Quote of the Day: House Judiciary Claman following governor's orders - Must Read Alaska
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Sunday, June 13, 2021
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Quote of the Day: House Judiciary Claman following governor’s orders

 

 

‘MOCKERY OF QUESTIONS’

Testimony in House Judiciary Committee, chaired by Rep. Matt Claman, may be pointless, as the chair has evidently decided that SB 54 needs to be passed without any amendments. Testimony from Oct. 26:

Rep. Lora Reinbold: Okay I think this is the right time, I’ve been wanting to ask this for a long time. Has there been any instruction any motivation to get Senate Bill 54 through as is with no amendments?

John Skidmore, Department of Law: Through the chair, Representative Reinbold, it is certainly the position of the Department of Law that [SB] 54 is an important tool and the tools that are found in 54, as it exists, are things we are seeking and we would like to see that move as quickly as possible. 54 has already passed through the other body, so passing through this body without changes is quite frankly the cleanest way that it’s enacted quickly. But be that as it may we respect this body’s ability to make their own policy calls and amend things as they deem appropriate.

Rep. Reinbold: With all due respect, I asked if there was any discussions in any way with anybody, with any direction where you’ve been instructed in any fashion with the Department of Law wants…

John Skidmore: Through the chair Representative Reinbold, I’ve tried to make clear my position throughout my testimony in the days in front of this committee that I represent the Department of Law and the Administration and that the positions that I state here are not my personal positions they are the positions of the Department  of Law as they have evaluated all this information. So have I talked with people in my department? Of course I’ve talked with people in my department. I would be foolish not to have. Have I talked with others in the Administration? Of course I have. I am a part of the administration. Um, have I been told what I’m allowed to say and wat I’m not allowed to say? The answer is no.

Rep. Reinbold: Thank you. And my final one..

Rep. Claman: I’ll let you have a final one.

Rep. Reinbold: I feel like…

Rep. Claman: Representative Reinbold I think you’re actually going to like what I’m about to tell you. As to Senate Bill 54, I personally had a conversation with the governor, before we arrived at special session, in which he told me that he would like to see Senate Bill 54 passed in the version that it left the Senate. That is what he told me personally and I can’t tell you the discussion that led to that. But I can tell you that he’s the chief executive and I figure that’s the position of his team, and that’s what I assume.  And again, I can’t say anything about the discussions, but I can tell you that I specifically remember that conversation with the governor and that’s what he told me. And you have a third follow up.

Rep. Reinbold: OK and with all due respect, I feel like this has kind of been a mockery of questions. And you’re not answering all the questions. And you’re kind of … not remembering things, you don’t have the statistics … and I’ve been very disappointed.

And as much as I respect you, and as much as it is a tough position, I’m asking very simple questions, and if there was a discussion between you and the governor and you and the attorney general — if there was any discussion and you were directed anyway, because someone in the room told me there was, and so I’m just telling you I want that.

I know you’re not going to answer it at this point in time but its frustrating that I’m not getting the answers from very, very simple, tiny little questions….

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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

  • You could not be more correct. I found Chair Claman & his sidekicks Kreiss-Tomkins, Fasler & Kopp made a mockery of the whole amendment process. In some cases snickering, heavy sighs and playing with their phones. I absolutely believe Skidmore has basically been told to follow the yellow brick road or hit the road in no uncertain terms. In my dealings with him pre SB91 he appeared to be more of a tough on crime kinda guy. He probably prays at night for Walker’s defeat next year.

  • Governor Walker is a BULLY.

    • You’re being entirely too kind. A$$hat is more like it.

  • Time to audit Walker’s administration and find out where all the money is being spent. Start with the Dept. Of Law first. Why does the attorney general not know the answer about sex trafficking crimes?

  • If Walker wants it, defeat it before it hurts all of us any more than it already has.
    Mini-hillary needs to resign or be thrown out.

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