What does Palin mean when she says 'biased'?

Letter to the editor

Posted: Tuesday, October 24, 2006

It seems that at a recent Chamber of Commerce meeting in Wasilla, Sarah Palin, the Republican candidate for governor, said that, if elected, she would be "biased towards the valley (Mat-Su) in the decisions I make." She added that she would be an "advocate for the Mat-Su Valley in Juneau."

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I'm wondering just what she means by being biased. Could it mean that, if elected, she intends to transfer state agencies up to Wasilla and Palmer so that her supporters can lease out office space in lucrative state contracts? Even our soon to be former Gov. Frank Murkowski, with his 19 percent approval rating, had enough sense not to reveal his interest in rewarding Ketchikan supporters when he transferred the marine highway offices from Juneau to Ketchikan. Could her statements mean that contract bidders from the Mat-Su borough will be given a preference? While I'm sure there are bidding requirements and regulations, the governor has a lot of power to wield. I wonder how such statements play out in Fairbanks and Anchorage.

If this was just a poor choice of terms, "biased" instead of "advocate," it shows an appalling lack of judgment. It's one thing to love an area, or to be proud to be from there, but quite another to be biased toward that area, especially if you are supposed to be the governor for the whole state. If these statements represent a deeper interest of Palin's, then I urge all Southeast Alaska voters to take a much longer look at their voting preferences.

I especially urge single-issue voters to take a much longer look at her candidacy. It must be difficult for the anti-abortion voters who support Palin to realize that she may well move legislative sessions and agencies out of Juneau and up to Wasilla. Think of the drop in housing values here if that were to happen. Plans for a second crossing and various infrastructure expansions may well not become feasible. And what's the point of the Juneau access road if the capital will be in Juneau in name only? There is a lot at stake in this election. Do we really want another loose cannon in the Governor's Mansion?

Steve Wolf


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