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Paul Jenkins

Watching the grinding, soul-shredding contest for the U.S. Senate seat handed Democrat Mark Begich by our friends in the Justice Department, it is easy to see where each side in the fracas -- desperate for new ideas, any ideas, at this late date -- hopes to find a campaign boost.

Begich and Republican Dan Sullivan are turning the run-up to November’s battle for control of the Senate into a "War of Women." Suddenly, there is one woman after another on television touting the candidates, defending their honor, making their points, countering attacks...

Paul Jenkins

The dope dudes must be scratching their heads, wondering whether their campaign to persuade Alaska voters to legalize marijuana in the November election is -- poof! -- going up in smoke, hijacked by greed, zeal and wackiness...

Paul Jenkins

Sitting down to write this column, I had a lead in mind: A funny thing happened on the way to the trailer park the other night. Alaska’s former first family piled out of a stretch Clampettmobile at a party and stumbled -- proud, rowdy, middle fingers defiantly flying -- headlong into national headlines. Again.

It would have continued: Voices were raised. Punches thrown. Alcohol -- no, say it ain’t so! -- was involved. Perhaps as important, a sick, spellbinding celebrity was involved, too...

Paul Jenkins

With the frenzy surrounding announcement of a Bill Walker-Byron Mallott gubernatorial ticket -- some breathlessly call it “historic” -- you have to wade through a river of populist drivel to get to the meaty question: Who is Bill Walker?

Pardon me for noticing, but Walker -- a guy working hard to be everything to everybody, to be “inclusive” and “nonpartisan” -- is not who many Democrats may hope he is. There is somebody quite different wrapped in the Kool-Aid rhetoric...

Paul Jenkins

Imagine my shock at the headline: “Walker, Mallott Form Union Ticket to Oppose Parnell.” Holy cow! I thought. Finally, the unvarnished truth about this latest bit of cheesy political legerdemain and, boy, are the union guys going to be ticked off.

Ah, but, alas, no. On second reading, the headline actually said, “Unity,” not “Union.” So much for the bald truth in this brave new world of rank political chicanery that for the first time in Alaska’s voting history leaves Democrats off the gubernatorial ballot...

Paul Jenkins

It is a hoot to watch the political left, always prowling for new boogeymen to hate for fundraising purposes, as it hustles to chase down fresh victims. Take, for instance, its ginned-up war on the conservative Koch brothers. It is even more fun, despite the leftʼs herculean efforts, when Alaskans stare blankly and ask: Who?

A recent headline in Alaska Dispatch News, “ New US Senate ads in Fairbanks invoke Koch brothers, but local resonance is unclear ,” indicates there is some of that disconnect going on in the City of Frozen Pipes...

Paul Jenkins

You have to wonder about a state where elections sometimes are decided by a coin-flip or vitally important questions about its future are decided by one in three registered voters. Heck, one in three people here routinely wear tin-foil hats...

Paul Jenkins

With the hours ticking away until Tuesday’s primary election, the half-truths, whoppers and statistics apparently conjured from thin air are swirling like tornadoes through the debate about whether to repeal oil tax reform and return to the failed Alaska’s Clear and Equitable Share oil tax...

Paul Jenkins

If you are laboring under the illusion that the Obama administration and its sycophants on the left care about Alaska Natives in King Cove or anyplace else, you might weigh what her highness, Interior Secretary Sally Jewell, has to say: Just get over it.

King Cove, a flyspeck Aleut fishing village at the furthest reaches of the wind-blown Alaska Peninsula, some 600 miles southwest of Anchorage, for decades has sought a 9-mile, single-lane, gravel, connecting road through the 330,000-acre Izembek National Wildlife Refuge wilderness to nearby Cold Bay.

That former World War II military installation boasts an all-weather runway -- Alaska’s second-longest and a priceless asset in a remote region where ferocious weather is the norm...

Paul Jenkins

Liberal Democrat Mark Begich is praying for a second lightning strike in this cherry-red state as he struggles to transmogrify himself -- zaaaap! -- into something more palatable to Alaskans than a tax-and-spender beholden to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and President Barack Obama.

Begich wants, even needs, Alaskans to embrace him as something of a moderate, an everyman, a -- heaven forgive me -- Mark Murkowski, of sorts. Sidelined and politically neutered by Reid’s protective instincts in this election year, Begich has decided the best way to polish his creds is to surf Lisa Murkowski’s wake. If he can hurt her politically in the process, if he can damage her re-election chances down the road, hey, so much the better...

Paul Jenkins

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