Articles & Op-eds


Fairbanks Daily News-Miner: Health reform revived: Murkowski says bills will advance via committee process

by Erin Granger

U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski of Alaska said the health care discussion in Congress is moving forward nearly a month after the failed Republican attempt to repeal the Affordable Care Act. "The committee process, which is something that I had been pounding the drum on for months and months, is underway," Murkowski said at a Monday interview with the Daily News-Miner editorial board. Murkowski, a Republican who was re-elected in November, was one of the deciding votes in blocking the repeal attempt i… Continue Reading


Alaska Public Media: Bill rider holds GE salmon at bay

by Liz Ruskin

Federal regulators have already approved a genetically engineered salmon for human consumption. One reason it's not for sale in the U.S.: A few short paragraphs that have hitched a ride on a congressional spending bill. Regulators say GE salmon can't be sold until the FDA publishes final labeling guidelines, and the agency hasn't. Sen. Lisa Murkowski has again inserted that rider in the agriculture spending bill, which would continue the restriction for another year. The bill cleared t… Continue Reading


E&E News: Timber interests cheer Senate energy bill provision

by Marc Heller

Energy legislation awaiting action in the Senate could boost timber interests trying to gain more business on federal construction projects. The bill, S. 1460, proposed in late June by Senate Energy and Natural Resources Chairwoman Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska), calls on the Energy Department to honor four industry-sponsored certification systems for sustainable forestry in "green" construction. That's more than U.S. EPA accepts for its green-building certification, and industry groups say the pro… Continue Reading


Alaska Dispatch News: An Alaskan wants to put a lettuce tower in every elementary school in America

by Erica Martinson

Last month, Bernie Karl flew down to Washington, D.C., and installed a hydroponic grow tower in Sen. Lisa Murkowski's office. Next, he wants to hit every public school in Alaska. Karl, who owns Chena Hot Springs northeast of Fairbanks, has a mission: He wants to teach kids how to feed their families using cheap, easily obtained materials. Karl's daughter has a tower at her house - hers grows strawberries and cherry tomatoes, he said. In Murkowski's office, the tower grows only lettuc… Continue Reading


Alaska Dispatch News: Farming Alaska’s seas

by Bethany Goodrich

It's 4:30 a.m. and the wake-up alarm screams. There is no escape. There's barely enough room to roll over. Lia Heifetz, Matthew Kern and Clayton Hamilton stumble to their feet in the dank belly of the F/V Dial West. Time to go kelping. "Kelp has always been a guaranteed catch for us when the fish weren't biting," laughs Heifetz. The crew pulls the anchor and leaves the quiet safety of Cosmos Cove, east of Baranof Island. They scan the opalescent horizon for beds of bullwhip kelp to harvest. He… Continue Reading


SitNews: Bills Introduced to Improve the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act

Last week a total of 15 bills were introduced to improve the 46 year-old Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act (ANCSA) and ensure that it continues to serve Alaska Native residents, tribes, and corporations. "ANCSA was intended to be a living measure that would change as the needs of Alaska Natives changed," U.S. Senator Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) said. "Over the years, Congress has amended the Act more than 40 times, and this package contains the latest series of common-sense solutions to real issues… Continue Reading


The Hill: Op-ed: Supporting the role of subnational governments and the value they add to our interests in the Arctic

by Senator Lisa Murkowski

Justice Louis Brandeis coined the phrase "laboratories of democracy" to describe how states, as subnational governments, could try social and economic experiments that might later become a model for the entire nation. Today a new, but similar laboratory is emerging in the Arctic, as regional and local leaders are connecting to share experiences and best practices. As the United States transitions away from its chairmanship of the Arctic Council, we would do well to look at what is taking place i… Continue Reading


APRN: Cordova hosts U.S. Senate field hearing on microgrids

by Rachel Waldholz

When it comes to emerging energy technologies, many remote Alaska communities are on the cutting edge. That was the message from Cordova this weekend, where U.S. Senator Lisa Murkowski held a field hearing of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, which she chairs. The focus of the hearing was microgrids: self-contained electrical grids, which can operate unconnected to any larger transmission system. They're a necessity for just about every Alaska community off the road system. Mos… Continue Reading


Alaska Dispatch News: OPINION: Investment in national parks pays rich return for Alaska

by Sarah Leonard

New Department of Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke's recent visit to Alaska made him one of what is likely to be a record number of visitors to Alaska's public lands this year. Public lands, including national parks and forest lands in Alaska, are a crucial part of our state's thriving tourism industry. Alaska has 15 national parklands comprising 60 percent of the entire national park system. People made more than 2.7 million visits to national parks in Alaska in 2016, infusing our economy… Continue Reading


Alaska Dispatch News: Interior secretary vows to reinvigorate Alaska oil industry

by Nathaniel Herz

President Donald Trump's interior secretary, Ryan Zinke, drew cheers from some industrial-minded Alaskans on Wednesday when he pledged to pave the way for new development on the North Slope and reinvigorate the state's oil industry. "The only path for energy dominance is a path through the great state of Alaska," Zinke told the audience at an Anchorage conference hosted by the state's major oil industry group, the Alaska Oil and Gas Association. Flanked by politicians and hard-… Continue Reading


KTVA: Interior Secretary Zinke focuses on energy, parks during Alaska visit

by Heather Hintze

Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke is in Alaska for his first visit to the state since his confirmation to the position in March. His first public appearance included a ride to the Alaska Veteran's Memorial on the George Parks Highway with the Alaska Vets Motorcycle Club for their 29th annual Memorial Run. "I think it's important on Memorial Day to recognize why we fight," Zinke said. "There's a kindred spirit among brothers and sisters who have fought and it's great to be in Alaska with them." He… Continue Reading


Ketchikan Daily News: EDITORIAL: Checked off

It's a checkmark in the "done" column. The U.S. Senate passed a 2017 appropriations bill this week, removing the all-too-frequent worry of whether the government will shut down. Instead of dragging out the question of whether it will, the bill covers federal expenses through the end of September. Federal agencies have their answer in what will be paid for. In Ketchikan, the answer is particularly welcome. An item included in the bill will eliminate the possibility of timber harvest on a porti… Continue Reading


Gray TV: Sen. Murkowski secures funding for Alaska in spending bill

by Ted Fioraliso

Lawmakers in Washington are a step closer to avoiding a government shutdown. On Wednesday, the House passed a $1 trillion spending bill to fund the federal government through September 30th. The Senate is expected to vote on the package on Thursday. As chair of Senate Appropriations Committee's Interior Subcommittee, Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) says she's in a position to ensure Alaska's interests are protected and represented. This omnibus spending bill includes funding to fight wildfires, EPA a… Continue Reading


Washington Post: Op-ed: No, Republicans didn't just strip away your Internet privacy rights

by Ahit Pai and Maureen Ohlhausen

April Fools' Day came early last week, as professional lobbyists lit a wildfire of misinformation about Congress's action - signed into law Monday by President Trump - to nullify the Federal Communications Commission's broadband privacy rules. So as the nation's chief communications regulator and the nation's chief privacy enforcer, we want to let the American people know what's really going on and how we will ensure that consumers' online privacy is protected. Let's set the record straight: Fi… Continue Reading


ELLE Magazine: Meet ELLE'S 2017 Women In Washington

by Rachael Combe

JUDY WOODRUFF | Anchor and managing editor, PBS Newshour Woodruff wears: Dress, Bottega Veneta, $5,750. Her own watch and Arminia Rubinacci earrings. MAX VADUKUL Watching Judy Woodruff lead NewsHour is like being able to take a deep breath after the information waterboarding that is media consumption, circa 2017. Woodruff's steady mien, substantive interviews, and impeccably nonpartisan reporting take you outside whatever bubble you're in-left or right-and leave you feeling that, even if you d… Continue Reading


Alaska Dispatch News: Murkowski wins award for supporting the arts

by Erica Martinson

Alaska Sen. Lisa Murkowski accepted an award Tuesday for her service in supporting the arts in a ceremony where advocates touted the value of federal funding for the National Endowment for the Arts. The program came in the week following President Donald Trump's budget request to slash arts funding, cutting the budgets of the NEA and the National Endowment for Humanities to zero. It is not a suggestion without precedent: President Ronald Reagan suggested cutting the programs in 1981, though it … Continue Reading


Alaska Dispatch News: 10 things Alaska's senators discussed in meeting with Trump and Zinke

by Erica Martinson

Alaska's senior senator, Lisa Murkowski, as she is wont to do, brought her maps with her to a meeting in the Oval Office on Wednesday. Sen. Dan Sullivan brought the numbers. Together, they aimed to show President Donald Trump and Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke what the new administration can do for Alaska as the state battles budget struggles and an unemployment rate among the highest in the nation. The issues they laid out for the president could very well act as a roadmap for the administrati… Continue Reading


Ketchikan Daily News: Op-Ed: Credit Due

When Alaska U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski spoke with anti-Trump protesters in Ketchikan on Presidents Day, she was fulfilling an important part of the job: Meeting with the people that elected her to represent them. It's not always pretty, it's not always organized and by no means will everyone agree, but it's important for elected officials to seek feedback from their constituents, and Murkowski deserves credit for going out to a public place - in this case, the mall - to do so. With just about e… Continue Reading


Fairbanks Daily News-Miner: Iranian researcher's journey back to Fairbanks complicated by Trump travel ban

by Kevin Baird

FAIRBANKS - Relief washed over Zeinab "Bahareh" Barati as she arrived at Fairbanks International Airport on Feb. 3. The Iranian-born biology researcher, who works at the Institute of Arctic Biology at the University of Alaska Fairbanks, had been in her hometown of Tehran, along with her daughter, Shler Ahmadi, visiting her ill mother since October. "I heard my mom was diagnosed with cancer and I decided to come and visit her," Barati said. "I heard from my siblings she was so weak and… Continue Reading


Your Alaska Link: U.S. Senator Lisa Murkowski: "Change Can Be An Extraordinary Opportunity For Us"

by Maria Athens

In an exclusive interview at the U.S. Senate, our Senior Senator offered her stance regarding the new Presidential Administration. U.S. Senator Lisa Murkowski stated, "People have been viewing 2017 and this new incoming administration as one of change, and change can be disruptive; change can be unsettling. But change can also be an extraordinary opportunity for us. I think we need to recognize that, and to embrace the opportunities that will present themselves when you have new leadership c… Continue Reading

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