Yesterday a seemingly routine day at the legislature was upended by Antifa activist Ivan Hodes who stirred things up by making his presence felt personally in the capitol, asking for the removal of Rep. David Eastman from the House Judiciary Committee. Ivan even took his bold approaches a step further by entering into Rep. Eastman’s office to “congratulate” his staff on their “retirement” over an abrupt 2-week notice from the House Majority on Friday.
It seems as if navigating through what is actually happening at our Alaska state legislature is getting more difficult every day – one thing that has become crystal clear is that if you want to get your point across and have your voice heard, you have to make some noise!
2017: Rep. David Eastman Enters the Political Field
On April 14, 2017, an official complaint was filed alleging two Alaska state lawmakers running for reelection had violated campaign fundraising laws. This scorching accusation painted a worrisome image of the candidates’ behavior in regard to finance restrictions intended to keep elections fair and transparent. Rep Eastman’s official complaint also stated that Rep. Gabrielle LeDoux of East Anchorage threatened to withhold campaign cash from Rep. Lora Reinbold of Eagle River if the latter voted the wrong way on a measure while on the House floor. It remained to be seen at the time how this case will unfold, and whether or not Rep. Eastman’s allegations would prove true.
Exploring the depths of Alaska’s political arena at the time, one will come across many different PACs, including David Eastman’s Alaska Conservative Leadership PAC, LeDoux’s “Common Sense Conservatives PAC” aka “Gabby’s Tuesday PAC” and Seaton’s Sustain Alaska Fund PAC. While each of these organizations support their respective causes, Eastman filed a complaint against the first two and warned against a potential quick and easy way to hide campaign funds which consists of passing back and forth $1000 contributions. The total amount sent may be small, but the potential implications far outweigh the limited financial impact. Former Speaker Bryce Edgmon was also the recipient of a $1,000 of “Gabby’s Tuesday PAC” money.
The partnership between LeDoux and Seaton sent shockwaves through the state’s Republican party – they had just formed a coalition with the Democrats too. In response, LeDoux faced a contested Republican primary race in District 15 while Seaton chose to switch to a nonpartisan candidate running with the Democratic party in District 31.
Another complaint filed by Rep. David Eastman on Aug. 15, 2018 indicates more potential violations of Alaska’s Public Offices Commission rules relating to political contributions. Specifically, the complaint alleges that Reps. Gabrielle LeDoux and Paul Seaton made multiple donations totaling $5,000 between two political action committees and their respective campaigns in order to conceal the origin of those monies. If these accusations are found to be true, they could have violated both state and federal law regarding campaign contributions.
“These candidates may choose at any time to create additional PACs for this purpose,” … “The function of these transactions was to enable the movement of money from persons who could not, by law, contribute to Gabrielle LeDoux’s and Paul Seaton’s, respectively.”Rep. David Eastman, 2018
LeDoux dismissed the complaint as a distraction.
“I have no comment other than that I believe this complaint will ultimately be dismissed,” she said in an email. “I have asked and received advice from APOC staff virtually every step of the way with respect to this PAC. I believe this complaint was filed simply to divert my attention from my re-election campaign.”Rep. Gabrielle LeDoux, 2018
On June 11, 2021, Anchorage Superior Court heard an interesting cast of characters charged with voter misconduct: former Republican Rep. Gabrielle LeDoux, her former chief of staff Lisa Vaught Simpson and her son Caden Vaught. It seems their alleged attempts to influence the outcome of the 2020 Alaska election weren’t as clandestine as they thought – the trio have now been slapped with class C felony charges that carry a hearty five-year sentence upon conviction. Election officials apparently grew suspicious when a flurry of absentee ballot requests was sent in from an unlikely source.
We can only imagine what unique defense we’ll hear in court!
Gabrielle LeDoux is a swamp creature, former politician, former lawyer, and former member of the Republican Party of the Alaska House of Representatives living in Anchorage, Alaska.
With a background as an attorney in Kodiak, it’s no surprise that she hopes for leniency from the Democrat-controlled Alaskan courts. If you are as outraged as we are that swamp creatures like LeDoux occupy positions of power, then it’s time to take action!
We strongly encourage you to review the Formal Request for Immediate Impeachment of All Five Alaska Supreme Court Justices, as this is our best chance to combat swamp creatures like LeDoux and ensure justice and fairness is served in our community.
In the beginning of 2022, Speaker Stutes attempted to remove Representative David Eastman from his committees on the House Floor.
This action was not documented in any documents under “documents” tab in Basis or available for viewing through AKLEG TV, Gavel or teleconference with LIO.
According to Alaska Statute 24.60.130(g), a legislator can only be removed with the concurrence of two-thirds of the full membership of their house by roll call vote.
Sec. 24.60.120. State property and funds. [Repealed, § 42 ch 127 SLA 1992.] Article 3. Legislative Ethics Committee; Opinions; Complaints. Sec. 24.60.130. Select committee on legislative ethics. (g) Each legislative member serves for the duration of the legislature during which the member is appointed. Each public member serves for a term that commences on the date the member is ratified and ends on the first day of the third regular session that follows the ratification. A public member whose term has expired continues in office until a successor has been appointed and ratified or until the 30th calendar day of the first legislative session that follows the successor's appointment, whichever is earlier. A member of the committee may be removed from membership on the committee for failure to carry out the person's duties as a member of the committee. A legislator may be removed with the concurrence by roll call vote of two-thirds of the full membership of the house of the legislature to which the member belongs. A public member may be removed with the concurrence by roll call vote of two-thirds of the full membership of each house of the legislature.
The Uniparty’s decision to include the Ethics Committee in their report ended up costing them, as their comprehensive measures never came to fruition due to the high voting threshold required. Ethics is a select committee, chosen by statute and under the authority of the House of Representatives. In order for the report and its measures to be accepted, a two-thirds majority would have had to agree.
Unfortunately for the Uniparty, they were two votes shy of this requirement and thus unable to pass their report. This likely also explains why they avoided taking the matter to a vote on the house floor – as introducing Ethics meant that even if there was a majority agreement beforehand within the Committee of Committees, it wouldn’t qualify due to its much stricter requirement of two-thirds of the full membership of the house by roll call vote.
This attempt to remove Representative David Eastman without a 2/3 vote is considered UNETHICAL and against Alaska Statute.
Despite the fact that the members of the Committee on Committees signed the report knowing it violated state law, they chose to act anyway. It’s likely that their decision was driven by a strategic motive, since their role is limited to dealing with standing committees and they wanted to push forward a recommended course of action regardless of existing regulations. Though this came at a risk of breaking the law, in the end it enabled them to set a specific narrative. This report may have met its goal without being legitimate under Alaska state law.
Although Rep Cathy Tilton’s no vote in the 2022 Committee on Committees report was not enough to overturn the result, it can be seen as a strategic move by Rep. Tilton and Rep Shaw. She may have done it simply to cover her bases and save face, but Tilton and Shaw have been strategically playing the system since their campaign against Representative Eastman two years ago.
Representatives Cathy Tilton and Shaw actively sought to replace Rep. Eastman with Sumner as they door-knocked Rep. Eastman’s district in tandem with fellow Representatives Merrick and Rasmussen – both of whom voted to give Democrats control of the House for the last two years. Rep. Tilton and Shaw even publicly documented their alliances with Merrick and Rasmussen through videos that were used for their campaigns against Eastman. Was Rep. Tilton’s no vote part of a carefully spun play for control? Neither of them spoke against it during the meeting which is why it was less than two minutes long.
The justice system in America is facing an affront to democracy with the case of David Eastman.
After having been re-elected by his constituents in November 2022, Rep. Eastman was being sued to prevent him from taking office, even though the Alaska Division of Elections had already ruled that he was eligible to run. Many are appalled at this disregard for the will of voters and basic democratic rights.
However, it appears that justice prevailed in this situation too as David was declared eligible to serve, again confirming the representation powers and responsibilities of David Eastman and the rights of the 16,114 registered voters in Mat-Su House District 27. The importance of this decision cannot be overstated; it is yet another reminder of why it is so important to participate in elections and stand up for the democratic process.
It is quite appalling that despite an election, a ruling by the Alaska Division of Elections (APOC), AND a ruling by trial, there are still people working to undermine the trust in our electoral system. Folks like Ivan Hodes, who do not even live within House District 27 are actively trying to silence the voice of its citizens whose opinion was expressed fair and square through elections. This kind of behavior severely damages confidence in public institutions and further erodes democracy at large. Such attempts should not be taken lightly, and it is essential that those responsible are held accountable for their actions.
Sign Petition to Investigate disenfranchisers AKPIRG for foreign funding undermining of electoral process!
The so-called Alaska Public Interest Research Group (AKPIRG) has been pushing the boundaries of acceptable civic behavior for far too long. Rather than attending to properly representing Alaskan citizens, their actions have served only to disenfranchise the majority of voters and embolden nefarious elements instead.
Selectorate Theory, a game theoretic study of politics, has definitively shown that such brazen disregard for public interest tends to result in an upward escalation of corruption – a disturbing trend that must be reversed before it is too late.
Furthermore, these activities threaten to undermine the very pillars of democracy upon which our country was founded, our constitution. There is circumstantial evidence suggesting that this organization may be receiving foreign funding as part of a greater plot to subvert the public’s faith in our electoral system – a claim even more concerning given current geopolitical tensions and great power conflicts. It is time that we put an immediate stop to these radical activities before they spiral out of control!
It is time for Alaskan citizens to raise their voices and declare that enough is enough! AKPIRG’s actions have made it very clear that they are not acting in the public interest. Instead, they are pushing a corrupt agenda that disregards freedom of speech and the right to associate freely. We demand an investigation into this suspicious behavior and all associated funds to get to the bottom of their true motivations.
Regardless of the outcome of the investigation, Alaska State Representatives and State Senators must put an end to this undemocratic display once and for all. We will no longer stand by as our rights are discarded or compromised. It is time that we make our voices heard.
Failure to take action will allow them to steal away our essential freedoms and liberties which are written into our Constitution. These crass attacks must be repelled with loud, clear voices that demand a return to a political landscape which serves all people, not just those at the top. Signing this petition is an easy way for every single person to join together and make a unified front even during these times of division. It is time for us all to stand up for what is right and contact our legislators now before it is too late!
In the beginning of 2023, Rep. Cathy Tilton was elected Speaker of the House with a vote of 26 to 14.
- Representative McCormick, a Democrat from Bethel, voted against Tilton for Speaker yet is now part of the Majority caucus and was awarded with chairmanships over two committees.
- Representative Eastman, a conservative Republican from Wasilla who voted in favor of Tilton was then immediately sidelined by the bipartisan caucus and went from serving on five committees at the beginning of the last legislature to now serving as a member of only one committee.
- 21 Republicans were elected to the House, forming a bipartisan caucus with Democrats allowed them to sacrifice their most conservative member in order pursue an agenda that will chip away at Alaskans’ liberty.
Is this an anti-MAGA agenda?
What agenda are they sacrificing Eastman for this year? What is the reason Cathy Tilton would attack Eastman even when he is in the same party? Could it be because he’s hard on corruption?
Speaker Cathy Tilton appointed Craig Johnson, Delena Johnson, Josiah Patkotak and Calvin Schrage to the Committee on Committees.
Cathy Tilton said the majority is no longer interested in “purity tests.”, admitting that David Eastman votes true to conservative values. It ought to be illegal for the speaker to discriminate against a fellow Representative because of that person’s Christian faith, patriotic political philosophy, veteran status and/or their ginger hair. Get back to work Cathy Tilton, this isn’t to the purpose. Alaska is our home and we should be working hand in hand to make it better!
Rep. David Eastman is the litmus test for corruption in Alaska.
The speaker of the house ought to ensure equal opportunities for all representatives to be on the committees that are important to them or their districts. Rep. Cathy Tilton needs to stop trying to overturn the will of Rep. Eastman’s Constituents. Biased Representatives, like Rep. Tilton, are unfit for political office.
Backroom deals and binding caucuses violate Article 1, Section 2 of the Alaska State Constitution ( § 2. Source of Government. All political power is inherent in the people. All government originates with the people, is founded upon their will only, and is instituted solely for the good of the people as a whole. )
It is a sad reality that the binding caucus exists primarily to promote its own agenda, manipulating taxpayer money in order to continue their unfair control of budget decisions. By voting in unison on financial matters, they are able to sustain themselves and their objectives over time – even if it is to the detriment of Alaska as a whole. It is up to voters and legislators alike to make sure that this behavior does not go unchecked for too long, holding caucuses accountable for their actions and avoiding using them to supply politically charged projects with funds from state taxes.
The concept of a constitutional federal republic has been in place for centuries, which explains why citizens tend to elect their representatives and senators instead of electing a caucus (similar to European countries). As a result, the responsibilities faced by each individual are quite different: representatives answer to the district they were voted in from, whereas members of the binding caucuses are only accountable to the private membership within their own organization.
Our constitution is supposed to help manage the intricate balance of power which ensures that all interests are granted due attention and heard out before decisions are taken into effect. Although it may seem like an overly complicated system, its presence ultimately serves to ensure that all citizens remain both properly represented on a state level and protected from any unjust or oppressive action.
The power that our state constitution guarantees to the elected representatives and senators is not something that comes from a binding caucus. Therefore, whenever a binding caucus attempts to reduce an ousted member’s influence by reducing resources, firing their staff or minimizing their committee assignments, it is actually abridging a fundamental inherent political power that allows these individuals to practice their constitutional representational duties. It is obvious then, that the purpose of any attempt made by the caucus to marginalize a representative or senator should not be seen as a valid act but rather as a breach of the laws governing our state.
Speaker Tilton also voted to make Rep. Vance Chair of the Judiciary Committee
To summarize Sarah Vance’s bio from her website: she is a resident of Homer, Alaska and is a second generation politician. She is raising her four children there and is committed to bringing back the character of small town Alaska. She has worked in the fishing and tourism industries, helped with her family business, graduated from a local university with degrees in Small Business and Accounting, traveled the world doing mission work, and has run her own business. She has also been actively participating in the governmental process and advocating for accountability. She believes that she knows what it takes to put fish in the freezer and bread on the table.
What is the House Judiciary committee?
A Judiciary committee is a legislative committee in a state government that is responsible for overseeing the state’s judicial branch of government. This includes reviewing and making recommendations on legislation related to the courts, the legal system, constitutional legal issues. The committee may also hold oversight hearings to ensure that the courts and other judicial agencies are operating effectively and efficiently, and may make recommendations for changes to the state’s judicial system. The chair of the Judiciary committee would be responsible for setting the agenda for the committee and for leading the committee’s meetings and activities.
As a second generation politician, and now Chair of the Judiciary committee, will Rep. Sarah Vance put her family’s history behind her or continue with the corruption in Alaska?
Rep. Eastman ought to be the Chair of House Judiciary
David Eastman has served on the judiciary committee for the entirety of his six years in the legislature. Sarah Vance has served on the committee for two years. David is a military veteran, and former firefighter and military police officer. He believes that public safety and the protection of individual rights are the chief duty of state government. He has served in the law enforcement and emergency medical communities for over 20 years, and has a deep appreciation for the cost of keeping communities safe. He has experience working in the fire service, as well as with water rescue and hazmat teams. He has been a licensed ham radio operator since 1997. He is a West Point graduate and a former U.S. Army Captain. While in the Army he presided over trials as a summary court martial. He received a Bachelors of Science in Law & Legal Studies from West Point and studied jurisprudence as a post graduate at Oxford. He is an advocate for reform in the Alaska Republican Party and stands against special interests.
Is Rep. Sarah Vance likely to hold our rogue judicial branch of government accountable?
Rep. Eastman is clearly the better choice for Chair of Judiciary committee because of his extensive background and experience in law enforcement, and the protection of individual constitutional rights. While Rep. Vance is a second generation politician, Rep. Eastman, on the other hand, is a veteran of the United States and has served in many capacities to protect our country’s people and their rights throughout his career. He is well-versed in the application of the laws that govern us, which makes him uniquely qualified to lead the Judiciary committee as Chair.
Please contact Rep. Tilton at 907-373-6298 and tell her your thoughts on her vote to punish Rep. Eastman and 16,114 registered voters in Mat-Su House District 27 by blocking him from chairing a committee for standing against the binding caucus on behalf of his constituents.
The Constitution clearly states that all political power lies with the people, not with one biased individual.
Rep. Tilton needs to remember her oath to represent all Alaskans fairly, or she should step down from her position. If you agree that every voice deserves to be heard in our government, including those 16,114 registered voters that live in District 27, please contact Rep. Tilton and let her know your thoughts on this.