Alaska editorial: Governor must sell her tax plan hard if she believes in it

Posted: Friday, November 09, 2007

The Alaska Legislature is well into the special session that Gov. Sarah Palin called for the purpose of approving her new oil tax plan. It appears, however, that the governor is noticeably not placing a great deal of public pressure on lawmakers to get them to do what she wants them to do.

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Governors routinely take to the podium and pound, lambaste, chastise, criticize, sweet-talk or sometimes almost beg legislators to approve this or that piece of key legislation.

Not so much from this governor.

It could be that she is trying in other, not-so-public ways to cajole reluctant legislators to her side. So far, though, Gov. Palin so far is coming across as someone not terribly convinced her plan - Alaska's Clear and Equitable Share, or ACES, as she calls it - is critical for the state's future. If she has a case to make, she needs to make it repeatedly, loudly and consistently, and stake herself unabashedly to it.

It's one thing for the governor to send her people to the Legislature's committee rooms to testify; it's another more powerful thing to see a governor come out fighting hard and often for what she believes.

We've said it before. Alaskans should want Palin to succeed. They should want her to be right in her estimation that Alaska can get a greater share of revenue from the oil industry without harming investment in Alaska by that vital industry.

The trouble, though, is that there are several skeptics of her plan in and out of the Legislature.

If Palin wants her oil tax plan, she herself needs to convince more people it's the right choice.

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