I would like to comment on a certain argument that keeps cropping up in a legislative races. It has been championed in the past by Bill Hudson, and now seems to be a mainstay of Cathy Muñoz. It basically goes: "The Republicans are in the majority, so we need to elect a Republican from Juneau or else no one will listen to our concerns."
Precisely what did that argument buy us in the past? Has anyone noticed how much capital funding Juneau has received as the result of graciously serving up Bill Hudson's vote to the majority in the house? Very, very little - less than Ketchikan or even Haines. They took his vote, used it to hammer and beat up on the rural areas of the state and generally do their mean-spirited Republican things, and gave less to Juneau than ever before.
The way to get what we need out of the right-wing fanatics in the Legislature is not to serve them up another well-meaning moderate for the Robin Taylor-types to use, run rough-shod over, and ignore. It is to get them out of the majority. Kim Elton has done a good job. Let's keep him in. His style is respectful and well-thought out, qualities definitely out of vogue with the current majority. We may have to suffer the idiocies of the right-wing bozos in control of the Legislature but we certainly don't need to help them extend their influence.
For the record, I have nothing against Ms. Muñoz, other than her stated intention to join up with that bunch. She may be the voice of reason, but as Bill Hudson proved, nobody in that crowd is listening to anything of the kind. She can only either help them or be ineffectual, or both. I expect them to try to legislate new laws of arithmetic next - how else can they balance the budget without new taxes?
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