Galvin takes on Young in congressional race
Political newcomer Alyse Galvin is trying to do something that hasn't been done in more than 40 years; beat Congressman Don Young in a general election.
"I'm running because Alaska needs a new voice," said Galvin, an independent and co-founder of the grassroots education group Great Alaska Schools.
Young, a former trapper and riverboat captain, says he has kept his seat because he "gets the job done." He has stayed on political point by talking about the number of bills he's passed in Congress.
"I've got 81 passed and signed by presidents; nine different presidents. The trans-Alaskan pipeline, that was my bill. And I'm quite proud of that, other than the fact it sure caused a lot of problems down in the state legislative body because they don't know how to handle the money," Young said.
Galvin says she has a base of more than 1,000 volunteers to help get her message out. She says she will work to protect social security, as well as people with pre-existing medical conditions while trying to lower prescription drug and healthcare costs.
She referred to the Nuka healthcare model in Alaska. Galvin says it's low-cost care that she says insures 100,000 people in Alaska. The Southcentral Foundation says funding comes from the Indian Health Service, VA, Medicaid/Medicare, third-party payers like private insurance, and grants.
"It includes things like primary care. And it includes mental health care, dental, vision, and specialty care when needed. It has the full package," Galvin said. "It's efficient. It's effective. Let's start talking about how Alaska can be the pioneer in healthcare."
Young says while he doesn't support the Affordable Care Act, also known as "Obamacare," he does support helping people with pre-existing medical conditions and lowering the costs of healthcare.
"Insuring across state lines. I say pooling healthcare insurance across state lands, pre-existing conditions, all of those things will be taken care of," the congressman said. "But drugs is one of our biggest challenges and the cost of them. And pharma knows, and they've ignored us so far, but I think you're going to see a big change in the near future."
Galvin has been critical of Young during the campaign for accepting corporate PAC money.
"I'm one who's going to be doing this differently. I'm not talking a dime from corporate PACs. So when I go to Congress, I'll be able to represent with clear conscience," said Galvin.
Young, however, defends his decision and says it's the way the political game works.
"I am one that believes that yes, unfortunately, you have to have money," he said. "So I will spend it so long as it's publicly displayed. To have criticism in that arena shows a short-sightedness of what's going on and an understanding of what it takes and the money spent."
In turn, Young criticized Galvin for her lack of political experience.
"To have her go in in a position she's in with the inexperience, the lack of any office-holding knowledge to represent Alaska in this very questionable time, I think it would be a disservice to Alaska," he said.
But to Galvin, that's part of her strength.
"I am not a career politician. And frankly, most Alaskans are so grateful. It's a breath of fresh air to see somebody who's like them representing Alaska," replied Galvin.
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