A Voter Pamphlet with Political Ads?

A Voter Pamphlet with Political Ads?

Ridiculous, if you ask me.

It could possibly be campaign misconduct in the third degree, if you ask a fast attorney.

Except its the fox guarding the hen house: the Alaska Division of Elections allowed strident campaign ads in their elections manual.  Not an unusual practice, however, this year it pinched a nerve.

Despite Alaska law that prohibits campaign signs and pamphlets from within 200 feet of a polling place on election day, you wouldn’t think to get cited for carrying in their very own “non-offending” Voter Pamphlet.

Though this year, you may.

Dodge this scenario: “Voters vs. State of Alaska Division of Elections,” for violating its own code.  And “State of Alaska Division of Elections vs. Voters,” for the same thing.

Allowing political ads inside an election manual is grenades close to what it would be like to have an election official at the polls wearing a campaign button.

Unacceptable.

Elections Chief: Parties Say What They Want in Voter Pamphlet

Way in the back is a page that caught some voters by surprise. It’s a negative ad against Sen. Mark Begich. The ad itself is standard fare in this election.

But Mary Toutonghi  a retired speech pathologist from Soldotna, says it has no place the voter pamphlet, which she thinks of as a source of non-partisan information.

“The idea of actually attacking somebody — Doing an attack ad in neutral pamphlet is just absolutely egregious,” she says.

The Republican Party of Alaska paid for the ad.  Alaska Elections Director Gail Fenumiai says state law lays out the rules for ads in the pamphlet.

“The parties are allowed to purchase two pages and there’s nothing in law that limits what they can include in their materials,” she says.

See Full Story: alaskapublic.org

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