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Alaska politics and political hijinks
Alaska lawmakers this year are beginning to look deeper into the massive, controversial Pebble project. The mining companies involved in developing Pebble told lawmakers Friday they are working on the most intensive environmental studies ever undertaken in Alaska.Elizabeth Bluemink
U.S. Attorney Nelson Cohen said Friday he is returning to Pittsburgh, leaving the job he accepted on an interim basis in August 2006. His replacement, also on an interim basis, will be assistant U.S. Attorney Karen Loeffler.Richard Mauer
If Sean Parnell could no longer serve as lieutenant governor, Corrections Commissioner Joe Schmidt would replace him. Gov. Sarah Palin recently appointed Schmidt to fall behind Parnell in the line of succession, said Bill McAllister, her director of communications.
Here's an update from the American Conservative magazine about the CPAC conference. The folks at the American Conservative are actually trying to elevate the conservative conversation. They write that there are glimmers of hope at the conference, (ones that don't at all include Palin... they aren't fans), but it sounds pretty nasty out there. Here's a quote from the post: "[T]he fact that many of the speakers - and I listened to a lot - have relied so heavily on relentlessly shopworn, ad hominem attacks, crude stereotypes (at one point a speaker asked, regarding Nancy Pelosi, 'guys, how would you like to be married to that?') and demagoguery (lots of talk about the Socialist Revolution at the door, hammers and sickles and pitchforks, oh my), indicates a lot more self-reflection needs to happen. But right now, red meat still rules. And it tends to spoil. Fast."
(CORRECTION: Although it's on Hannity's forum, along with a large graphic, it's unclear if Sean Hannity himself wrote the post.) Fox New's Sean Hannity-one of the most popular talk show hosts-has a forum online about armed revolution. He says he's been hearing a lot of people callling for one, and he wants to know what form an armed revolt should take. Would it take a military coup? An armed rebellion? A war for secession? He then waxes philosophic about what each would look like. He thinks that succession is the "most realistic," because a military coup might have us looking like Iraq. An armed rebellion and a military coup would "require things like killing your own neighbor if they disagree with you politically," and would mean that "the guy with the most guns ultimately prevails."
Gov. Palin on Thursday threw her support behind a bill that would generally require parental consent before girls under age 17 could get an abortion.Lisa Demer
In his televised speech Tuesday, Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal said, "Americans can do anything!" With one exception, apparently: We don't need to keep an eye on simmering volcanoes. George Bryson
House and Senate leaders will meet with Gov. Sarah Palin today to discuss the federal stimulus package while uncertainty continues swirling over what Alaska can expect and what it will accept of the state's estimated $1 billion share.
They may not have her vote, but the people of Washington, D.C., seemed at least to have the sympathies of Alaska's senior senator as they pushed this week for representation in Congress.Erika Bolstad

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