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What the heck? Explaining the Alaska Senate race.

post #1 of 27
Thread Starter 
Okay, I've gotten more phone calls, e-mails, and IMs about this topic since November 4th. I will attempt to explain it. First some background. My Mom has lived in Alaska for the past 6 years. She's a nurse that flies into the bush and assists in care of native families. She lives in Anchorage so she gets dual perspective on the state. We also talk twice day every day. She is my best friend, next to my husband.

The question I keep getting is how the heck can Alaska re-elect a convicted felon their embattled Senator Ted Stevens? Well, it's kind of complex. In the bush in Alaska Stevens is known as "Uncle Ted". He's run sewers into native villages, assisted in obtaining federal funds for Native Corporations*, and is a war hero. To sum this all up, my Mom's neighbor said this, "Every time I sit on a warm toilet seat I thank GOD for Ted Stevens."

Native Corporations- The native Alaskan populations don't have a reservation system like in the lower 48. Here's a list of them.
post #2 of 27
So is that what you would call a morning constitution?
post #3 of 27
The state is very conservative and are probably already suspicious of the wave of Democrats going into office from the rest of the country. The trial was in Washington so it is easy to attribute the conviction to ne'er-do-wells from the lower 48 who have it out for them. Also, it is a strategic move because Stevens can resign now and the Republican governor can appoint another Republican.

They also re-elected Don Young whose investigation of wrong-doing lead to the Stevens indictment.
post #4 of 27
I figured it something like Louisiana. They would vote in obvious crooks because there were ways in which they made their lives better.
post #5 of 27
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by katachtig View Post
The state is very conservative and are probably already suspicious of the wave of Democrats going into office from the rest of the country. The trial was in Washington so it is easy to attribute the conviction to ne'er-do-wells from the lower 48 who have it out for them. Also, it is a strategic move because Stevens can resign now and the Republican governor can appoint another Republican.

They also re-elected Don Young whose investigation of wrong-doing lead to the Stevens indictment.
I asked my Mom why Sarah Palin was elected at their governor. She said, "She was on the anybody BUT Frank Murkowski with an R next to their name ticket. We would have elected a board with a mean face on it had it been a Republican."

As for Alaska being conservative I'd say yes and no. Yes in a voting habit way, but no in a social way. I've never felt more comfortable in any place in my entire life. I was accepted simply because I would help my Mom's neighbors, and I could cook a decent meal. The rest of my life was never questioned. I'd honestly say that it's more socially progressive than where I live now.
post #6 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by CC12 View Post
I figured it something like Louisiana. They would vote in obvious crooks because there were ways in which they made their lives better.
well, to be fair - often, both candidates were crooks [i have lots of relatives in Louisiana ]
post #7 of 27
I watched a debate on C-SPAN between Sen. Stevens and his challenger for the recent election, and the challenger, a mayor, was very well-spoken, explained things coherently and logically, answered questions directly, appeared competent, confident, but modest. Stevens, on the other hand, appeared to be suffering some type of dementia. He could hardly string a sentence together, and got fairly huffy at times. I don't know if that's how he's always been or whether he's had some kind of health problems. But if I was a first-time voter in Alaska, I sure wouldn't be too impressed with Ted Stevens.
post #8 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by katachtig View Post
...a strategic move because Stevens can resign now and the Republican governor can appoint another Republican.....
Actually, Alaska law requires that a special election be held. Gov. Palin cannot appoint either herself (as has been going around the net) or anyone else. She can RUN in the election, but that's as far as it goes.
post #9 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by laureen227 View Post
well, to be fair - often, both candidates were crooks [i have lots of relatives in Louisiana ]
Me too. New Years Day we eat Gumbo and Creole food as a tradition with my mother's family. At funerals on her side you were guaranteed someone would supply some delicious Creole cuisine for everyone.
I read that they even had bumper stickers that read vote for the crook, its important. Of course it was against David Duke , but he won.
post #10 of 27
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by laureen227 View Post
well, to be fair - often, both candidates were crooks [i have lots of relatives in Louisiana ]
Tell me about it. I came from a district that voted for James Traficant over and over and over and over....

(Yes that's his real hair. Also, he's so bad that an Ohio resident has created a James Traficant random quote generator)
post #11 of 27
And I lived in a state (Missouri) that elected a dead man (replacement candidate unknown) over John Ashcroft. Honestly, when we voted that year, we walked into the voting booth not even knowing who would be elected in that office, and the preference was still the unknown candidate. That's how much Missouri hated Ashcroft.
post #12 of 27
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Momofmany View Post
And I lived in a state (Missouri) that elected a dead man (replacement candidate unknown) over John Ashcroft. Honestly, when we voted that year, we walked into the voting booth not even knowing who would be elected in that office, and the preference was still the unknown candidate. That's how much Missouri hated Ashcroft.
That's so funny that I'm almost at a loss for words.

Allllright everyone.... confess.... every state has some sort of really embarrassing politician. Post 'em here.
post #13 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by lookingglass View Post
That's so funny that I'm almost at a loss for words.
And you realize what happened to Ashcroft right after Missouri booted him out of their state? Yup, Bush appointed him as attorney general of the U.S. What teed me off the most about this appointment was the fact that my grandfather's cousin was the attorney general under Eisenhower, and I took it as a personal insult to my family.

I confess. I voted for the dead person.
post #14 of 27
Bush might have been better off if he had appointed the dead man instead.
post #15 of 27
I'm just catching this on some of the blogs. They found a lot of uncounted votes in Alaska, and they are estimating its just shy of 30% of the total votes in Alaska. Considering most polls, including Steven's own pollsters had him losing by a wide margin, the presidential margin poll showed a much closer race, and the voter turnout this year was the 2nd lowest in its history (that in a year when their own governor was running for VP), things look a bit suspicious up there.

I'm looking for regular media reports now.
post #16 of 27
I heard 30,000 were found.

We had a congresswoman who freaked out an a meth binge and tried to kill her boyfriends new girlfriend. Then we had one who was embezzling.

Apparently the Dems got rid of a right winger who was blocking bills right and left that would have benefited the city. She was the Tom Delay of Oregon. They set their sights on her and she was outta here.

I believe our new mayor is gay. Not sure. But I think. oh and we have a transgender mayor in Silverton Oregon.
post #17 of 27
It's 90,000 uncounted votes, which is roughly 30% of the total votes for the state. Here's the latest article I could find. MSNBC pulled this from AP Press.

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/27677265/

Quote:
ANCHORAGE, Alaska - A week after Election Day, about 30 percent of the Alaska votes that will decide the fate of convicted U.S. Sen. Ted Stevens haven't been counted.

The Alaska Division of Elections expects to count most of the roughly 90,000 early, absentee ballots or questioned ballots remaining on Wednesday.
post #18 of 27
It isn't like voter fraud is going on. What do you mean "found"? THey weren't lost.

http://www.adn.com/news/alaska/story/586095.html

Quote:
Why are there so many votes left uncounted so long after the election?

Elections director Gail Fenumiai says there's always a lag in counting absentee votes in Alaska, where far-flung communities and sometimes erratic mail delivery mean ballots can trickle in for days.

"It's not really taking any longer," Fenumiai said.
post #19 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by ckblv View Post
It isn't like voter fraud is going on. What do you mean "found"? THey weren't lost.

http://www.adn.com/news/alaska/story/586095.html
That makes sense - the state is bigger than an awful lot of countries, with less infrastructure. . Fifteen days seem like a long time to wait for overseas ballots to arrive, though.
post #20 of 27
http://www.politico.com/blogs/scorec...r_Stevens.html

Quote:
Democrat Mark Begich has taken his first lead of the election over scandal-plagued Sen. Ted Stevens (R-Alaska) as absentee votes continue to be counted by Alaska elections officials.

With about 41,000 absentee votes tabulated today, Begich leads Stevens by a three-vote margin, 125,019 votes to 125,016. There are still about 50,000 outstanding absentee ballots left to be counted.
And on the Minnesota front, Franken is behind by 204 votes. In Georgia, the 2 candidates are within less than 1/2%. I'm amazed at how close these races are.
post #21 of 27
http://ap.google.com/article/ALeqM5i...mC9bQD94E3GA80

With 30,000 votes left to count.

This is just so bizarre!
post #22 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by lookingglass View Post
Okay, I've gotten more phone calls, e-mails, and IMs about this topic since November 4th. I will attempt to explain it. First some background. My Mom has lived in Alaska for the past 6 years. She's a nurse that flies into the bush and assists in care of native families. She lives in Anchorage so she gets dual perspective on the state. We also talk twice day every day. She is my best friend, next to my husband.

The question I keep getting is how the heck can Alaska re-elect a convicted felon their embattled Senator Ted Stevens? Well, it's kind of complex. In the bush in Alaska Stevens is known as "Uncle Ted". He's run sewers into native villages, assisted in obtaining federal funds for Native Corporations*, and is a war hero. To sum this all up, my Mom's neighbor said this, "Every time I sit on a warm toilet seat I thank GOD for Ted Stevens."

Native Corporations- The native Alaskan populations don't have a reservation system like in the lower 48. Here's a list of them.
Senator Ted Stevens of Alaska has had ALL charges dropped against him and the prosecution is in BIG trouble.
So, I guess he is not a convicted felon anymore.

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20090407/ap_on_go_ot/stevens

Quote:
WASHINGTON – A judge has dismissed charges against former Sen. Ted Stevens because of prosecutorial misconduct and has ordered a criminal contempt investigation of the prosecutors.

"In nearly 25 years on the bench, I've never seen anything approaching the mishandling and misconduct that I've seen in this case," U.S. District Judge Emmet Sullivan said in the opening moments of a hearing.
post #23 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by Momofmany View Post
And on the Minnesota front, Franken is behind by 204 votes. In Georgia, the 2 candidates are within less than 1/2%. I'm amazed at how close these races are.
How does this happen? Or, why are some of these races allowed to drag on so long? The election was last year.
post #24 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by Essayons89 View Post
How does this happen? Or, why are some of these races allowed to drag on so long? The election was last year.
That post was dated last November. The thread was resurrected today.
post #25 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by rapunzel47 View Post
That post was dated last November. The thread was resurrected today.
I know but my questions still stand. Why is it taking Minnesota so long to finalize the results of an election that took place in November?
post #26 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by Essayons89 View Post
I know but my questions still stand. Why is it taking Minnesota so long to finalize the results of an election that took place in November?
The delay was due to a lawsuit by Coleman. Franken has the lead by 312 votes as of today. Coleman is not giving up when the returns are this close.

http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2009...lots-included/

IMO - take it like a man and concede Coleman. It's not dignified to keep fighting.
post #27 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by Momofmany View Post
The delay was due to a lawsuit by Coleman. Franken has the lead by 312 votes as of today. Coleman is not giving up when the returns are this close.

http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2009...lots-included/

IMO - take it like a man and concede Coleman. It's not dignified to keep fighting.
Thank you for the explanation. I heard about the votes on the news while Dad and I were heading to Bass Pro Shops and I was wondering why it was taking so long.

I have no love for Al Franken but I agree with you. Politicians make children fighting over a lollipop seem mature.
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