THE ANCHORAGE DAILY PLANET
Now that the Alaska Supreme Court has cleared the way for signature-gathering to set a special election to unseat Gov. Mike Dunleavy for sins real and imagined, backers of the effort are absolutely giddy.
Letters to the editor, breathless pronouncements in the press and headlines such as “After a Supreme Court win, Alaskans have a right and responsibility to recall,” all attest to the fervor stirred by the Dunleavy recall effort in some quarters.
With all due respect, these folks are shielding their true financial backers by the sin of omission – and playing the rest of us for chumps.
They have yet to tell us who is underwriting the recall effort that started nine months ago, on Aug. 1. They have not said who is paying the legal bills stretching from Superior Court to the Alaska Supreme Court. Who is paying for signature gatherers? Who is paying for the myriad incidental costs associated with a statewide effort? Who is paying?
Without knowing whose checkbook is being used to unseat a sitting governor, how can Alaskans know their motives, their hearts? Is it a political hit-job by the unions? Outside liberal interests? Misguided leftists simply seeking to undo a Republican’s election? Who knows? The news media are avoiding the question like the plague.
Right now, all that information remains a deep, dark secret. The group Recall Dunleavy dutifully has filed with the Alaska Public Offices Commission, but its income and expenditure reports show noting. No income. No outgo. Nada. A kink in state law actually allows that, allows Recall Dunleavy to take in and spend unlimited, undocumented amounts of money from anybody, except foreign interests – until the question reaches the ballot.
Then, and only if signature-gathering money is rolled over into the ensuing election campaign, backers would have to report every penny collected and spent since signature-gathering began. That is unlikely to happen based on the secrecy so far.
Recall Dunleavy’s effort, now blessed by the Supreme Court’s impeach-for-anything ruling, is no more than a we-don’t-like-you effort paid for by shadowy figures Alaskans may never be able to identify. And the group wants the rest of us to play along?
We all should be demanding truth for signatures. The absolute and complete truth. Who are you? seems a reasonable question to ask those skulking in the political shadows to undo our will, all the while claiming a halo.