As some Tea Party conservatives boycott the Alaska Republican Party’s biennial convention, a national party co-chair says the party is more united than divided.
The convention got underway Thursday in Juneau. Republican National Committee Co-Chair Sharon Day kicked it off with the keynote address.
In an interview earlier in the day, she said there’s not much difference between Tea Party and other Republicans.
“You just have to continue to sort of pull them together. You know it’s not us or them, but at the end of the day if we don’t win, we don’t govern,” Day said. “If you are looking for 100 percent party or 100 percent candidate that agrees with you 100 percent of the time, you better look in the mirror and then you better run for office because it’s the only time in your life that you will have a candidate that agrees with you 100 percent of the time.”
Day acknowledged national party committee members seldom come to Alaska, but they are here to help Republican candidates for U.S. Senate.
“We’re united standing with our Republicans here in Alaska,” she said. “We have their back, we’re in the trenches with them.”
Three candidates are vying for the Republican nomination to run against Democratic U.S. Sen. Mark Begich: Tea Party favorite Joe Miller, former state Attorney General and Natural Resources Commissioner Dan Sullivan, and Lt. Gov. Mead Treadwell.
They square off in a candidate forum on Friday at 7:30 a.m. On Saturday, state Republicans are hosting a forum for lieutenant governor candidates — state Sen. Lesil McGuire, of Anchorage, and Anchorage Mayor Dan Sullivan — also at 7:30 a.m. The state Republican Convention is being held at Centennial Hall.
Alaska’s primary election is Aug. 19.
- Roughly 6,000 state workers were unable to log in to their computers, affecting two in five executive branch workers.
- The totem pole is an icon of the Pacific Northwest. The carved art form showcases clan stories and family crests in museums around the world. After more than 30 years in the Anchorage Museum, a century-old pole from Southeast has made it back to Sitka, where curators are prepping a permanent home.
- One of the Sealaska regional Native corporation’s longest-serving leaders is stepping down. Rosita Worl says she will not run for another term after 30 years on the board.
- President Donald Trump’s budget outline calls for eliminating funding for the National Endowment for the Arts. The NEA has been a frequent target of Republicans, but U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski supports the endowment, and Tuesday she won the 2017 Congressional Arts Leadership Award.