Scott Ogan: Sen. Shower was point man to repeal SB 91, and worked hard to win a full PFD for Alaskans

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By SCOTT OGAN

Did you know that Sen. Mike Shower of Wasilla was the point man on repealing Senate Bill 91?

SB 91 was the ill-advised, catch-and-release, soft-on-crime bill that caused a huge spike in crime. SB 91 was so famous in Alaska that it became a household name, even among criminals, who loved it. Shower saw the problem with it and acted with conviction to reverse the damage.

Sen. Shower led the heavy lift in committee and then led the conference committee that made no concessions to the soft-on-crime legislators who opposed the repeal.

Shower has also authored more conservative bills than any other legislator. He takes on the hardest issues. Thanks to certain Republican House coalition members, however, any Republican legislation has to be a compromise to survive in the House.

In Sen. Mike Shower’s election integrity bill, Senate Bill 39, Shower used the policy metric of “making it easy to vote and hard to cheat.” Notwithstanding Shower’s conservative credentials, he is a very effective negotiator, and knows how to work with those with diverse views.

Shower’s election reform bill would have gotten rid of of Dominion machines. SB 39 would have fixed Alaska’s loose ballot chain-of-custody protocols. It incorporated best-practice protocols for cleaning up Alaska’s over-inflated voter rolls, and removed Alaska from the ERIC system, a George Soros-funded private election entity with no oversight from the Legislature.

SB 39 required open-source software for any voter machines, and required them to be “air gapped,” so they are transparent and not connected in any way to the internet or cell towers. Hello, election transparency. 

The bill was a work in progress and some last-minute amendments were added that Sen Shower did not agree with, so after two years of work, he actually killed his own bill in the final minutes of the session. Shower did great for hanging tough and not compromising core election integrity values. 

Shower also successfully challenged the “binding caucus,” a quid pro quo system of political favors doled out by leadership to control critical votes of legislators. For the first time in decades there was no binding caucus in the senate. Do you think it’s a coincidence it’s also the first time a full statutory PFD passed in that body in seven years? Shower did that. His amendment realized the largest PFD in Alaska history because he simply followed the law. What a concept!

Sen. Shower has been conservatively consistent with his legislation to break the liberal Alaska Bar control of who serves on the bench.  

The bottom line, is Sen. Shower is Alaska’s most conservative and effective State Senator.  

Scott Ogan is a retired Alaska State Senate.

17 COMMENTS

  1. I’d still love to know who lobbied the SB 91 sponsors (mostly Republicans) for even bringing it into consideration. Most don’t know or remember that it was prison reform, not oil field service corruption, that was the genesis of the 2006 Alaska Corruption Scandal. SB 91 smells like a repeat, especially since the same garbage has spread from coast to coast. It is a nationwide disaster. Somebody with money is behind this.

      • Why would a Republican state senator (several, actually) sponsor such foolish legislation advocated by a well known leftist think tank? How can you not know that if you don’t put criminals in jail, they will commit more crimes?

  2. Tshibaka is endorsed by Trump. Palin is endorsed by Trump. Shower is endorsed by Ogan. Lie down with dogs …

    • … rise up with Democrat fleas. And ticks. And tapeworms.
      .
      Because if there is one thing that today’s Democrats are all about, it is parasitism — of the government on the people, and of the people on the government.

  3. Senator Ogan, this year’s PFD was still short of statutory amount. I agree with your conclusion about Senator Showers – let’s keep him in office.

    • Sen Shower got the full statutory PFD Amendment passed in the senate. It got the ball rolling for the bigger payout. Rep Stutes sat on the senate PFD Amendment and cancelled house floor sessions for days until she could kill the Full PFD payout.. but Shower put the press on the house to not drastically cut the payout. The reason Shower got the amendment out of the senate is because of. no binding caucus. Senators could finally vote to represent their constituents.

  4. Liz Vazquez voted AGAINST this bill before all the ZEALOTS voted it into law.
    I would rather my government do NOTHING than inflict this type of harm on the community.
    Maybe they should read Thomas Sowell’s “Intellectuals and Society”

  5. I know now, WOW, thank you Suzanne must read flat out gets it. Senator Shower sir to hear and see oath integrity in action is quite a thing to behold. Congratulations on your guts, imagine making Jesus cry I believe you did. Our Soldiers do not die in vain when we have OATH INTEGRITY, I look at our politicians and judges all our oath takers and pray, they follow suit. Shower Shower Shower us in that integrity thank you sir.

  6. Pew research, the DOC Commissioner at the time (i forget his name); he wanted to paint cells purple or lavender or something like that. It supposedly had a “calming effect” – it was a bunch of crap — and Governor Walker. Millett, coghill, Ledoux and a bunch of others carried the water. What a terrible time for the legislature and Alaskans.

  7. The PFD was timely. It paid for home heating fuel and property taxes. Thank you, Mike. Five votes coming at you.

    • I’m glad it helped. I am disappointed it wasn’t the full amount of $5500 per person the senate passed to the house – how much more that would have done for everyone trying to get by. This is going to be a tough winter based on the price of food & fuel alone. Take care.

  8. To be fair Sen Costello and Sen Reinbold (then Rep Reinbold) we’re both already fighting the battle to repeal SB91 when I arrived in the Senate in 2018. Sen Costello is now in a dogfight with Rep Claman who was 100% in favor of keeping soft on crime SB91. How do I know? Because I was in fact on the conference committee with Sen Hughes on the Senate side negotiating the final repeal of SB91 (in the appointed conference committee – this is factual). Rep Kopp and Rep Claman were the majority House members on that committee and they fought us at every step to keep SB91 in place. Do not believe any lies about Sen Costello and crime – she pushed for repeal, was a major voice for the thousands of Alaskans who were victims of crime and she’s a big part of the reason we were able to repeal SB91 because of all the work she and Reinbold did. Sen Hughes and I certainly fought the battle with them but credit must be given to all those who worked to repeal it – it was truly a team effort. I certainly was at the front of the battle to repeal it as I chaired state affairs and moved the repeal bills quickly through my committee and worked on them again as vice chair of judiciary. However, many legislators such as Kopp and Claman bitterly fought to keep SB91 in place. And yes it was Gov Bill Walker with the help of some legislators (R & D) who gave us that failed criminal justice bill. I can’t say for sure since I wasn’t there at the time. I can tell you this, it’s not happening again on my watch no matter who’s governor. I’m sure other legislators would say the same thing.

  9. As an interesting bit of history. Dean Williams, who I believe Gov Walker brought up from California to be his Dept of Corrections commissioner and who was part of the team that brought us SB91, was let go by Gov Dunleavy once he was in office. A friend who works in politics in Colorado was telling their House minority leader (Republican) about our “experiment” with SB91. He called me to ask about it because this guy, Dean Williams, who they described as a far left progressive, had been hired by their new far left governor (their words) to “fix” their criminal justice system. I told him about it, he was understandably not happy, wished him good luck. Small world.

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