“Stop the Duopoly!” for fair elections and open debates
The Lt. Governor oversees elections and approves ballot measures. I will encourage legislation that does away with the expensive and unnecessary Primary elections. They have been a joke, with candidates trading out after the election (2014, 2016), U.S. candidates from out-of-state (2014, 2016, 2018), and “Independents” running to become Democrat nominees (2018). The exclusive Republican ballot was designed as a special privilege to only the Republican candidates. Every party and political group should have its own party convention/voting, in the spring, and select one nominee for every open candidacy. Concurrently, we need to do away with the Majority and Minority caucuses, which also perpetuate the two-party duopoly. We should consider Ranked-choice voting.
The Alaska laws, with their closed primary system and draconian ballot access requirements, discourage alternate parties. Ballot access/viability for alternate parties is also influenced by the closed , publicly-funded primary (encouraging registration as independents) and having to attain more than 3% of the statewide vote in the General Election. I will encourage legislation to open our elections to more choices.
“Taxation is Theft” of the PFD and hard-earned income
Libertarians oppose any kind of income tax, but I am most disgusted with regressive taxes (the PFD robbery), and progressive taxes (like the federal income tax). Dividends belong to the citizens. As Lieutenant Governor, I will ensure that the citizens have the chance to vote for or against any broad-based taxes. I will also approve voting on Constitutional Amendments to protect the PFD or to approve or disapprove of any new taxes.
Taxing businesses, even the oil businesses, is also the wrong approach to growing the private economy. Businesses that rely on our natural resources, as in tourism, film-producing, and mining, should pay flat percentage fees and royalties that will continue into the future. We also need to quit taxing small businesses, and need to encourage entrepreneurship by easing regulations.
This year, I looked at the PFD application for a place to mark how much I voluntarily could give back to the State government. I saw lists of charities, but no place to say what percent of the PFD I would donate back. People vote with their wallets. Restore the full PFD, and let individuals decide what their taxes will be! We could put a section on the PFD application to submit additional monies to the State. We could call it a “voluntary tax.”
“No more Nanny State”—End the Welfare State and Consolidate Education Expenses
The two largest departments in the general budget are Health and Social Services, and Education. Most of my professional life has been in these areas. I am at the Governor’s direction in curbing the waste, fraud, and injustice in these departments. Consolidating school districts and offering online courses to rural students can save greatly on personnel costs and improve test scores. To break the welfare cycle, our public schools must offer instruction in taking personal financial responsibility for choices, instead of relying on the state to support our families. I can work with the public unions to be part of the process, too. As for Social Services, it is beyond belief that Alaska has one of the highest percentages of children in foster care in the nation. I am well-known as a crusader for Parents’ Rights. Judges should be held accountable for excessive Terminations of Parental Rights. In the medical area, payments to medical providers need to be prompt and accurate.