In this photo taken Oct. 17, Republican U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski listens during a meet-and-greet at her campaign headquarters in Juneau.

In this photo taken Oct. 17, Republican U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski listens during a meet-and-greet at her campaign headquarters in Juneau.

Murkowski faces several rivals in debate on Arctic issues

JUNEAU — Voters weighing who they will support for president should consider issues such as energy development and opportunities for developing Alaska’s resources, U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski said in a debate Wednesday.

The Alaska Republican said Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton has espoused a philosophy that will hold back Alaska, the Arctic and the country.

Murkowski did not remark on her party’s nominee, Donald Trump, except to repeat that she cannot support him or Clinton.

The debate, focused mainly on Arctic issues and broadcast online, was held in Barrow, the northernmost U.S. city, at the edge of the Chukchi Sea. Residents of the largely Inupiat city recently voted to change Barrow’s name to Utqiagvik (oot-GHAR-vik).

The debate featured three of Murkowski’s rivals — Democrat Ray Metcalfe and independents Margaret Stock and Breck Craig. Libertarian Joe Miller and independent Ted Gianoutsos did not participate.

Stock, who has won backing from factions of the state Democratic party, has struggled to break through the crowded field. She said she doesn’t think Clinton would be a “disaster” for Alaska or the Arctic.

President Barack Obama, a Democrat, has been supportive of Alaska Native interests and concerns, Stock said.

Craig, who is supporting Clinton despite some “serious reservations,” said Trump would probably have little interest in the Arctic unless he could build a hotel there.

Stock sought to paint Murkowski as a career politician and part of an ineffective Congress. Stock and Metcalfe each said they would serve just two terms if elected.

Murkowski, who has served in the Senate since 2002, said some would argue that building up seniority is important for a state that has only a three-person congressional delegation. During this campaign, Murkowski has touted her seniority as an asset.

The candidates talked about the need for greater investments in the Arctic and helping to protect a subsistence way of life and communities in rural Alaska.

It was the third of four debates or forums in which Murkowski will participate. The last one, a public media debate, is scheduled for Nov. 3.

More in News

A king salmon on a line in Southeast Alaska gets pulled toward the net. The 2020 SeaBank report calls industrial logging and climate change “double jeopardy for salmon.” 
(Courtesy Photo / Bjorn Dihle)
SalmonState: ‘Alaska’s untold secret’ — The dividends paid by Southeast Alaska’s ‘Seabank’

By Mary Catharine Martin Wild salmon. Clean water. Clean air. Carbon storage.… Continue reading

This undated electron microscope image made available by the U.S. National Institutes of Health in February 2020 shows the Novel Coronavirus SARS-CoV-2, yellow, emerging from the surface of cells, blue/pink, cultured in the lab. Also known as 2019-nCoV, the virus causes COVID-19. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP, NIAID-RML
COVID at a Glance for Wednesday, Jan. 19, 2022

Numbers come from reports from the City and Borough of Juneau Emergency… Continue reading

This photo shows the Alaska State Capitol. A commission tasked with reviewing legislative pay on Tuesday voted to raise the annual salary for Alaska lawmakers but to restrict the daily allowance lawmakers can receive. The changes will go forward unless the Legislature expressly rejects them. (Peter Segall / Juneau Empire file)
State lawmakers face proposed salary hike, allowance limits

A commission tasked with reviewing legislative pay on Tuesday voted to raise… Continue reading

It's a police car until you look closely and see the details don't quite match. (Juneau Empire File / Michael Penn)
Police calls for Thursday, Jan. 20, 2022

This report contains public information from law enforcement and public safety agencies.

Goldbelt Transportation and Allen Marine Tours will contract with the Alaska Department of Transportation and Public Facilities to provide ferry service through the Southeast for the remainder of the winter, according to a news release. (Courtesy photo / Goldbelt Transportation)
Goldbelt, Allen Marine pick up winter ferry contracts

Contracts were signed this January for several winter runs to Southeast communities.

Donated blood is prepared for storage and eventual transport at the Blood Bank of Alaska's Juneau location. There is a statewide shortage of donated blood. (Ben Hohenstatt / Juneau Empire)
‘National blood crisis’ presents challenges in Alaska

Donation centers contend with COVID, weather and other disruptions as they work to stock hospitals.

Most Read