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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: 10/30/2014

ANCHORAGE —  Senator Mark Begich has earned an endorsement from the the Bristol Bay Times & Dutch Harbor Fisherman, the primary newspapers serving Dillingham, Naknek, King Salmon, Southwest Villages and the Aleutians.  The endorsement touts Begich’s bipartisan approach to solving problems, the significance of his seat on the powerful Appropriations Committee, and his work supporting subsistence.

Jason Evans, publisher, writes in the endorsement:

“I also feel we need a balance in our country. We need both Republicans and Democrats. We need ideas from both sides to make better decisions. Two years ago I voted for Sen. Lisa Murkowski and this year I voted for Sen. Begich.”

Begich has also received reelection endorsements from the Arctic Sounder, Juneau EmpireFairbanks Daily News-MinerPhoenix Seward Logand the Anchorage Press.

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: 10/30/2014

ANCHORAGE —  U.S. Senator Mark Begich has been endorsed for reelection by the Arctic Sounder, the newspaper serving the Northwest Arctic and the North Slope of Alaska.

In its endorsement, the Arctic Sounder recognized Begich’s strong record of fighting for Alaskans, belief in subsistence rights, clout on the Appropriations Committee, and the importance of a bipartisan Congressional delegation.

Highlights from the endorsement:

“Sen. Begich also has six years of seniority now; seniority in the U.S. Senate worked great for Alaska and I for one do not want to give up on it now. We have two U.S. senators from Alaska on the powerful Appropriations Committee, which is unheard of in the Senate.” 

“I appreciate that entrepreneurial spirit. Begich has been supportive of Alaska Native subsistence rights and travels extensively throughout Alaska, and as Michelle Anderson, president of Ahtna said so very well, “we must stand behind the man that stands behind us.”

Begich has also received reelection endorsements from the Bristol Bay Times, Juneau Empire, Fairbanks Daily News-Miner, Phoenix Seward Logand the Anchorage Press.

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Veterans, Ebola, ISIS & Military Sexual Assault — Begich Proposed Solutions

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: 10/29/2014

ANCHORAGE — In Channel 2’s U.S. Senate debate Mark Begich put his record of results and serious solutions front and center while Dan Sullivan continued to rely on talking points and avoid Alaska issues as basic as earmarks.

“Before tonight’s debate the Koch brothers committed another $600,000 to attack ads against Mark Begich. Tonight Alaskans saw what the Kochs, Karl Rove and Outside groups are paying for in Dan Sullivan, a candidate who won’t discuss issues important to Alaska who is trying to buy a Senate seat for himself, not Alaskans,” said Max Croes, Alaskans for Begich Communications Director.

Mark Begich continued to showcase the results he’s delivered on behalf of Alaska and the serious solutions he puts forward to address issues important to Alaska.
  • Veterans — VA wait times in Alaska were brought down from over 900 to nearly zero after Mark Begich promoted agreements between local health care clinics and the VA to deliver care closer to home. Alaska veterans can now receive health care from local clinics, without having to travel to Anchorage or Seattle for care.
  • Ebola — Begich demanded the Centers for Disease Control provide Ebola kits for Alaska, supports screening and quarantine efforts at airports and has personally visited two Alaska hospitals to discuss Ebola readiness.
  • ISIS — Begich has made clear that Arab nations need to step up and provide combat troops and support. America can’t provide hundreds of millions in cash and weapons to unknown Syrian rebels committing our nation to another open-ended conflict in the Middle East.
  • Military Sexual Assault — Perpetrators of sexual assault shouldn’t be able to adjudicate the claims of victims. Begich supports taking military sexual assault prosecution out of the chain of command, condemned the failed response of the Alaska National Guard to sexual assaults and has supported legislation to enhance the ability to initiate investigations into reports of sexual assault and misconduct in the National Guard.

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: 10/29/2014

ANCHORAGE —  Alaskans are outraged at the actions of an Outside group funded by a Dan Sullivan supporter and known associate of the Koch brothers, John Bryan. Letters containing information Alaskans consider to very personal have blanketed Alaska disclosing the name, home address and voting history of neighbors and strangers. The letters include a threat to shame voters by sending a notification to friend and neighbors if letter recipients don’t vote.

“Dan Sullivan, his supporters and the Koch brothers are proving they don’t care about the privacy of Alaskans when it comes to their attempt to buy Alaska’s Senate seat. As a born and raised Alaskan, Mark Begich respects and has fought to protect the privacy of Alaskans, these letters are a shameful breach of that privacy and a misguided attempt to support Dan Sullivan by Outside billionaires,” said Susanne Fleek-Green, campaign manager for Alaskans for Begich.

What Alaskans are saying about the shameful efforts of one of Dan Sullivan’s Outside donors:

The ABC News Alaska affiliate station aired the following story featuring an interview with Senator Begich:

CLICK THE PHOTO TO VIEW THE STORY

From the Fairbanks Daily News-Miner: Letters Exposing Neighbors’ Voting Records Anger Alaskans

“I was so mad, I could’ve spit.” — “If they’re going this far, they could go farther.”

From the Alaska Dispatch News: Alaska Voters Upset About Public-Shaming Mailers, But Experts Say They Work

“This is like a violation of privacy. It’s not anybody’s business whether or not I voted.”

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“When we ask which candidate knows Alaska best and is most capable of advocating for our state, our answer is Sen. Mark Begich.” 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: 10/29/2014

ANCHORAGE —  U.S. Senator Mark Begich earned the endorsement of the Juneau Empire, Southeast Alaska’s largest newspaper. The Juneau Empire is based in Alaska’s capital city and publishes news from around the state.

The paper recognized Mark Begich’s record of supporting Alaska’s veterans, using his clout on the Appropriations Committee to fund Alaska projects, and his work fighting the EPA to move forward resource development projects like Kensington mine.

The paper also chided Dan Sullivan for his refusal to address Alaska issues, his reliance on talking points and his clear cut association with the Koch brothers:

“Earlier this year, an approachable, likable and conversational candidate talked to the Empire in person. Lately, we’ve seen a candidate using GOP talking points and buzzwords with generic and scripted dialogue. Honestly, we liked Sullivan better before the Koch brothers started backing him before the Republican primary. That’s when we noticed Sullivan change.” 

During this campaign cycle, the Juneau Empire has endorsed both Republican and Democratic candidates for elected offices around the state, illustrating what Alaskans already know, voters support people, not political parties in Alaska.

Highlights from the Juneau Empire endorsement:

“Judging on past records and their plan moving forward, Alaskans should send Begich back to Washington D.C. for another term. He knows Alaska best and since 2009 has done his part to ensure others in the nation’s capital got to know it better, too.”

“For those who think Begich hasn’t done enough for resource development, he pushed the Environmental Protection Agency to allow the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to permit Kensington Mine. As for the Greens Creek Mine, Begich helped secure permits for its facility expansion, going so far as to hold up the confirmation of USDA undersecretary nominee Robert Bonnie until the two had a chance to discuss Greens Creek and the Roadless Rule.”

“When we ask which candidate knows Alaska best and is most capable of advocating for our state, our answer is Sen. Mark Begich.” 

“Alaska needs a strong advocate regardless of who is president, and we’ve had that for six years with Mark Begich. If we send Begich back to Washington, we’ll get the same results for another six: funding for rural communities, a proven advocate for veteran and Native rights and a straight-shooter who will make sure Alaska gets everything it deserves.”

You can read the full endorsement here.

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Struggling To Motivate Alaskans, Sullivan Forced To Call For Help From Outsiders

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: 10/28/2014

ANCHORAGE — In the closing days of the election, Dan Sullivan has been forced to recruit Outside reinforcements to stump on his behalf. According to the Washington Post, Sullivan will be hosting non-Alaskans, Mitt Romney and Ted Cruz, at events over the weekend in an attempt to drum up support for his bid for Alaska’s U.S. Senate seat.

“Throughout his bid for U.S. Senate, Dan Sullivan has struggled to connect with Alaskans because he has skipped debates, dodged opportunities to meet one-on-one with Alaskans, and held very few public events. Dan Sullivan has relied heavily on his supporters in the Lower 48, like the Koch brothers and Karl Rove, to attack Mark Begich and prop up his campaign. Now, as Election Day draws closer, Dan Sullivan is forced to rely on Outside surrogates to headline his events because he wants to represent their interests, not Alaska’s,” said Susanne Fleek-Green, campaign manager for Alaskans for Begich.

During the final week of the campaign, Mark Begich remains focused on meeting with Alaskans and talking to them about his work in the U.S. Senate and his goals for a second term. Mark Begich’s mom, Pegge, and his wife, Deborah, will also be traveling around the state, attending events and talking one-on-one with Alaskans.

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Sullivan Silent on Right to Work Legislation, Oil Speculation

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: 10/28/2014

ANCHORAGE —  Senator Mark Begich participated in a candidate forum at the Fairbanks Chamber of Commerce where he pointed to his record of developing Alaska’s resources and opening up the Arctic to the first oil and gas drilling it has seen in decades.

Meanwhile, Dan Sullivan decided to stick to his tired script of washed up “talking points.” Sullivan offered no substance on Alaska issues while ducking and dodging questions on Right to Work legislation, refusing to reveal his support for the Pebble Mine and failing to denounce the Citizen’s United Supreme Court decision and permanently keep dark money out of elections.

“As made clear by the Fairbanks Daily News-Miner’s endorsement, Mark Begich’s record stands on its own when it comes to delivering for Fairbanks: keeping the F-16s at Eielson, working to secure two new squadrons of F-35s in Alaska and creating thousands of jobs across the state. Meanwhile, Dan Sullivan’s non-existent record was clear as he grasped at straws and ducked from his already blatant support for harmful Right to Work legislation and the millions he has received from the Koch brothers,” said Max Croes, Communications Director for Alaskans for Begich.

Sullivan has said that he supports Right to Work policies and is backed by the Koch Brothers funded National Federation of Independent Businesses, who is in favor of it.

Sullivan is backed by Outside billionaires and millionaires like the Koch brothers, New York hedge-fund manager Paul Singer, Donald Trump, Texas billionaire and NFL franchise owner Bob McNair, and his wealthy Ohio based parents who have dumped nearly $700,000 into the race.

Since taking office in 2009, Mark Begich has consistently fought for Fairbanks and Interior Alaska. Begich fought to keep the F-16s at Eielson, worked to get two new squadrons of F-35s, fought the EPA over the Tanana River bridge and battled to keep the missile silos at Fort Greely.

Begich also received the endorsement of the Fairbanks Daily News-Miner for reelection to the U.S. Senate. According to Alaska journalists this is the News-Miner’s first endorsement of a Democrat for U.S. Senate since Senator E.L. Bob Bartlett (U.S. Senator for Alaska 1959 – 1968).

Begich’s record of delivering for Fairbanks:

Washington Post: Begich Fought To Keep Military Bases Funded And F-16 Fighter Jets In Alaska. Reported the Washington Post in January 2014, “He fights to keep military bases funded and F-16 jets housed in his state, and he supports climate-change legislation, knowing that Alaska is ground zero for its effects.” [Washington Post1/21/14]

Begich Successfully Pressed Regulators To Approve Colville River Bridge To Allow ConocoPhillips To Move Forward On NPR-A Drilling. Reported Hearst in February 2014, “Begich has cast himself as a ‘different Democrat’ from day one — departing from the national party on gun control as well as energy policy. Begich pressed regulators to allow ConocoPhillips to build a bridge over Alaska’s Colville River, despite environmental objections, so the company could access its drilling lease in the National Petroleum Reserve-Alaska. That milestone in late 2011 paved the way for production expected to start late next year.” [Hearst, 2/13/14]

Begich Placed Hold On Promotion Of Air Force General To Demand Answers On Proposal To Move F-16 Squadron From Eielson. Reported the Fairbanks News-Miner in April 2012, “Frustrated by a lack of answers about the proposed move of an Eielson Air Force base squadron, Sen. Mark Begich has stalled the promotion of an Air Force lieutenant general until he gets more information. The Alaska Democrat notified Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta and Senate leaders of the move on Thursday. He’s asked that the Senate Armed Services Committee halt the nomination process for Lt. Gen. Herbert J. Carlisle, who is being considered for promotion to four-star general and as Commander of Pacific Air Forces.” [Fairbanks News-Miner4/20/12]

Begich, Murkowski & Young Wrote To Air Force Leadership To Press For F-35 Squadron At Eielson. Reported the Associated Press in October 2013, “Alaska’s congressional delegation is lobbying Air Force leaders to base F-35 Joint Strike Fighters at Eielson Air Force Base in Fairbanks. U.S. Sens. Mark Begich and Lisa Murkowski, along with Rep. Don Young, sent a letter to Acting Secretary of the Air Force Eric Fanning and Air Force Chief of Staff Mark Walsh touting the value and strategic location of Eielson. Once destined for part-time status, the Air Force earlier this month decided to keep an F-16 squadron at Eielson and not move it to an Anchorage base. The delegation says in a release that the Air Force plans to release an initial candidate base for the F-35s in late November and a preferred list by February.” [Associated Press, 10/16/13]

Air Force Locating 48 F-35 Fighter Jets At Eielson Would Bring About 3,000 Military And Civilians Jobs To The North Pole Area.“Earlier this month the Air Force announced that Eielson Air Force Base is the ‘preferred alternative’ to host two squadrons of F-35 aircraft, the Air Force’s newest fighter jet. Such a move would bring 48 aircraft and about 3,000 military and civilian jobs to the North Pole area. The planes wouldn’t arrive until at least 2019. The Air Force doesn’t plan to officially pick the next F-35 base until fall of 2015, although the service has confirmed that no other bases besides Eielson are being studied.” [Fairbanks News-Miner8/22/14]

Recovery Act Provided $10 Million To Fairbanks North Star Borough School Board To Help Students Prepare For College And Careers.The Juneau Empire reported, “The Fairbanks North Star Borough School Board plans to formally accept $10 million in federal stimulus moneyTuesday, a move that will ad The Fairbanks North Star Borough School Board plans to formally accept $10 million in federal stimulus moneyTuesday, a move that will add more than a dozen new jobs while helping the district start programs aimed at helping students prepare for college and careers.d more than a dozen new jobs while helping the district start programs aimed at helping students prepare for college and careers. Since the spring, district officials have met with teachers, parents and members of the community to decide how to spend the funds. Following a work session in June, the district approved projects based on three factors: grant requirements, how the project would benefit students and sustainability after the three-year grants run out.” [Juneau Empire10/20/09]

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: 10/28/2014

ANCHORAGE — In preparation for this week’s debates, Alaskans for Begich is releasing a pre-debate memo including the questions Dan Sullivan will avoid at all cost during this week’s three debates.

Tuesday: Fairbanks Chamber of Commerce (Not available)
Wednesday: KTUU Channel 2 (TV & Online)
Thursday: Alaska Public Radio Network (Online)

Dan Sullivan already skipped one debate this week, held yesterday at the Anchorage Chamber of Commerce. At the Alaska Federation of Natives forum last week KTOO said this about Dan Sullivan, ” For Sullivan, things got off to a rocky start during the lightning round, which required yes or no answers.”

___________________________

From: Alaskans for Begich, Campaign Manager Susanne Fleek-Green
To: Concerned Parties
Date: 10/28/2014
Subject: Questions Dan Sullivan Will Be Avoiding During Debates

1. Where do you stand on the PATRIOT Act?

Dan Sullivan is quick to highlight his time as a political appointee working for National Security Advisor Condoleezza Rice. However, Alaskans remember Rice, in partnership with Karl Rove, as engineers of the PATRIOT Act and innovators of modern practices to spy on millions of American citizens. Mark Begich has repeatedly voted against the PATRIOT Act and believes Alaskans are entitled to their privacy. Sullivan has refused to take a position on the PATRIOT Act despite his role working for Rice.

2. How much support have you received from the Koch brothers?

The most recent campaign filing from Dan Sullivan included $40,000 in donations from the billionaire Koch brothers and members of the Koch family used to help pay off a $400,000 campaign debt. The donations from the Kochs come after Sullivan has refused to speak out about their decision to close the Flint Hills refinery in Fairbanks, kill 80 Alaska jobs and raise taxes on Alaskans. Dan Sullivan still won’t come clean about exactly how much support he has received from the Koch brothers or their affiliates.

3. Where did you file your income taxes in 2007 and 2008?

The State of Maryland Department of Assessments and Taxation released its findings on the residence tax credit eligibility of U.S. Senate candidate Dan Sullivan for his million dollar home in the Washington, D.C. suburb of Bethesda. In Dan Sullivan’s official Senate candidate filling, he identified himself as a 17-year continuous resident of the State of Alaska. A declaration that conflicts with the State of Maryland’s assessment of residency between 2006 and 2008. Dan Sullivan still will not disclose where he filed his federal income taxes in 2007 and 2008.

4. Who are you supporting in the Alaska gubernatorial race?

Dan Sullivan’s failed record as attorney general and Department of Natural Resources Commissioner came under Governors Palin and Parnell. Dan Sullivan is desperate to create political distance from his former boss, Governor Sean Parnell.

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Letters Containing Personal Information and Voting History Arriving At Homes Statewide

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: 10/28/2014

ANCHORAGE —  Another Koch brothers affiliated group is supporting Dan Sullivan, this time by violating Alaskans’ privacy by sending letters with the home address and voting habits of neighbors and strangers to the homes of Alaskans. The letters are being attributed to Oregonian multimillionaire John Bryan who is “close to Charles and David Koch.”

KTUU recently aired a story outlining the outrage expressed by Alaskans who have received such letters.

“Outside supporters of Dan Sullivan are trying to buy this election to represent their interests, not Alaska’s. Dan Sullivan is always quick to brag about being a State Department appointee under Condoleezza Rice, the architect of the modern U.S. surveillance state, and it’s clear these violations of privacy are his true beliefs. Alaskans can all agree there needs to be a fundamental respect for each other’s privacy. Mark Begich believes all Alaskans are entitled to their right to privacy and these letters are a violation and poorly informed scare tactic,” said Max Croes, Communications Director for Alaskans for Begich.

Dan Sullivan’s financial support is mainly funded by Outside interests. The most recent Federal Elections Commission filing from Dan Sullivan’s campaign included $40,000 in donations from the Koch brothers.

The letters are linked to Opportunity Alliance PAC, another Outside group intent on buying Alaska’s Senate seat for Dan Sullivan.

Opportunity Alliance PAC Raised $250,020. [Pre-General report, FEC, filed 10/13/14]

  • May 27, 2014: John Bryan Gave $200,000 To Opportunity Alliance. [FEC, accessed 10/27/14]
  • September 26, 2014: Gaye Lovett Kelsey Gave $50,000 To Opportunity Alliance. [FEC, accessed 10/27/14]

John Bryan Has Been “Close To David And Charles Koch” And Is A Major Contributor To Conservative Causes.“Bryan, one of the founders of a chemical company spun off from Georgia-Pacific, is a major contributor to conservative causes and has funded a foundation aimed at spurring charter schools and educational choice. […] Bryan, who is a retired executive and board member of Georgia Gulf living in Lake Oswego, has been close to David and Charles Koch, the brothers who own Georgia-Pacific and are prominent supporter of the Tea Party movement and a variety of other conservative causes.” [The Oregonian, 6/24/13]

Koch Brothers Finally Disclosed Large Contributions To Their Political Empire, Including From Retired Oregon Oilman John Bryan, Who Also Attended Koch Seminars. “Charles and David Koch have finally disclosed at least a small portion of the large contributions given to their political empire. According to a report filed with the Federal Election Commission on Wednesday, each of the billionaire brothers gave $2 million to Freedom Partners Action Fund, a super PAC founded to influence the 2014 elections. […] A handful of other super wealthy donors, also known to have attended Koch seminars, gave $500,000 or more to the super PAC. They are retired Oregon oilman John Bryan, Boston private equity investor John Childs, New York investor Ravenel Curry, Virginia homebuilder Richard Gilliam, Missouri roofing maker David Humphreys and Arkansas poultry processor Ronald Cameron.” [Huffington Post, 10/15/14]

  • John Bryan Gave $575,000 To Freedom Partners. “In addition, Freedom Partners received $575,000 from Lake Oswego resident John D. Bryan, one of the founders of a chemical company spun off from Georgia-Pacific.  That’s the former Portland wood products company, now headquartered in Atlanta and owned by Koch Industries.” [The Oregonian,10/15/14]
  • 2011: John Bryan Was A Featured Speaker At Koch Retreat. “John Bryan, a retired oil tycoon, was a featured speaker at the 2011 Koch retreat in Palm Springs, Calif.” [Public Integrity, 5/19/14]

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Sullivan relies on DC connections instead of Anchorage businesses

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: 10/27/2014

ANCHORAGE — Senator Mark Begich and Libertarian Mark Fish debated issues important to Alaska at the Anchorage Chamber of Commerce today. Despite claiming to be a pro-business candidate, U.S. Senate candidate Dan Sullivan refused to attend the event and would not disclose where he was instead.

Sullivan has refused to attend multiple forums and debates across Alaska and has requested on occasion for the forums not to be broadcast or livestreamed. Sullivan continues to rely on national talking points the Alaska Dispatch News has called “broad and vague.”

“Dan Sullivan won’t tell Alaskans where he was today instead of accepting a months old invitation from the Anchorage Chamber of Commerce. Sullivan is hiding behind shadowy Outside groups like the Koch brothers and Sullivan’s wealthy Ohio family who, like Sullivan, refuse to be accountable to Alaskans. Dan Sullivan touted his endorsement from the partisan anti-Alaska U.S. Chamber of Commerce, but refuses to attend the Anchorage Chamber of Commerce because he’s running to represent Outside interests,” said Max Croes, Communications Director for Alaskans for Begich.

Alaskans are still waiting to hear from Dan Sullivan on a host of issues including the Voting Rights Act, the Ryan Plan, the Violence Against Women (VAWA) exception for Alaska, permanent authorization of the Indian Health Service, how he would protect postal service in Alaska and has waffled on whether he supports an increase in the state minimum wage.

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