08 November 2006

Minority Leader

When it comes to Alaskan politics, I find the legislature far more interesting than the governor (though that may be because the governor was so weak this last year).

I was intrigued, thus, by the strong (and surprising) results posted by the Democratic party last night - three seat pick-ups in the House, one in the Senate, and not even close races in the races that were seen to be closely-contested, particularly in Anchorage.

(Of course, I can't be satisfied: I would trade all of last night's results - including Ralph Seekins' defeat - if Con Bunde had lost... just like I am willing to trade all the nationwide results for George Allen's defeat. I am sure that Con Bunde is a great person and a smart lawmaker but he just keeps proposing ideas that are so dangerous to the Bush that I'd rather he be in a place where he can do less damage, i.e. not the legislature.)

In the spirit of (completely amateur) legislature-watching, I am curious to see who emerges as the new leaders of the respective chambers.

My hope (and that is all it is) is that Mary Kapsner - Alaska native, rural-oriented, well-spoken - emerges as Ethan Berkowitz's replacement as minority leader in the House. I'm aware it may well not happen - I wouldn't be surprised if Beth Kertulla got the job - but it'd sure be great if she did.
In the Senate, I think Gene Therriault will return as president.

And (here's another hope), I'm sure Johnny Ellis is a great person but I'd really like to Hollis French as Senate minority leader. I find him to be the most compelling Democratic senator.

UPDATE: The House Democrats move quickly... and pick a qualified and competent candidate but not the one I wanted.

1 comment:

Jim said...

I worked briefly with Beth back when the Gov and legislature were gutting the Alaska Coastal Management Program. I really like her and Ethan after that - think they are great people for the state. IIRC, Eric Croft was also helping there a lot and another Dem whose name escapes me at the moment. But I was impressed at how much of themselves these people put into trying to do the right thing.