I started to read the bill and yes there was a lot on climate change. But if you do not think climate change is adversely affecting our fisheries maybe you are to blame for trying to destroy them.
    Also maybe Nick Begich should review the original Magnuson Stevens Act. It was originally introduced by a Democrat who got Don Young to join him in a show of Bi Partisan support.

  16. The inuendo and outright BS in this story is incredible. Lots of ‘someone said’ with virtually no way to back up said hits on Mary.

    Mary Peltola understands that our most fundamental obligation regarding utilizing any of our natural resources is that we do so responsibly and sustainably. We must be accountable to our children and the generations that come after them, to ensure that they have the same opportunities to utilize any of our resources, just as so many of us do today.

    So, looking to reauthorize the Magnuson-Stevens Act and include language that will help hold trawlers more accountable to reduce bycatch should be applauded by all Alaskans. The suggestion that such language will cause harm or the end of any fishery is ridiculous. What’s going to harm or end one or another of our fisheries is taking them for granted, wasting billions of pounds of high value fishery resources and putting the burden of conservation only on subsistence, sport and small boat commercial fishermen. Which is exactly what the NPFMC and the trawl fleet are doing.

    I have no problem with adding two seats to the NPFMC for indigenous western Alaska representatives. If the present governor would simply appoint a diverse group of members that represent all aspects of Alaskan views and interests, there wouldn’t be a need to have allotted seats for any specific group. But he has chosen to turn the seats in to commodities and appoint representatives that have deep pockets, largely the trawl industry.

    Further regards adding two seats to the council for indigenous western Alaska representatives, it can’t be too bad of an idea. Kelly Tshibaka is on the record as supporting the same idea. From Alaska Public Media two days ago. “Tshibaka said that she would support a provision in the current reauthorization bill that would add two Alaska Native seats to the North Pacific council. She also supports a revision in the bill that would strike out the words “to the extent practicable” from rules limiting bycatch”.

    Hyperbole Hunter

    • Sarah Palin doesn’t count as “The Red.” Just because there is an R doesn’t mean she is a Republican.

  17. The health our Salmon Fisheries is defined by the number of returning fish to our rivers. Each year subsistence and sport fishers are the first to respond to the number of fish that have survived Running the Gauntlet. Each year the survival rate is less. If the large Trawlers fleet is not held in check, in a few years there will be no more Salmon. Predators to Salmon in Chronological Order. Trout eating Salmon eggs. Trout eating Salmon fry. Pike eating young Salmon heading to mouth of river in Springtime to reach Salt Water. Young Salmon in the ocean being eaten by Mackerel, Orcas, Seals, etc. Trawlers scooping up schools of fish as Bycatch in International Waters. Salmon returning to Alaskan waters are caught by Long Liners, Drift netter’s, and Sport boats. As they follow the shoreline to their home river, they have run through miles of Beach Setnets. If they make it to the rivers mouth there are 100s, to 1000s of Dip netter’s, once the enter the River they have to run through 1000s of sportfishers in boats and lining the shoreline shoulder to shoulder—Combat Fishing—, and also the Bears. And all these user groups are blaming the other guy for taking ALL THE FISH. I say shut it all down for 3 to 5 years and let the Salmon stocks
    recover, otherwise there will be no Salmon for anybody, unless it’s farm raised. Sarah and Mary know this because they have both done Subsistence fishing and they have seen the decline in fish, first hand.

    • Sarge, the problem is that this is a very complex issue. There are a number of factors involved in ocean survival of salmon stocks, not the least being the North Pacific Decadal Osilating Current.
      Those Pink Salmon hatcheries in Prince William Sound and the 1972 Marine Mammal Protection act also figure in.
      Meaning that before we begin Blaming user groups we need to have a big picture understanding of the issue.

      I think it’s disingenuous , ( or ilinformed) to say, Mary and Sarah are Subsistence Fisherpersons so they hold the answers to the issues.

      Trouble is, Fish is Politics. Politics is about $ and getting the other guys fish.
      I cannot think of two people worse than Mary and Sarah to seek council from or answers about this subject.

      Alaska is a very big place with different regions and complex fisheries. Blaming one user group or advocating shutting down commercial fishing will not fix the problem. Reliance on real science and not political science is essential here.

      Hang Tough my friend!

      • “Real science” has been lying to us all along. Commercial fishing has always been the greatest cause of decline of the resource. Commercial fishing has bought the “science” to declare whatever profits the commercial fishery. Hatcheries is the result of over-fishing, and the public pays for them.
        The conservation issues are not too complex. The commercial interests are what’s too complex. Time to untie the Gordian knot; a five year moratorium could be the only possible way to b**ch-slap the commercial interests, and persuade them to keep it to a dull roar.
        The fish come from Alaskan waters. They’re our fish. We have the right to safeguard our investment, and enforce our interests on the high seas. So how do we b**ch-slap the big, foreign owned, commercial trawlers and processors, and protect our fisheries? By electing delegates to the Con-Con that have the public interest at heart. Whom do you know that has INTEGRITY? Elect them.

      • Inflation has cut your 2cents to a penny. If all those smart people where right why are the ledge species of Kenai Kings extinct, halibut size is smaller, and number of sport fish caught limited to less and less. Smaller to nonexistent runs in most rivers. They couldn’t feed their dog teams on the Yukon. Those high paid experts need to go down to the beach and see the empty nets that subsistence fisherman do. When their nets are empty, it won’t be long before all the bigger nets will be too. The Smart Bob Sponge Pants Experts have had their chance, and they failed. Shut it down for 3to 5 years and let the stocks recover.

  18. Suzanne, here’s a bit of clarification: You wrote, “climate change religious order”. I can guess the argument you’d make to promote climate change concern as a religion. Those of us who base our world view on evidence and reason, see that climate change is real and is likely caused by human meddling. See how I used the word likely? That’s gives wiggle room to accept new data, something that religion NEVER does. And then this: “Huffman has long been an advocate for locking up Alaska’s coastal plain of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge”. Thank you for spelling out Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. All those words are important and get lost in the acronym ANWR. But my beef is with your term “lockup”. Oil and gas locks up, or really locks out, other uses like ecosystem services for wildlife and climate. And recreation is diminished too. And of course petroleum is yesterday’s fuel.

    • “Those of us who base our world view on evidence and reason….”
      You going to believe us, or your lying eyes?

      “….room to accept new data, something that religion NEVER does.”
      The left’s agenda is a religion.

      “Oil and gas locks up, or really locks out, other uses….”
      We got the moral high ground, na na na.

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