NEWS: State of the State Response: Democratic Leaders Share Vision for Alaska

Response to State of the State focuses on Economy, Education


January 22, 2014

JUNEAU – Tonight, Senate Democratic Leader Hollis French and House Democratic Leader Chris Tuck (both D-Anchorage) offered their vision for Alaska in response to the governor’s State of the State speech. Both speeches are linked below.

“Democrats want to make Alaska a place where innovation and ideas flourish, our resources are put to good use, and where education is the highest quality,” said Tuck. “And as a result, the economy thrives and good jobs are plenty… On the economy, energy and education—we are ready to lead. ”

The two leaders focused on standing up for Alaskans’ interests, especially when it comes to education and creating jobs and opportunity from developing the state’s resources.

“We want to build a stronger Alaska from the ground up,” said French. “Education is a constitutional obligation and it can’t be done with half measures and it certainly can’t be done with flat funding… Diverting public money to private schools simply continues to deprive our public schools of the resources they need to do their job.”

French and Tuck also addressed the need to make sure Alaskans receive the maximum benefit from a natural gas pipeline.

“If we are going to make sure this is a good deal for Alaskans, we must be strong, smart, and diligent advocates for Alaskans’ interests in every step of the process,” said Tuck. “We want a gasline, but we cannot afford to give away our gas like the governor did our oil.”

“Our approach to the gasline is simple:  Gasline Yes. Giveaway No,” said French.

“We must be good stewards of our resource wealth,” said French. “Energy propels Alaska now and education will continue to propel it in the future.”  

“We have not forgotten who we work for,” said Tuck. “We work for Alaskans first, and Alaskans always!”

REP. TUCK speech:
SEN. FRENCH speech: