Well, he's shorter than I am. No, only kidding.
I've run school districts, which are complex, multilayered systems. I've run school districts and have been part of the policymaking body of school districts that have budgets anywhere from $60 million to $200 million. School districts, as you know, have multiple schools, multiple grades, multiple programs. Within the district office itself, there's multiple departments and divisions. As a superintendent, you negotiate contracts with several different unions. You're dealing with parents — thousands of parents, thousands of children, each with their own unique issues. You have to be able to problem solve and bring people together. It really mirrors, in many respects, state government, with its different departments and its different divisions. You have to bring all those parts and pieces of a complex system together to have an outcome.
I also was in the Senate, my opponent was not, which gives me an idea of how the legislative process works at the ground level — firsthand experience.
I lived in rural Alaska. I just don't talk about rural Alaska. It's not that I just visited rural Alaska. I actually lived in rural Alaska for approximately 19 years and I lived in the Arctic for 13 years.
And so, I understand Alaska from a whole host of different angles and I understand how to run organizations. So I think those issues set me apart.
What sets me apart from Mike Dunleavy, is I've got a record.
I have been in the battle for Alaska on many different issues for 44 years. My first job was helping to get the 200-mile limit to get control of our salmon. I worked with the Reagan administration to get the power to export our oil and gas, that was a huge battle. I was involved in the battle to get CDQs (Community Development Quota program) for Western Alaska that brought huge wealth and jobs to Western Alaska, and I was on the Hickel cabinet team that made that happen.
I spent 10 years … in fact, the very first article in the Anchorage Daily News about our campaign said, "Oh what a miserable campaign that this is going to be," but it was a 10-year campaign to get the United States to adopt missile defense and that's meant billions of dollars of investment here and hundreds of jobs.
If you're looking for a conservative whose put conservative principles into practice, look for somebody who's actually made that happen.
I have business experience. Mike Dunleavy said in a debate the other day that Dwight Eisenhower didn't have business experience. Mike Dunleavy didn't win WWII. I can show you battles that I've fought and won for 40 years here as an Alaskan, as a member of a team of Alaskans trying to make things happen for our state.
More questions with gubernatorial candidates Dunleavy and Treadwell: