Campaign Press Releases
Scott Hawkins is a good man with a beautiful family. I’ve enjoyed the time I’ve spent with him at campaign events over the past few months, learning more about his conservative principles and free-market solutions to Alaska’s challenges. While we were technically opponents, Scott unquestionably elevated the debate, laying out a positive vision for Alaska’s future− I found that Scott and I often agreed on more issues than we disagreed. While I understand his reasons for exiting the race, I welcome Scott’s continued involvement in Alaska politics, supporting candidates who share his firmly held belief that Alaska’s best days are ahead of us. Rose and I will keep Scott in our prayers, but we remain optimistic that his tenacity paired with a supportive, loving family will ensure a quick return to full health.
ANCHORAGE, May 16, 2018 — Gubernatorial candidate Mike Dunleavy today named three statewide co-chairs for his campaign: Dick Randolph of Fairbanks, John Moller of Juneau, and Kristie Babcock of Kenai.
“I am honored that these distinguished Alaskans have stepped forward to offer their experience, knowledge, and leadership skills to help advance my campaign,” said Dunleavy. “I couldn’t ask for a better mix of experience in business, politics, and knowledge of Alaska’s diverse communities than Dick Randolph, John Moller, and Kristie Babcock. All three share my strong commitment to bring back economic prosperity for the people of Alaska, to protect the Permanent Fund, and to ensure our state government abides by Constitutional principles.”
Dick Randolph is a business owner and former state lawmaker from Fairbanks. In his diverse career he has worked as a school teacher, miner, and a commercial fisherman in Bristol Bay. Randolph ran as a Libertarian candidate for Governor in 1982, and as a Republican primary candidate for Governor in 1986. Dunleavy applauded Randolph’s public policy leadership: “Dick is known as the ‘Father of the Income Tax Repeal,’ since he spearheaded the successful effort to repeal the state income tax in 1979-80. He’s been a staunch defender of the Permanent Fund Dividend. Dick has seen this state through good times and bad, and I’m delighted to have his help.” Randolph is married and has 5 children, 8 grandchildren, and 6 great grandchildren.
John Moller is a Juneau commercial fisherman and former Dutch Harbor crab boat skipper. Moller served nearly six years as Senior Rural Affairs Advisor under Governor Sean Parnell. He also served as the General Manager of a Community Development Quota group for more than a decade, working from Adak to Nome to Juneau to Washington, D.C. Moller is a partner with former Governor Sean Parnell in Navigate North Consultants, providing executive leadership and public policy advice for businesses, local governments and non-profits. He also owns his own consulting business, providing advice on matters related to Rural and Arctic Alaska. Moller is married with four children.
“My work has enabled me to travel to hundreds of Alaskans communities and meet dozens of community leaders around the state,” said Moller. “I believe Mike Dunleavy is the best choice to help meet the challenges of all Alaskans, including Bush infrastructure, energy, safe water, and local job creation. I am fully committed to help Mike Dunleavy become our next Governor.”
Kristie Babcock is a business owner and soccer mom from Kenai. Raised in Anchorage, she has also lived in Wasilla, Juneau, Ninilchik and Soldotna. Babcock served as Director of Boards and Commissions for Governor Frank Murkowski and also for Governor Walter Hickel, managing and advising on gubernatorial appointments to the state’s 150 boards and commissions, judicial appointments, and exempt state positions. She was the youngest member of Governor Hickel’s senior staff (1991-1994). Babcock served on the 2004 Conference of Alaskans, a group of 55 Alaskans convened to discuss the state’s budget challenges, where she stood out as an unwavering defender of the Permanent Fund Dividend.
Babcock has extensive political experience, including serving as Kenai Co-Chair for Frank Murkowski’s 2002 campaign for Governor, and managing Lyda Green’s 1994 campaign for Senate in Mat-Su. She is married with three birth children, two adopted children from China, and three stepchildren. “Mike Dunleavy’s commitment to keeping Alaskans safe, prosperous and free explains why I’m enthusiastically backing his campaign for Governor,” said Babcock.
Campaign Manager Brett Huber shared, “Our campaign has tremendous momentum, with grass roots support growing every day. We’re delighted to match that robust grass roots support with the high caliber of leadership that Randolph, Moller, and Babcock provide. These three standout Alaskans will represent Mike Dunleavy in a marvelous way.”
ANCHORAGE, May 3, 2018 — Gubernatorial candidate Mike Dunleavy today made the following statement regarding candidate Scott Hawkins’ announcement that he is receiving treatment for pancreatic cancer:
“I ask all Alaskans to join me in praying for Scott’s full recovery from this health challenge. I am encouraged by the positive statements from the medical professionals in charge of his treatment.
“All Alaskans who have personally battled cancer, or helped loved ones in the same struggle, can feel deep empathy for Scott and his family. I wish Scott well as he undergoes the medical treatments that will, we all pray, completely beat back this cancer.”
ANCHORAGE, May 2, 2018 — Gubernatorial candidate Mike Dunleavy today urged legislative leaders to “shelve” Governor Walker’s bill to restructure the Permanent Fund, SB 26, and oppose any changes to the Permanent Fund Dividend program without first taking the issue to a vote of the people.
“The Permanent Fund belongs to Alaskans, yet we have elected officials who are attempting to make the most profound changes in the entire history of the Permanent Fund without even asking Alaskans,” said Dunleavy. “Instead of trying to cram this proposal through in the waning days of a legislative session, they should shelve SB 26 and leave the Permanent Fund and the dividend program untouched.”
Dunleavy stated that the Permanent Fund program has worked well for nearly 40 years, but that recent actions by the Governor and some in the Legislature have undermined people’s trust in government. “There is a formula in state law for calculating dividends, and regrettably it’s been ignored – first by the Governor, and then the Legislature,” Dunleavy stated. “The full dividend needs to be paid to Alaskans, according to law, just like any other contractual obligation.”
The state’s current budget deficit was not created by the Permanent Fund dividend program, Dunleavy noted. “Our general fund budget is simply bloated, and this problem was not caused by the dividend program. Yet too many politicians prefer to take the ‘easy way out’ of slashing dividends rather than doing the tough work of actually shrinking the size of the bureaucracy. The Permanent Fund Dividend program is actually one component of state government that has worked well over the years. It pays for itself. We should leave it alone. Don’t fix what isn’t broken.”
Dunleavy pledged that he will protect the Permanent Fund and the PFD as Governor. “I fought hard to protect the Permanent Fund and the PFD in the State Senate, and this same strong commitment will guide me as Governor,” said Dunleavy. “This is an issue that transcends party politics. I don’t care if someone is a Democrat, Republican, or Independent, I think they’re wrong to pass bills that slash Alaskans’ dividend checks without first taking it to a vote of the people.”
ANCHORAGE, March 14, 2018 — Republican gubernatorial candidate Mike Dunleavy today denounced the decision of the Walker Administration’s Department of Fish and Game to impose radical restrictions on the king salmon season for the Susitna River system and Upper Cook Inlet.
“This unwarranted decision will deal a terrible blow to many Mat-Su businesses that depend on a thriving sport fishing economy, as well as thousands of Mat-Su residents who cherish this annual recreational tradition,” Dunleavy said.
Dunleavy observed that the decision to restrict king salmon fishing was based on a pre-season outlook, and not a biologically reliable forecast. Further, that in circumstances like this, sport fishing seasons can begin with restrictive measures in place until the mark recapture studies and weirs on key streams in Northern Cook Inlet, run by ADFG, presents enough data to allow informed decision on management.
“However one thinks a wisely-managed Department of Fish and Game should behave, this just isn’t it,” commented Dunleavy. “The folks who know the most about the fisheries resources in the Mat-Su recommended some modest, prudent steps to ensure that we preserve our salmon resource, including a reduced annual catch limit. But instead of implementing these sensible conservation measures, the Department opted for the ‘nuclear option’ without regard to the impact of the local economy or opportunity to Valley anglers. That decision is indefensible based on the data we have. It’s a shoddy way to be managing our fisheries.”
ANCHORAGE, March 13, 2018 – Mike Dunleavy, candidate for Governor, today made the following statement regarding this week’s legislative hearings on House Joint Resolution 23, a proposed constitutional amendment that would change the structure of the Permanent Fund and the annual dividend received by Alaskans.
“While HJR23 could go to the people for a vote, it shouldn’t. This measure fails to protect the fund, does nothing to limit future spending and puts the dividend in peril. Alaskan voters deserve the option of preserving the method for managing the Permanent Fund and calculating the annual PFD that has been in place in our statutes for decades. The Permanent Fund and PFD have worked well since these programs were created. If the current method is not broken, why fix it?” Dunleavy asked.
Dunleavy continued, “It’s a shame that one of the few things that government got right is now under attack. Governor Walker’s action in 2016 to cut the PFD in half was a loss for the people and a big win for a government that spends too much of our money.”
Dunleavy’s approach is to protect the Permanent Fund and the annual PFD by taking the statutory framework that has successfully managed the fund for decades and placing it within the constitution, thereby ensuring the people of Alaska have a voice in its future.
He added, “The people of Alaska have been completely ignored and sidetracked in this process and they are understandably upset. Our fiscal problems are not the result of the Permanent Fund or the PFD. There is nothing wrong with the fund or PFD. The problem is that Governor Walker, and some in the legislature, lack the political will to reduce spending, and have failed to forward constructive policies to put our struggling private sector economy back on track.”
Dunleavy concluded, “Special interests have always tried to get their hands on the Permanent Fund and PFD. With Governor Walker, they may have a chance. However, if the people demand that their legislators look out for their interests, and send to the people a constitutional amendment that protects the fund and PFD, I have no doubt the people of Alaska will act and vote to save both for future generations. This fund belongs to Alaskans. All discussion of its future should start with the people.
ANCHORAGE, March 10, 2018 — Republican gubernatorial candidate Mike Dunleavy today expressed his gratitude for the overwhelming recommendation he received from delegates attending the Alaska Republican Party’s statewide convention in Anchorage this weekend.
“I deeply appreciate this vote of confidence from several hundred of the most politically involved folks in our state,” said Dunleavy. “Every delegate I spoke with realizes that Alaska is not living up to its potential, and that we urgently need a course correction for our state. I’m grateful that a large majority of the delegates see my candidacy as a way to build an Alaska that is once again prosperous and optimistic.”
Dunleavy won the recommendation of 77 percent of delegates, more than any other candidate in the Republican Primary. The enthusiasm for Mike Dunleavy’s campaign is also reflected in the latest campaign finance reports, which indicate that he has received more contributions from individual Alaskans than all other Republican gubernatorial candidates added together.
Prior to Saturday’s vote on recommending candidates for statewide office, Dunleavy spoke to the assembled delegates and shared his agenda for confronting the many challenges facing the state.
“I’m truly excited about the opportunity to be the next Governor of the great state of Alaska. The problems we face as a state are serious. But as I have already made clear, they are not insurmountable. With the right leader, with well thought out policies, and the guts to implement those policies, Alaska’s future is incredibly bright.”
ANCHORAGE, February 9, 2018 — Republican gubernatorial candidate Mike Dunleavy today commented on Governor Bill Walker’s selection to fill the vacant Senate seat in District E.
“Governor Walker has made his choice – and he chose to ignore the elected nominees of the Republican District leaders. His decision is an affront to these men and women who literally spent hundreds of hours vetting 11 different applicants for this seat,” said Dunleavy.
Dunleavy observed that the traditional process of selecting from a list of nominees chosen by local party leaders is designed to help maintain public confidence in representative government. He predicted that violating the process would have unfortunate consequences.
“The crucial question is this: Who owns this seat, the voters of District E, or Governor Walker? The Governor has chosen to substitute his own judgment for the views of local leaders. This kind of arrogance has become a trademark of this Governor, and it gravely erodes public confidence that their representative in Juneau is there to represent their values, instead of the Governor’s personal agenda. Once again, Governor Walker ignores the will of the people,” Dunleavy stated.
ANCHORAGE, January 18, 2018 — Mike Dunleavy today commented on the statement released by Charlie Huggins in which he suspends his gubernatorial campaign.
“Along with the rest of Alaska, I learned last evening, that my friend Charlie Huggins has decided to suspend his campaign for Governor. Charlie is a leader, a man of God, of country, and of family. I am honored to have served the people of Alaska alongside him.”
“Charlie and I spoke via phone last night, and I look forward to sitting down together and talking more with him as the campaign moves forward.”
“I fully agree with Charlie that Alaska’s best days are ahead, and I understand and respect the strength and courage it takes to make difficult decisions like this, made in the best interest of Alaska and for Alaskans. Along with Charlie, I know without question that Alaska absolutely must elect a new Governor.”
“There is much at stake for our great state and this election is critical. The path forward starts this year, with a new leader who will listen to Alaskans and take immediate action to improve public safety, cut the size and scope of state government, and protect the Permanent Fund and PFD.”
“Alaska’s best days are ahead, and I have great optimism. More than anything today, however, I just want to thank Charlie and his beautiful family for their service and commitment to our country, and to our state. Charlie Huggins is truly a great American. I am honored to know him, and blessed to call him friend.”
ANCHORAGE, January 10, 2018 — Mike Dunleavy today commented on the addition of new political talent to his gubernatorial campaign team.
“I’m very glad to announce that Michael Pauley will be joining the campaign as Director of Strategy,” Dunleavy said. “Pauley has worked as a manager or consultant on dozens of campaigns and his broad experience will be invaluable for our campaign operation.”
Pauley is a graduate of Georgetown University in Washington, D.C., and has also twice completed the Republican National Committee’s Campaign Management College. He worked during the 1990s as a field operative for the National Republican Congressional Committee, the branch of the national party focused on winning U.S. House campaigns.
Pauley also has extensive experience with Alaska public policy and political campaigns. He worked as a legislative aide for former Senator Loren Leman (R-Anchorage) from 1996 – 2000 and served as the strategic consultant for Leman’s winning campaign for Lieutenant Governor in 2002. Pauley has also assisted with campaigns for several other Alaska legislators, including former Senator Fred Dyson (R-Eagle River) and Senator Pete Kelly (R-Fairbanks).
In 2010, Pauley was the strategic director for the successful campaign to pass an Alaska ballot initiative to require parental notification prior to abortion. Pauley has been a frequent advocate for various conservative policies, and was one of the founding board members of the Alaska Family Council.
“The decades of experience that Pauley brings to the table will be an important resource as our campaign continues to expand,” said Dunleavy. “Along with Campaign Manager Brett Huber and Deputy Campaign Manager Amanda Price, Pauley will be a crucial member of my team as we work to convey my positive message about how Alaskans can work together to fix what’s broken, increase opportunity, and create new wealth in our great state.”
ANCHORAGE, January 8, 2018 — Senator Mike Dunleavy today issued the following statement regarding his service in the Alaska State Senate:
“For the last five years, it’s been an honor and privilege to represent my constituents in the Legislature. I have striven to faithfully advocate for their values and priorities, and I’m proud of what we’ve been able to accomplish.
“Yet I’ve come to the conclusion that without new leadership in the Governor’s office, there is a practical limit to what any individual or caucus in the Legislature can achieve to turn this state around. I believe the best way I can effectively advocate for my constituents’ values is to devote 100 percent of my time and energy to the cause of ensuring that Alaska elects a new Governor in 2018. I am accordingly resigning from my seat in the State Senate.
“One criticism I’ve made of state government is that it continuously grows and takes on too many responsibilities, and does many of them poorly. It’s far preferable to do fewer things, and do them with excellence. I think that maxim must apply to individuals as well –especially legislators.
“This past Saturday I shared my decision with the local Republican Party leadership in our district. I am pleased to share that their reactions were very positive and understanding. These local Republican leaders bear the responsibility for nominating a list of persons who are capable of filling out the short remainder of my Senate term. I have the utmost confidence they will choose excellent nominees.
“I sent a letter to Senate President Pete Kelly this morning informing him of my resignation. I shared my appreciation for his leadership in the Senate, and for the collaboration that I have enjoyed with my former colleagues in the Senate Majority.”