The Associated Press dug deeper than any other news agency to find a gem of an email.
It was from Donna Walker, former First Lady of Alaska, to her husband, counseling him on how to handle the downfall of Lt. Gov. Byron Mallott last October.
“Does he explain the incident?” Donna Walker wrote to Gov. Bill Walker at his official state email account. She followed that with some wifely advice:
“I think that you describing it as ‘inappropriate comments’ is a huge understatement and you will be criticized for that. It was the conduct as well of inviting her to his room, and it sounds like there was some discrepancy as to how he greeted/touched her. I think you need to say inappropriate conduct.”
Although Must Read Alaska requested email exchanges from Donna Walker and Bill Walker for the same period of time, we didn’t receive this revealing exchange in the over 1,000 pages of emails we’ve obtained from the days surrounding Mallott’s resignation last October.
But among the interesting emails was one from the Mallott’s chief of staff. Claire Richardson advised others in the Governor’s Office of a story in Must Read Alaska, describing the various scenarios that were being talked about at the Alaska Federation of Natives conference. The cover was blown, and the story was out.
Richardson quoted directly from Must Read Alaska:
“But the rumors are flying: It happened at AFN Elders and Youth Conference. No, it happened at Tanana Chiefs Conference, and the person is in law enforcement. No, it was that Mallott told First Lady Donna Walker to go “F–” herself. No, it’s back to AFN and Mallott propositioned an underage girl, “If you were a bit older and I wasn’t married … “
But if a lieutenant governor makes an inappropriate overture to the daughter of his “close associate,” that’s another matter altogether.
“The young girl’s mother evidently had a close relationship with Mallott, who is 75. Must Read Alaska has learned that Mallott said something to the daughter — and the mother went ballistic.“
Those close to the matter have long said that Donna Walker was a key figure in demanding Mallott’s resignation after inappropriate comments were made to a teenage girl during the AFN conference.
But until the story by AP writer Mark Thiessen, the exact nature of Mallott’s transgressions have only been rumored.
In another email exchange, Deputy Chief of Staff Grace Jang demanded the search of emails for everyone who had access to Walker’s calendar.
Must Read Alaska has learned in recent months that Jang was trying to find out who in the Administration was leaking material to Must Read Alaska. At one point, she asked to see staff members’ cell phones so to examine their text message histories.