From the diaries, by Erick.
So, Alaskans made many here happy and defeated Ted Stevens, replacing him with a seeminly moderate Democrat, Mark Begich, Mayor of Anchorage. Understand first, that ANC is a fairly conservative city that elects mostly Republicans in general elections. Like many cities, ANC’s city elections are on the second Tuesday after the third Monday when the Moon is in Aquarius or some such date that only public employees and others with their hooves in the city trough know. So, Democrats own the city government and unions and Greenies own the Democrats.
Like his predecessor and mentor, Tony Knowles, Begich campaigns like a Republican. In fact, he sounds more conservative than many of the elected Rs here. All the Statewide Ds here are NRA members and all swear that they’re going to be the one that can get to the table with the Democrats in Congress and make it possible to develop ANWR and NPRA and rationalize the subsistence issues in ANILCA and bring down energy prices in rural Alaska and serve us all pink Bubble-Up and Rainbow Stew. And when they actually get into office, by their deeds you shall know them, though the words stay the same. Tony Knowles did ABSOLUTELY NOTHING to stop Bill Clinton from destroying Alaska’s timber industry and tying up most of its mining industry. He did ABSOLUTELY NOTHING to prevent or in response to Clinton’s veto of the ANWR authorization. Begich is just a continuation of Knowles but moved to the bigger stage of the US Senate. David Ramseur, was Knowles’ COS, Begich’s COS in ANC, and will be Begich’s COS in the Senate. He’s Alaska’s version of Rahm Emanuel, very smart and wholly ruthless. But for those of you who think there might be some hope of domestic oil development any time in the next decade, take a look at Begich’s new Alaska director, a full-tilt card-carrying Greenie and former staffer for Patrick Leahy. Yep, elections do have consequences, but at least you don’t have Ted Stevens to kick around any more. The Anchorage Daily News story is here: http://www.adn.com/mark_begich/story/620323.html