Republicans vs. Republican Moderates

Posted: Wednesday, January 28, 2004

Ray Metcalfe selected stale voter registration data to spin his Jan. 25 tale in the Juneau Empire. Alaskan voter registration had exploded by 156,000 registrations due to federal restrictions on voter file purges. The first 2001 purge removed approximately 20,000 voters. Metcalfe's conclusions should be purged as well and his facts revisited.

Division of Elections data from June 26, 2002 (when current districts were formed), and Jan. 7, 2004, reveal the following voter registration increases: Republican Party of Alaska, plus 5,548; Republican Moderate Party, plus 1,227; Democrat Party, plus 159; Libertarian Party, plus 97; Green Party, plus 15. The Alaska Independence Party lost 1,245 members. Clearly the Republican Party has grown four times as much as the next four parties combined.

Metcalfe claims a state Senator is a member of the Republican Moderate Party. Tom Wagoner was a Republican before filing, became a Republican again the day after his election, is serving in the Republican Senate Majority and has filed for reelection as a Republican.

Now let's consider the 2002 election. A total of 32,788 Republicans and 41,459 nonpartisan or undeclared Alaskans voted in contested 2002 RPA primary races to select 21 Republican nominees. Only 470 RMP members voted in their primary that had zero candidate selection contests. The other 2,439 RMP members did not participate in the RMP non-event primary.

The RPA invites Republican Moderate Party members to change their registration to Republican and participate in the Republican Party primary. Why not gain a vote in Alaska's only meaningful candidate selection process?

Randy Ruedrich

Chairman, Republican Party of Alaska

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