Why Participate in Local Party Elections?

January 30, 2010

If you want conservative leadership, you have to vote for it – both on election day and the other 364.25 days as well.

More than that, you influence the election even before Election Day. If you are silent and don’t make your presence known, then a conservative candidate considering running for a contested race (such as a higher party office position) may not even run because they don’t think they have any significant support!

Most people don’t realize it, but your silence itself is a vote. If you let folks know that you will be showing up on voting day, then good candidates will be inspired to run. When it comes right down to it, it’s just that simple.

All politics is local. It’s been said by countless political figures, from Tip O’Neill to Pat Robertson. Every political leader starts in a local neighborhood. Every leader makes his way up through the ranks by learning “how the process works.”

How does the process work in your community? Are political leaders held accountable? Or are they instead being taught through practical experience that the Constitution is a historic concept that they ought to “look past” because of our “pressing modern needs and emergencies”? The simple truth is we are training up future political leaders every day. Some of our local men and women will take positions of community leadership. Some will go on to higher levels of leadership. What lessons will they take with them when they do? If they learn their lessons from an apathetic and disengaged community, we will have failed them. But there is an even more practical political truism:

“For better and for worse, we tend to get the leaders we deserve.”

Here in Alaska the political process is specifically designed to be driven by the grassroots. The Republican Party officially calls itself “Alaska’s leading grassroots organization,” and it has every right to do so. The very structure of the party is such that the grassroots are the gatekeepers; they hold all the keys.  The board of governors of the Alaska Republican Party (“The Alaska State Central Committee”) is elected right in your backyard, and in backyards all across the state.  The Chairman of the Party, and all of the statewide party officers are not elected in a backroom where only the wealthy or politically connected are invited to attend. Every statewide officer is elected by delegates, every one of which is chosen right in your backyard and in other backyards. The requirements to vote in party elections are minimal:

1) Show up to the convention (some are only an hour long)
2) Register as a voter and pay the convention fee

You don’t have to have ever registered to vote before in your life. You can register to vote for your very first time on the morning of the convention when you walk in the door. They’ll even have a blank voter registration form for you. And if you register as a Republican voter, there’s nothing they can do to keep you out or keep you from voting in the Republican Party Elections. It’s that easy!

The moment Alaskans take personal responsibility for the direction of their government is the moment things will change. It’s time.


What Does it Mean to be a Conservative?

January 29, 2010

We are not united today as equally indistinct cogs in a political machine. We will not ask one another to abandon principles and convictions for sake of a supposed “common good”. Each of us work together on some issues and have the freedom to disagree on other issues. We do not assume or require agreement when it comes to specific policy proposals or the election of particular candidates, which are decisions best left to each individual either to support or not as seems prudent to them.

That being said, we do not take either the name Conservative or Patriot without sound reason. We are proud in saying that Conservative is not a vague or fuzzy concept, despite the attempts of some to make it so.  It is not an amorphous idea meant to cast a net wide enough to include nearly everyone, despite fundamental disagreements on the proper role of government in these United States. In the words of Frederick Douglass:

“What, then, is the Constitution? I will tell you. It is no vague, indefinite, floating, unsubstantial, ideal something, colored according to any man’s fancy, now a weasel, now a whale, and now nothing. . . . The American Constitution is a written instrument full and complete in itself. No Court in America, no Congress, no President, can add a single word thereto, or take a single word therefrom. It is a great national enactment done by the people, and can only be altered, amended, or added to by the people.”—Frederick Douglass, Glasgow, Scotland, March 26, 1860

As our Constitution is a tangible document, attesting to the legitimate actions of both common citizens and their fellow citizens temporarily serving as representatives in the halls of government, it is something we can and will defend. So, too, we offer the following tangible statement of core principles we hold in common. As these reflect principles and values that are fundamental to our way of life, we will defend these, both at the ballot box and in our daily lives.

Ten Principles of Conservatism
Being Conservative is a way of understanding life, society, and governance:

1.   Conservatives believe in the written Rule of Law as expressed in the Constitution and the Bill of Rights by the founding fathers and reject the idea of a living Constitution.

2.   Conservatives believe that government is best which governs least.

3.   Conservatives believe in the individual right to life, liberty, and property.

4.   Conservatives believe in the sanctity of the individual from conception, that families are the basic units of society, and that anti-family policies should be ended.

5.   Conservatives believe our freedoms and rights are God-given natural rights, not given by the government.

6.   Conservatives have compassion for the poor and oppose policies, such as socialism, that cause or extend poverty.

7.   Conservatives believe in free and fair trade of goods and services.

8.   Conservatives believe in a strong military and have a great respect for those who have put their lives in peril to protect others.

9.   Conservatives believe in public policy that encourages advancement based solely on ability and achievement.

10.  Conservatives believe English should be the common language for the United States.

Source: Thanks to Alaska Conservative Patriots Group for publishing these as core principles that both their members and the members of other groups may rally around.

Which District Do I live in?

January 28, 2010

The State of Alaska is divided into 40 Districts, one for each member in the Alaska State House of Representatives.

The area of each district is shown on the Election Districts Webpage.

You may also call the Elections Office in your region to verify the district and precinct you are registered to vote in. If you are not registered to vote and you call, they can look up your district and precinct if you give them your current address.

Your District and Precinct are important information.
Write it down so you don’t forget!

Alaska Division of Elections Regional Offices
Southeast Alaska Elections Office (Districts 1-5 and 33-36)
Toll-Free (866) 948-8683

Southcentral Alaska Elections Office (Districts 13-32)
Toll-Free (866) 958-8683

Matanuska-Susitna Elections Office (Mat-Su Valley Districts)
Phone (907) 373-8952

Central Alaska Elections Office (Districts 6-12)
Toll-Free (866) 959-8683

Northern and Western Alaska Elections Office (Districts 37-40)
Toll-Free (866) 953-8683