FAIRBANKS - Delegates to the Alaska Democratic Party endorsed Lt. Gov. Fran Ulmer for governor before adjourning their statewide convention Sunday.
Executive director Tammy Troyer said the party still plans a primary Aug. 27, but can now can offer financial support up to $100,000 to Ulmer. Bruce J. Lemke of Anchorage and Michael J. Beasley of Fairbanks also have filed as Democrats.
Troyer said it was only the second time in the party's history that an endorsement has been given prior to the primary.
Delegates also voted to reaffirm party support for environmentally responsible development of Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. Bringing the issue up again was a way to remind the public that in Alaska, Democrats take a separate stand from their national counterparts, Troyer said.
In its platform, the party reiterated its long-standing commitment to protecting the Alaska Permanent Fund.
Supporting a state income tax as an alternative to tapping the permanent fund was discussed at the convention, but the resolution did not pass.