Murkowski Constituents Voice Concerns To Senator At Fairbanks Luncheon

Published: May. 12, 2017 at 8:41 PM AKDT
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Thursday, in the Westmark Hotel, over three hundred people convened to lunch and to listen to the featured speaker, Senator Lisa Murkowski.

The Ladies That Lunch Committee has held the annual event for the last 14 years. Senator Murkowski started her speech with the observation that Fairbanks is receiving much deserved attention during the week of the Arctic.

"there's a lot going on here in Fairbanks, Alaska and I hope that you feel proud really being a part of that."

Senator Murkowski then took questions from the audience. Lunch goers asked her questions ranging from a wide variety of topics from her thoughts on the firing of FBI director, Comey, to why she feels Planned Parenthood is an asset to Alaskans.

"I was in support of Comey or don't support comey. The timing is one that has raised true initiative. I won't have a good and fair and honest gation. I want to do everything that I can to continue access. I haven't believed that planned parenthood provides access to communities."

The luncheon was not without controversy.

Members of the group, Defend The Sacred Alaska disrupted the speech in protest to Senator Murkowski's statement that caribou herds have not been effected by the pipeline. According to DTSA member and Kaltag resident, Misty Nickoli, many communities no longer have access to the caribou herds they traditionally subsisted on because of the Trans Alaska Pipeline. Other people stood up to protest Murkowski cancelling her public town hall meeting on Monday, stating that people shouldn't have to pay to speak to their leadership.

After Murkowski's speech, she commented on the significance of the Fairbanks Declaration regarding climate change. The document was signed by members of indigenous groups, as well as representatives from 8 countries within the Arctic Circle.

Murkowski voiced her observations of Secretary of State Rex Tillerson's participation in the Arctic Council.

"the golden heart city will be moralizing those declarations for a long time. He spoke to some of the issues that you may relate to economies in the arctic, the issues of a warming climate, and the impact that we see the need for for greater resistance."

For more information on Senator Murkowski, go to

Amanda Brennan reporting.