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Addressing Alaska's fiscal gap is the most critical issue facing us as voters and as citizens in the upcoming election. Kim Elton, like Fran Ulmer, understands that solving this crisis will require a multifaceted approach. It is at best naive to assert that some kind of tax will not be required as part of this solution. Kim and Fran, unlike their opponents, have leveled with us about what it will take to put our state's fiscal house in order.
The Republican mantra of "no new taxes" only adds up to draconian reductions in state government and an all-out raid on the permanent fund. The notion that developing new, untapped resources will fill a nearly billion dollar gap in the next two to three years is pure hogwash. Kim and Fran have not patronized us with platitudes and empty promises. They have carefully explained in their public statements the reality of our situation. And part of that reality is that the time is near when Alaskans, like everyone else in America, will need to contribute to help pay for schools and roads and police and child protection and the other important functions government performs. For that they have both my thanks, and my vote.