Begich Stumps In Kodiak


Jay Barrett/KMXT
Anchorage mayor, and Democratic candidate for U.S. Senate, Mark Begich was in Kodiak on Sunday for a campaign swing through Crab Fest.

After being courted for months by national Democratic figures, Anchorage Mayor Mark Begich entered the race for his party’s nomination last month to try and unseat U.S. Senator Ted Stevens in the fall general election.

He’s the son of the late Nick Begich Senior, who, while Alaska’s lone congressman, was lost and presumed killed on a small plane flight in Southcentral Alaska. No remains of the crash have ever been found. Mark was just 10 years old when that happened, and because of it, was not attracted to politics until his 20s. He has since served on the Anchorage Assembly and is in his second term as Anchorage mayor. He was once the driver for Tony Knowles when the former governor was mayor of Anchorage.

A candidate can’t come to Kodiak – especially during Crab Festival – without addressing Crab Rationalization, the privatization program earmarked into existence by Ted Stevens which has cost Kodiak hundreds of jobs, both on boats and at processing plants:

(Crab Ratz 30 sec “… and has a direct impact.”)

He vowed that if he were elected to the senate, he would not let industry have more influence than science and community input:

(Crab Ratz 2 20 sec “… science wasn’t part of the equation.”)

He also said crewmen seemed to have been left out of the equation as well:

(Crewmen 28 sec “… an economic impact to these families.”)

Rising fuel prices and global warming threaten Alaska’s fishing industry, as well:

(Energy climate 34 sec “… a common thread is energy.”)

Begich defended the Bush Administration’s listing of the Polar Bear as threatened, and questioned Governor Sarah Palin’s lawsuit to overturn it:

(Polar Bears 21 sec “… to the secretary, we can still do that.”)

He also called for a more focused war on terror and to better take care of America’s returning veterans.

(War 29 sec “… are going to have to have.”)

In the primary election, Begich is facing Frank Vondersaar of Homer, and former Republican Moderate Party founder Ray Metcalfe of Anchorage.

I’m Jay Barrett.


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