Repulsive and sad

Posted: Sunday, February 23, 2003

I'd like to ask Lew M. Williams Jr. to cite the occasion(s) and the journalists who have "criticized (Gov. Frank Murkowski) for not solving the state's fiscal problems yet" as he wrote in his typically compassionate column of Feb. 21 ("No need to exempt state workers from downsizing").

As a reporter who has been covering the new governor since he took office, and as closely as any since the start of the current legislative session, I am not aware of any such public criticism by working journalists.

Certainly the Capitol press corps has questioned the governor intently on a variety of subjects, and I am proud to include myself in that scrappy little band. Not coincidentally the governor's stated plans to resolve the state's fiscal problems have also been questioned by respected economists, other public officials and many private citizens, including retirees like Lew M. Williams Jr.

It is grossly inconsistent to think one who seems to take such joy savaging state employees, would object to tough questions put to a public official who, when it comes to performing his assigned job properly and efficiently, is nothing more than another state employee.

It is repulsive and sad that it is a former newspaper publisher who objects to such questions.

Robert P. Tkacz


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