Sen. Murkowski's comments about the urban-rural divide are both outrageous and out of touch! His views that "the Knowles-Ulmer administration has created a track record of broken promises, finger-pointing and perpetuating urban-rural conflicts for political gain" is absolutely incredulous!
There is an urban-rural divide. Commonwealth North, a public policy non-partisan organization spent months studying this very topic. I co-chaired this effort along with former Mayor Rick Mystrom. The biggest factor in the urban-rural divide is the subsistence issue, which has been held up in the state Legislature by a few members of the Senate's Republican leadership. This divide has only been exacerbated by urban Republican legislators such as Sen. Dave Donley, who consistently states the urban areas are giving way too much to the Bush. The Knowles-Ulmer administration has been proactive in calling various "sides" to the table on subsistence and other issues of importance to rural Alaska. To say they have perpetuated these conflicts for political gain not only demeans the work of Commonwealth North, but the work done by a number of Alaskans to positively address this issue. Sen. Murkowski, if you were more in touch with the issues impacting urban and rural Alaskans, you would have never made that statement. Talk about walking into a tar pit!
Leask is co-chair of Fran Ulmer's election campaign. - Editor