Letter: Don’t forget what Dunleavy did

By Doug Pope
Anchorage Daily News | October 20, 2022

I hope no voters develop amnesia this election about how Gov. Mike Dunleavy has torn down and divided this state. Remember the “Governor of One Idea?” Irresponsibly gutting the state budget for some right-wing notions he’s never explained? It’s only been three years since he wrung $70 million out of the University of Alaska budget, which led to campuses across the state eliminating entire programs, and diminishing life in the communities they served.

My wife and I were in Fairbanks that summer on the Riverboat Discovery for an evening of civic celebration. I’d grown up in Fairbanks and knew many on board. While catching up, I learned that many old friends and family, Republicans nearly all, had signed petitions to recall Gov. Dunleavy. The reason was simple. They all understood the importance of the University of Alaska to Fairbanks, and couldn’t understand why he had unleashed a frontal attack on it.

The governor was on board during this civic celebration, shaking hands and trying to take credit for something he’d had no part in, while his entourage trailed along behind him on the narrow gangway. He seemed clueless that most of the people he was gladhanding had signed the recall petition. I think it pretty clear that the pandemic was the only thing that saved the governor then from being removed from office. Let’s hope voters now remember why.