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Fireweed247 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-19-08 12:54 PM
Original message
Mark Begich hopes to follow in father's steps
This is when the corruption in Alaska took hold...and we are now just starting to come out of it...

http://www.juneauempire.com/stories/110208/loc_35102400...

Nick Begich was running for re-election three weeks before the 1972 general election, and things were going remarkably well. He had won re-election in the Democratic primary handily, and was thought to be leading Republican challenger Don Young, a Fort Yukon school teacher and riverboat captain.

Begich also had landed a major coup for a freshman in Congress: House Majority Leader Hale Boggs had come to Alaska to campaign for him.

Boggs' interest in the faraway state indicated that Begich was seen as an up and comer on the national scene.

The Anchorage Daily News was excited to have the House Majority Leader in Alaska and covered his visit in detail.

"The silver-haired Congressman appeared accustomed to well-tailored dark suits on his well-fed frame; in short, the picture of a long-term, unopposed southern politician: Flowery and forceful," the paper's Allan Frank reported.

Boggs was the kind of principled politician Begich sought out, the paper said.

To the consternation of some of his Louisiana constituents, the Southern Democrat voted for the 1964 civil rights act and in Anchorage stood up to denounce President Richard Nixon, who was on his way to a landslide electoral victory in Alaska and elsewhere.

(Besides denouncing Nixon, Boggs was looking into the JFK assassination)

Interesting that we have been stuck with Don Young ever since this 'accident'
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nick_Begich

In 1970, Begich was elected to Alaska's at-large seat in the U.S. House of Representatives, defeating Republican banker Frank Murkowski (later a U.S. Senator and eventually Governor of Alaska). In 1972, he faced the Republican state senator Don Young. On October 16, 1972, he was aboard a twin engine Cessna 310 along with Congressman Hale Boggs of Louisiana when the plane disappeared during a flight from Anchorage to Juneau. Also on board were Begich's aide, Russell Brown, and the pilot, Don Jonz;<2> the four were heading to a campaign fundraiser for Begich.

In an enormous search effort, Coast Guard, Navy, and Air Force planes searched for the party. On November 24, 1972, after thirty-nine days, the search was abandoned. Neither the wreckage of the plane nor the pilot's and passengers' remains were ever found. All were presumed dead on December 29, 1972. The accident prompted Congress to pass a law mandating emergency locator transmitters in all U.S. civil aircraft. Posthumously, Begich won the 1972 election with 56% to Don Young's 44%. However, after Begich's declared death, a special election was called which was won by Young.



Now my question is....Will Mark Begich be safe?
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tularetom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-19-08 01:10 PM
Response to Original message
1. As long as he doesn't hang around with people who want to investigate Nixon
There was a recent show on discovery about this incident including extensive interviews with the Begich family and also a lot of speculation about why the search was called off amid claims that certain leads were not followed, radio communications ignored, records destroyed etc. It all sounded a bit mysterious and arcane.
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Blue_In_AK Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-19-08 01:20 PM
Response to Original message
2. Thank you for posting this.
I always thought it was sad that both Ted Stevens and Don Young came to power because of the death of good Democratic legislators. Ted Stevens was appointed to his position in 1968 by Gov. Wally Hickel following the death of Bob Bartlett. Wally had this to say in mid-August http://alaskadispatch.com/index.php?option=com_content&... :

I appointed him (Stevens) for only one reason to get the state seniority, Hickel told me today. Teds been alright, but now hes just going where the money goes."

I also interviewed Hickel on July 30, the day after Stevens was indicted, for a Newsweek article. At that time, he told me that he appointed Stevens not because he was a friend but because he was a survivor. I wanted a young guy who could be back in Washington for the next 20 or 30 years so we could gain some seniority to get things done up here. And that's what he did for us."



How much more time do you give Don? I expected him to be indicted by now.
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Fireweed247 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-19-08 02:07 PM
Response to Reply #2
3. I was just off reading about Bob Bartlett and how Stevens got in...
Edited on Wed Nov-19-08 02:08 PM by MartyL
Man, it is more corrupt than I realized!!!

In the November 1966 election in which Hickel was elected governor and Ted Stevens and other Republican candidates assumed control of both houses of the Alaska state legislature, Bob Bartlett was reelected to the Senate with more than seventy-five percent of the vote. Four years earlier Ernest Gruening had easily defeated Ted Stevens. All told, since 1958 Republican candidates had lost five Senate elections.

But if neither Bartlett nor Gruening could be beat, maybe one of them would die....

Setting about the ghoulish work, in February 1967 all fourteen Republican members of the Alaska Senate cosponsored a bill that included a provision amending the election code to eliminate the party affiliation requirement. The purpose of the so-called reform was no secret. Lets not hide the issue, Democratic Senator Nick Begich taunted the conspirators when the bill was called to the floor. You cant win an election to the United States Senate, so you want to come in the back door by an appointment.

The unspoken Republican retort was, You bet. On a party-line vote the bill passed the Senate. Six days later Majority Leader Stevens jammed the bill through the House, again on a party-line vote. Wally Hickel allowed the bill to become law without his signature, after which the preemptive theft was forgotten until December 11, 1968, when Bob Bartlett died of complications that arose after open-heart surgery.

Before going under the knife the senator tried to cheer up his staff by reporting in a memorandum to his Washington office that he had reminded his surgeon that he was carrying a heavy responsibility in hacking away at me because if I die on the table I have a strong feeling, although not the definite knowledge, that the governor of Alaska would not appoint a successor of my political faith. Shrewd pol to the end, Bob Bartlett knew his man....

http://www.alaskadispatch.com/features/2-features/161-m...

And that's how we got Ted Stevens!!!!
:wow: :nuke:
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Blue_In_AK Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-19-08 03:05 PM
Response to Reply #3
6. Wow, I didn't know that back story.
That makes it even worse than I thought. Hopefully, Mark's election will begin the great turnaround here. I was always aware that Alaska was staunchly Democratic at the time of statehood, that in fact Eisenhower was reluctant to sign the Statehood Act because of the consequences of three more Democrats in the legislature, but I had no idea of these Machiavellian maneuverings in the state legislature. That's just sick -- and ghoulish, even. I have no words.
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Cha Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-19-08 02:16 PM
Response to Original message
4. A Rec'd and a Kick for the new Democratic
Senator from Alaska and may this hail a new non corrupt era for them.

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Geoff R. Casavant Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-19-08 02:23 PM
Response to Original message
5. I remember reading about Hale Boggs
Of course, it was in a book about conspiracy theories. According to said book, Mr. Boggs was driven to the airport by none other than a young William Jefferson Clinton IV. Never seen this confirmed in any other credible source, but if it were true . . . . pass the tinfoil.
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malaise Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-19-08 03:11 PM
Response to Original message
7. Didn't know this
How many sitting Democratic Congressmen or women and Senators (Federal or state) have died in plane crashes versus Rethugs in the past 40 years.
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