Alaska Politics Blog

This is the place to talk about Alaska politics, state, local, national. Public life in the Last Frontier has rarely been more interesting -- a full slate of federal and state elections, the influence of former Gov. Sarah Palin, the usual hardball Alaska politics. Come here for news, tidbits and information, and join the discussion. We encourage lively debate, but please keep it civil and stay on point. Don't use profanity, make crude comments or attack other posters. Posts that violate the Terms of Use will be deleted. Repeat offenders will lose their ability to post comments.

New Senate organization announced - 11/7/2012 12:48 pm

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Anchorage city clerk resigns (UPDATED) - 5/23/2012 10:51 am

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For one lawmaker: Good news - 4/27/2012 12:20 pm

Anticipation in the Capitol - 4/26/2012 11:38 am

Election Commission finds 1/2 of precincts ran out of ballots; recommends no investigation - 4/25/2012 5:08 pm

Tea Party Express starts Joe Miller ads (Updated)

From Sean Cockerham in Anchorage --

The Tea Party Express is starting what it says will be $100,000 in radio ads for Joe Miller, saying it expects to "spend a sizeable amount that could approach $1 million" in total support for Miller's primary run against Sen. Lisa Murkowski.

The Tea Party Express has bashed Murkowski but didn't mention her by name in the first radio ad. It touts Miller's background, including his West Point degree and bronze star from the first Gulf War, and says the country is in crisis with deficits, bailouts, government run health care and more.

(Update -- As a commenter points out, the Tea Party Express ad says Miller was a "federal judge." Miller was a federal magistrate in Fairbanks. In the federal system magistrates are called "U.S. magistrate judge." It is different from federal district court and appeals court judges, who are nominated by the president and confirmed by the Senate.

Here's how the Federal Magistrate Judges Association describes it:

A United States Magistrate Judge is a federal trial judge appointed to serve in a United States district court for a term of eight years. He or she is appointed by the life-tenured federal judges of a district court, District Judges, who supervise the activities of the Magistrate Judges by assigning civil cases for jury or non-jury trial upon consent of the parties and for pre-trial matters. Similarly criminal cases are assigned to Magistrate Judges on the consent of the parties, except for the trial of felony cases.

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