States & Candidates

States can change the direction of our country.

Alaska 2020

Goal

Defend a bipartisan coalition

Chamber Makeup

State Senate

7 Democrats

13 Republicans

State House

15 Democrats

23 Republicans

2 Independents

Opportunity Assessment

Alaska is at a critical turning point: will the state be led by a bipartisan coalition that has its eyes on the future? Or will it revert to an extreme right-wing agenda that continues to put corporate special interests first—no matter who it hurts? Empowering and growing the coalition is the only way to ensure the former.

The Stakes

For decades, leadership in the state has prioritized ideological interests over policies that benefit families and working people. The result? A financial and social services crisis that lawmakers can no longer ignore. Recently, House Minority members:

  • Allowed critical infrastructure like the Alaska Marine Highway to deteriorate, cutting off rural coastal communities from access to food, supplies, and medical care.
  • Advanced draconian, multi-year cuts to Medicaid, even though more than one in four Alaskans rely on Medicaid for healthcare coverage.
  • Supported eliminating early childhood education, benefits to low-income seniors, student scholarships, and the Power Cost Equalization fund that reduces utility costs in rural Alaska. Shifted costs to local governments by backing out of longstanding commitments to fund school bond debt reimbursement.
  • Worked to remove conflict-of-interest rules on state legislators—which would enable further cozying with corporate special interests.

The bipartisan coalition is:

  • Committed to achieving a balanced fiscal plan that is fiscally responsible and supports long-term economic growth.
  • Committed to expanding affordable healthcare for all Alaskans, including by protecting Medicaid from cuts, and implementing an innovative program to reduce vaccination costs for patients.
  • Taking courageous action to put the long-term interests of Alaskans above short-term political interests.
  • Working across party lines to achieve solutions to complex problems at a time when the rest of the country becomes increasingly polarized.

2020 Political Landscape

  • In 2020, the entire House and half the Senate are up for election.  A bipartisan group of Democrats, Republicans, and Independents control the chamber because the slim majority of Republicans elected to the House could not form a functional caucus.
  • Flipping House Minority-held State House seats would strengthen Bipartisan Coalition’s ability to provide a bulwark against destructive, short-sighted budget cuts.
  • In 2018:
    • Independent U.S. House candidate Alyse Galvin won a majority of state legislative seats in the state.
    • Four House Minority incumbents are in districts carried by Galvin—but only one has joined Democrats in the bipartisan governing majority.
    • Alaska featured the closest state legislative race of 2018 when Republican Bart LeBon won a seat outside Fairbanks by one vote.