Alaska Politics

Political news coverage from the Alaska Public Radio Network.

Rare Conference Brings Russian, American Officials To Table on Arctic Oil

A conference underway this week is trying to work around sanctions and rhetoric in order to focus on mutual interests in the Bering Sea. The Russian delegation is in Alaska to prepare for oil spills and increased marine traffic in the region.

Arizona senator on a pork hunt targets Kodiak

Alaska’s congressional delegation cheered last year when the Missile Defense Agency awarded an $80 million contract to the Kodiak missile launch facility. But in the U.S. Senate this week, the contract was at the top of one Republican senator’s pork list. Listen now

Alaska lawmakers learn about a subsistence superfood

The state’s food safety codes currently don’t allow seal oil in public facilities like nursing homes. But a movement is underway to serve the beloved food to Elders.

Poll Shows Close Race for Senate Seat

Ed Ronco, KCAW – Sitka The first poll taken after Senator Lisa Murkowski conceded the race to Joe Miller shows a tight race between...

Obama To Name New White House Chief-of-Staff

Libby Casey, APRN – Washington DC A member of President Obama’s inner circle with connections to Alaska is expected to take one of the...

Murkowski claims several Alaska victories in year-end spending, tax bills

Congress has agreed on a year-end spending and tax package, though the final votes in the House and Senate have yet to be taken. The legislation sets federal funding levels for the next year and extends several tax breaks.

Facing Budget Cuts, Aleutians East to Close Cold Bay School

The Aleutians East Borough is closing its second school in three years. The school board voted this week to shut down the Cold Bay School, with state budget cuts looming and enrollment on the decline. Locals are worried the closure could put the tiny community in jeopardy. Download Audio

NSB Mayor Race Heading for Runoff Election

The North Slope Borough mayor’s race is heading for a run off election. Three candidates were vying for the position, Charlotte Brower, former borough mayor George Ahmaogak Sr and Fenton Rexford. Brower received 639 votes, Ahmaogak 601 and Rexford 583.

RUNNING: State Senate, District L Anchorage

Johnny Ellis (D) and Richard Wanda (R) are running for State Senate, District L Anchorage in the Alaska General Election on ...

Offshore lease schedule for Beaufort draws flak

Democrats in Congress are sounding the alarm about the Interior Department's efforts to hold an offshore oil lease sale in the Beaufort Sea next year. Listen now

Sen. Begich Puts Air Force General’s Promotion On Hold

Alaska Senator Mark Begich put a hold on the promotion of an Air Force General last week, citing frustration with a lack of answers about the proposed move of the F-16 fighter squadron from Eielson Air Force Base to Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson.

Marijuana Entrepreneurs Face Special Business Burdens

Alaskans who hope to operate marijuana businesses will have to defy U.S. drug law, of course. But they’ll also face other federal rules they’re likely to find severely inconvenient and perhaps crippling to their enterprise.

Meat Packing Plant on the Chopping Block

Palmer's state run livestock slaughterhouse is facing budget woes, and the state may privatize the facility.

In Wake Of “Education Session,” Democrats Run Teacher Candidates

In the aftermath of what Gov. Sean Parnell dubbed the "education session," half a dozen of the new candidates being fielded by the Democratic Party are educators. The most high profile of these is Bob Williams, who was once named the Alaska Teacher of the Year and is now a candidate for lieutenant governor.

House passes Indigenous Peoples Day bill

The state House unanimously passed a bill Friday morning that would create Indigenous Peoples Day on the 18th of October every year and Katie John Day on May 31. Download Audio

Turnout is third-lowest in Alaska state primary history

Of registered voters, 18.2 percent cast ballots, with five precincts and some absentee ballots left to count. Listen now

AIDEA Briefs Federal Commission On Ambler Road

The state says it will cost as much as $400 million to build a controversial proposed mining road to Ambler. But some opponents of the road think that figure is too low. Download Audio

New legislative leaders prepare to start work ahead of challenging session

Both houses of the legislature will have new leaders in January. Incoming Senate President Pete Kelly and House Speaker Bryce Edgmon both said they have positive feelings toward the other. But they lead very different caucuses that will likely have different priorities in the coming legislative session. Listen Now

Walker Names National Guard Special Investigator

Gov. Bill Walker has named a retired judge as his federal investigator into the Alaska National Guard. Patricia Collins, a former Superior Court judge for Juneau, will conduct the investigation into the Alaska National Guard. Download Audio

Judge rules independents can run in Alaska Democratic primary

It’s not clear whether independent Gov. Bill Walker will run in the primary. A campaign spokesperson said Walker could not comment because it is a pending legal matter to which the state is a party. Listen now