Young, Crawford Debate Mostly Directed by Audience in Juneau

Dave Donaldson, APRN – Juneau

Thursday, Congressman Don Young and his challenger, Democrat Harry Crawford faced an audience in Juneau who were more interested in specific issues than in personal ones.

Young says he voluntarily stepped down from positions that would have allowed him to use his 38 years of seniority until ethics investigations were completed.  He told members of the Juneau Chamber of Commerce that he’s now ready to go back to work.

Crawford said that as a Republican, Young faces a majority of Democrats in the House, the Senate and the White House.  And says the congressman has not shown he is able to work with them.

Young says the nation’s voters will repudiate Democratic leadership, repeating his prediction that he will be a chairman next year.

The forum was mostly directed by the audience, however.  And their questions covered a broad range of issues that the two could face.   For example – a recent Forest Service decision not to follow the Tongass Land Management Plan. Both Young and Crawford agreed the Agriculture Department had overstepped its authority.  Crawford called it a reason he should be in Congress.

The two also agreed on the need for more and better use of sustainable and renewable energy.  Crawford has been a promoter of specific projects – such as the Fire Island Wind Power farm in Anchorage, and development of the Chakachamna hydro project.    Young, however, found the shortcoming to be at the state level.

The two candidates will meet again in Fairbanks on the Oct. 25.

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