Fairbanks Rep. Steve Thompson, fresh off a win in his District 2 primary race, has come out in support of a Democrat running in District 29, Nikiski-Kenai.
Thompson’s name, along with Republican Rep. Louise Stutes, was included in a fundraising social media post this week for Democrat Paul Dale, who is challenging Republican Rep. Ben Carpenter of Nikiski.
Dale is actually registered as a nonpartisan, but his campaign disclosures show he has paid Ron Meehan, a regional chair for the Alaska Democrats, thousands of dollars to help run his campaign, and he has paid his required $2,500 fee to the Alaska Democratic Party for the use of their shared services.
The fact that Debra Bonito, who is married to Mark Begich, is also a co-host to the fundraiser is just one more tell that Dale is one of those Democrats-in-sheep’s-clothing candidates. Tom Begich, Sam Cotten, Bryce Edgmon, and Republican-turned-anti-Republican Louise Stutes are also cohosts of the online fundraiser.
In 2019, Thompson and Stutes both crossed over to support the Democrat-led majority and install Speaker Bryce Edgmon. That organization blocked the governor’s cost-cutting agenda and ultimately installed a far-left radical on the Redistricting Board, which is in charge of drawing new political districts after the 2020 Census.
Thompson had been a reliable Republican until 2018, but was offered the prestigious post of majority leader with the Democrat-led caucus, and he abandoned the Republican majority to form a new majority.
In the 2020 Primary Election, other Republicans who installed Democrat leadership didn’t fare as well — Reps. Jennifer Johnston and Chuck Kopp both lost their primaries, while Bart LeBon of Fairbanks and Louise Stutes of Kodiak were unopposed. Gary Knopp of Kenai, who also led the revolt against his fellow Republicans, died in a plane crash in July.
But now that the primary is over, it appears Thompson may join Stutes in trying to form yet another Democrat-led caucus.
Paul Dale did not appear in the Primary Election, choosing to go directly to the General Election, as many other pretend nonpartisans have been doing. It’s clear the Democrats have identified Rep. Carpenter as someone they can knock off in the General Election in this deeply conservative part of the state.