Alaska’s congressional delegation, from left to right, Sen. Dan Sullivan, Sen. Lisa Murkowski, Rep. Don Young, all Republicans. Delegates responded to criticisms of President Trump made by former Secretary of Defense Gen. James Mattis. (Michael Penn | Juneau Empire File)

Alaska’s congressional delegation, from left to right, Sen. Dan Sullivan, Sen. Lisa Murkowski, Rep. Don Young, all Republicans. Delegates responded to criticisms of President Trump made by former Secretary of Defense Gen. James Mattis. (Michael Penn | Juneau Empire File)

Alaska’s congressional delegation responds to Trump criticisms, protests

Delegates issued statesment to the Empire

All three members of Alaska’s Congressional Delegation responded to criticisms of President Trump made recently by former Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis.

The first to do so was Republican Sen. Lisa Murkowski who called Mattis’ comments, “true, and honest and necessary and overdue.”

In a statement Wednesday, Mattis said President Trump“is the first president in my lifetime who does not try to unite the American people — does not even pretend to try. Instead he tries to divide us. We are witnessing the consequences of three years of this deliberate effort.”

Murkowski told reporters in Washington, D.C., she was “struggling” with supporting President Trump, according to the Associated Press. While Murkowski has a history of criticizing the president, Alaska’s other two delegates, Rep. Don Young and Sen. Dan Sullivan, both Republicans, have been more supportive.

In a statement, Young said:

“I support our President and want him to be successful in unifying our nation and healing our wounds. In America’s history, we have had much to overcome to achieve racial equality, and we have more work to do. In my lifetime, I have seen great leaders like Dr. Martin Luther King Jr and my colleague Congressman John Lewis do brave work to help secure equal protection under the law that our Constitution promises. It is our work to continue, both in Alaska and across the country.

“I am very proud of Alaskans who peacefully demonstrated over the suffocation of George Floyd. They respectfully exercised their First Amendment right and had their voices heard. I think this peaceful action is the best way to honor George Floyd’s memory and bring people together to make our country a better place for everyone. We can and must do better as a nation, and I’m very hopeful we will.”

[Murkowski says she’s struggling with supporting Trump]

Sullivan also provided a statement to the Empire:

“I have deep respect for Jim Mattis and his service to our nation. I agree with all calls for unity at this time, and have been emphasizing the same. While I would urge the president to try to strike a unifying tone and message during these challenging times, the blame game and finger pointing on issues of race in America are not constructive, particularly now. As my former boss Condoleezza Rice wrote in a very powerful op-ed in today’s Washington Post, ‘If we are to make progress, let us vow to check the language of recrimination at the door.’ Now is the time when we need to listen to each other, learn, and then take appropriate action together.”

In an email, Sullivan spokesperson Mike Anderson said the senator doesn’t favor deploying active duty troops in response to protests, unless a governor has requested them.

• Contact reporter Peter Segall at psegall@juneauempire.com. Follow him on Twitter at @SegallJnoEmpire.

More in News

A signal flare burns bright enough to light up the day lit shores of the Sacramento Delta during a flare training exercise held at Coast Guard Station Rio Vista, Friday, April 6, 2012. (Courtesy Photo | Petty Officer 2nd Class Levi Read)
Coast Guard reminds boaters not to use flares as fireworks

It’s punishable by a fine and prison time.

This July 2019 photo provided by Peter Westley shows the carcass of a chum salmon along the shore of the Koyukuk River near Huslia, Alaska, July 2019 was the hottest month ever recorded in the state. Global warming looks like it will be a far bigger problem for the world’s fish species than scientists first thought, since a study led by Dr. Flemming Dahlke released on Thursday, July 2, 2020 shows that when fish are spawning or are embryos they are far more vulnerable to hotter water. (Peter Westley | University of Alaska Fairbanks)
Fish more vulnerable to warming water than first thought

Study shows that when fish are spawning or are embryos they are more vulnerable to hotter water.

Police calls for Friday, July 3, 2020

This report contains public information available to the Empire from law enforcement… Continue reading

Police calls for Thursday, July 2, 2020

This report contains public information available to the Empire from law enforcement… Continue reading

Elizabeth Hope holds up the Chilkat Protector Mask at a ceremony. (Courtesy Photo | Sydney Akagi Photography for Lily Hope)
Weaver donates ‘Chilkat Protector Mask’

It will enter Sealaska Heritage Institute’s permanent collection.

The former Walmart building, shown in this July 1 photo, located in the Lemon Creek area is for sale at a price about $2.3 million below its assessed value. (Peter Segall | Juneau Empire)
Former Walmart building for sale at reduced price

The former Walmart Inc. store that has been vacant since 2016 is… Continue reading

An officer from the Juneau Police Department investigate an officer involved shooting off Cinema Drive on Dec. 29,2019. (Michael S. Lockett | Juneau Empire File)
Parents of man killed by JPD to sue department

The officer was cleared by the state, but not everyone finds that decision valid.

Police calls for Wednesday, June 31, 2020

This report contains public information available to the Empire from law enforcement… Continue reading

Police calls for Tuesday June 30, 2020

This report contains public information available to the Empire from law enforcement… Continue reading

Most Read