The Anchorage Daily News asked candidates for Anchorage Assembly to answer a series of issue questions. Read all of them here.
Nial Sherwood Williams | District: 3 | Age: 35 | Occupation: Government watchdog
What is a short summary of your background?
I am an East Coast transplant fleeing tyranny. Having met my lovely wife here in Anchorage, we have chosen to settle here. I have spent the past two years standing up against government tyranny and unconstitutional overreaching by our Assembly. I was the individual who laid down in front backside (former Mayor Ethan Berkowitz’s) car. I was the one who was tackled by security at the Anchorage LIO. I have been arrested for going to a school board meeting, for silently praying, for refusing to wear a mask, for protesting government. I have always and will continue to speak the truth to power. I demand rights be upheld and government be transparent and open to the people. All power rests with the people.
Why are you running?
To stand up for the constitutional rights of all Anchorage citizens. Too often governmental officials and the political donor cartel get rich off the blood of the peasants. This has gone on for 70-plus years in Anchorage. It is time to truly drain the swamp. Electing Kameron Perez-Verdia or Liz Vazquez will only persist the same plague of corruption in Anchorage. It is time for a commoner to be elected who stands for and with the people. Stop electing government corruptocrats.
What makes you qualified to serve on the Anchorage Assembly?
I will hold all council-members accountable to their oaths of office to defend the Constitution of the United States of America and the constitution of our state of Alaska. I will do so by requiring openness and transparency in all aspects of government. Both parties have been lacked integrity to the promises given. Time for change.
What is the most important problem facing Anchorage? How would you address it?
Governmental corruption is the true pandemic. No line-item of the budget, no department of government is too important or too elite to not require an annual housecleaning. Government in this city is too big. Having over 55 municipal departments is too many. Many of the departments are duplicative and repeat tasks of a different department. None of the tasks being done well as government always fails to do things efficiently as could be done by private enterprise. This leads to the next point of quid-pro-quo corruption and kickbacks which have plagued Anchorage for over 70 years. And open, honest bidding process must be done without preferential treatment given to political donors groups or corporations.
What is the most important problem facing your district? How would you address it?
The most important problem facing West Anchorage is the integration of Ted Stevens Anchorage International Airport with the Port of Alaska and with the Alaskan railroad system. This is the true and real infrastructure that will provide viability and sustainability for generations to come here in Anchorage Alaska. We must cut the governmental red tape and out-of-control bureaucrats and stop kissing the ring of the unions. It is time to have a 21st century tri-use-transportation facility that integrates: rail car, air cargo, and port freight.
What is your vision of the role of local government in Anchorage?
Local government should be limited. Our municipal charter being over 2000 pages currently shows how far government has gotten off its original course. In our original municipal charter written in commission in 1959, there were less than 30 pages. And the original intent of government was extremely limited. It is time we return to this strictly limited local government that does not consistently infringe the rights of citizens.
Rate Dave Bronson’s performance as mayor. Explain, with specific examples.
Bronson ran on a ticket of open government, but the doors to the mayor’s office are locked. First Amendment rights to petition government for a redress of grievances cannot be abridged. He needs to honor his oath of office, which is to support and defend the constitution of the state of Alaska in the Constitution of the United States of America against all enemies foreign and domestic. The disgraceful mass care system at Sullivan Arena is a human rights disaster.
Rate the performance of the current Assembly. Explain, with specific examples.
The citizens of Anchorage are debt slaves to the political machine of Anchorage. The failure of the Assembly and the mayor to pass a balanced budget and the continuation of the bond program shows out of control and reckless policies. Assembly members have a fiduciary responsibility to the shareholders of the corporation of the Municipality of Anchorage. It is time that the criminals on the Assembly are held accountable for spending the citizens of Anchorage into debt slavery. Look at your property tax assessment: Most homes in Anchorage saw increases in assessed property value. Are your services any better for this additional that slavery your family has no incurred?
What’s your vision for improving and diversifying Anchorage’s economy?
There is uncertainty in the Anchorage economy. Constantly changing sets of goals and ambitions by special interests that have hijacked the needs of the people of Anchorage. This comes in the form of quid-pro-quo political payback to donors. Special interest money laundering and conspiracy must be cleaned up in the city before we can have any business growth opportunities.
What do you see as the most effective strategies to address homelessness in Anchorage going forward?
The homelessness industrial complex has overtaken our country. Anchorage is no different.
What’s your assessment of Anchorage’s transportation infrastructure? How would you improve it?
Anchorage’s transportation infrastructure is crumbling. Port, air, and rail need to be brought into the 21st century. We rely too much on the federal government to come fix our problems. These critical infrastructures must be able to bring critical goods to the citizens of Anchorage and Alaska at large. Let us not waste this batch of federal money as we did the last.
Does the city do a good job of running municipal elections? Would you push for changes? Explain.
No openness, no transparency, and certainly no accountability. The municipal clerk borders on being a fourth branch of government. My campaign will be challenging the constitutionality of, among other changes, those restricting videography inside elections headquarters. I challenge 1,000 Anchorage citizens to do the same. We the people must control the elections, not a tyrannical unelected bureaucrat.
The past two years have been marked by increased civic discord in Anchorage. How would you improve the quality of civic discourse in the city?
By staunchly defending freedom of speech and other constitutional rights of citizens. Politics and government need to have debate which is robust wide open. Limiting debate is that which is done in communist countries and under tyrannical despotic leaders such as King George, who we American citizens back in 1776 claimed freedom and independence from. Under New York Times versus Sullivan 1964 Supreme Court case law that states that we are allowed to call out elected officials by name not just for their policies but also for their personality. The citizens of Anchorage have been fooled, the freedom of speech still does exist in Anchorage.
Do you acknowledge the results of the 2020 presidential election? Also, what are your thoughts on what took place on Jan. 6, 2021 in the U.S. Capitol?
This is not relevant to the municipal election.
What’s one thing that makes you hopeful about Anchorage’s future?
The citizens of Anchorage are a resilient people. Removing corruption and bureaucracy takes time, but we will remove the swine together.
What other important issue would you like to discuss?
It is time for tyrants in local government to step aside and for we the people to retain control of our government and the direction which our city will head. If you, the constituents of West Anchorage, choose me as your Assembly member I promise to always be open to communication. To stand up for the constitutional rights of all citizens. And I will hold governmental accountability and transparency in the highest regard. Thank you for the opportunity to represent your interests.