Alaska state Reps. Gabrielle LeDoux of Anchorage, Louise Stutes of Kodiak, and Paul Seaton of Homer, are guilty.
And they’re not guilty of any ordinary crime either. It’s not like they shot someone or, even worse, stole their Xbox. No, their crime is much more heinous than that. They have been charged, tried, and found guilty by the Alaska Republican Party of cooperation! Judge Tuckerman Babcock presiding.
That’s right. This nefarious threesome has blatantly, and without regard to marching orders, decided to conspire with (ugh) Democrats to craft a realistic budget for the state.
Their only defense is that their constituents wanted them to do something in the coming session. Do something? Who do they think they are, representatives of the people? Don’t they realize that there are vital political points to be scored? All they had to do was stay in lockstep with the party to block, stall, and obfuscate their way to the next election. But not this treacherous trio. No, they had to listen to the people.
Well, not so fast you shifty defectors. Not on Chairman Babcock’s watch. No sir! Colluding with the opposition to reach a bipartisan solution through compromise and collaboration is so mid-20th century.
Have you not been paying attention to how things are done now? It is important that you realize agenda trumps all. And the agenda of the party is to get its members elected, period.
Let me break it down for you this way. You will vilify the opposition at every opportunity. Take words out of context. Present half truths and innuendo as facts. Extrapolate to an extreme that would make Glenn Beck blush. I know you know the drill.
If you open a dialogue with that other party it tends to cast them in a light of plausibility. That, in turn, can have the side effect of making them appear acceptable. You don’t want voters thinking the opposition is acceptable, do you? What you should want is to gin up suspicion and fear. Make the other side as repugnant as possible. That way you become the only reasonable alternative, no matter how unreasonably you act.
Are you taking notes Reps. LeDoux, Stutes, and Seaton? I hope you are.
Let’s take the current budget troubles as an example. According to the Alaska Office of Management and Budget, the governor is proposing a budget of $4.2 billion next year. That’s $1.7 billion less than last year. That’s also 2,500 fewer state employees with 400 more to follow by December 2017. With current projected revenues falling almost $1 billion short of the budget, there may be a problem. Actually, the projected number is around $890 million; so we’re looking at a about a 21 percent shortfall.
I know. I know. Someone wake me when all these fact thingamabobs are over.
Now enter those sneaky, backroom-dealing Democrats, who while winning a couple more seats in the House are still in the minority. Nevertheless, they, along with LeDoux, Stutes, and Seaton, have cobbled together a bi-partisan coalition. This cabal is now intent on addressing the budget with a mixture of taxes and a tweaking of the PFD. And how about the PFD? Just who do these folks think they are, messing around with my redistributed private sector wealth?
What are you three R.I.N.O.’s thinking? Do you not realize that when you do actual work and seek actual solutions to actual problems you make the rest of us look bad? When you compromise with the opposition, you imply that they have legitimate points; that they actually represent a legitimate constituency. A constituency, I might add, that probably didn’t vote for you. For God’s sake you guys — what do you think you are doing? Sure the word “representative” is in your title, but let’s not get carried away.
And what about this flirtation with taxes? Have you three completely lost your minds? If there is one thing the Grand Old Party is associated with, it is TAXPHOBIA. The plan is to keep cutting taxes, cutting regulations, and keep putting more and more money into the hands of fewer and fewer people until the whole underpinnings of society come trickling down around our ears.
Have you three not read the handbook?
Webster defines traitor as: “A person who betrays his country, cause, friends, etc.” If you scratch out that part about country, you have the situation the party finds itself in.
For this reason, the Republican Party of Alaska has pulled its support from LeDoux, Stutes, and Seaton. For putting the people of Alaska above partisan politics, they are officially persona non grata and shall receive severe and glowering looks from party members as they pass in the hall.
When doing your job conflicts with a political agenda, the proper path should be obvious to any party loyalist. So let this be a lesson to anyone who is thinking about straying from the pack. You are being watched.