Election 2012: Democrat Geran Tarr v. Republican Cean Stevens for House District 17
ANCHORAGE - Two feisty women are vying for an open state House seat in Mountain View, Russian Jack and Airport Heights.
Geran Tarr served as chief of staff to Senator Johnny Ellis for five years, and she said that insider experience means she can hit the ground running as a legislator in Juneau.
She knows what it's like to be part of a minority caucus.
"It humbles you. And you learn that good ideas come from anywhere, and it's not about who gets the credit, it's about doing the right thing for Alaskans."
Tarr faces Cean Stevens, a Republican who co-owns two small businesses.
Stevens described herself this way: "I think i'm a hybrid. There are parts of me that are Republican, there are parts of me that are Libertarian, there's actually parts of me that are Democrat. But I think when you choose to run you have to pick a party and you have to pick a side."
One potential area of confusion in the race is on abortion.
Tarr is emphatically pro-choice, whereas Stevens arguably has not been consistent.
Tarr said of Stevens: "She is more extreme in her views on women's rights, and does not support abortion rights even in the case of rape or incest."
Stevens said: "Personally I am opposed to abortion. I think that most women use it as birth control. But the Libertarian part of me thinks that the government has no right whatsoever to tell a woman what she can do with her body, or a man, what he can do with his body."
But Stevens filled out one candidate survey in favor of criminalizing abortion except to save the life of the mother.
Both candidates talk about style.
Tarr said, "I would say i'm a much harder worker in terms of demonstrating to my neighbors that I really want to represent them. I’ve been out there pounding the pavement every day, at this point have been through the district multiple times."
Stevens countered, "I think that the difference is I get things done, and I'm not about meetings. I'm about action, and that's the kind of person I am. I'm action-based."
Voters will act on November 6.
To see the full unedited interview with Geran Tarr, click here.
To see the full unedited interview with Cean Stevens, click here.