Monday, November 1, 2010

Can We Do That Too?

A conservative radio squawker in Alaska has gotten himself in a bit of hot water and off the air.

Just like our local hosts of hate radio, the Alaskan squawker, Dan Fagan, spent most of his time bashing the liberal candidate, in this case, U.S. Senator Lisa Murkowski, and singing paeans to his preferred candidate. But then he got carried away:

About halfway through Fagan's show Thursday afternoon a caller phoned in to say he had just registered as a write-in candidate in the Senate race, which includes Miller, Murkowski, and Democrat Scott McAdams. The caller's provocation -- and the reason Fagan liked the idea -- was the Division of Elections' decision to provide voters who ask with a list of the write-in candidates. The Alaska Supreme Court is currently looking at the legality of that decision. Flooding that list with 150 names ranging from Michael Ames to Kathy Jo Zurek, Fagan figured, would mean fewer votes for Murkowski.

Fagan gave the addresses of the Anchorage and Wasilla offices of the Division of Elections and urged his listeners to drive over and register as write-in candidates.

Branch Haymans, an Anchorage financial advisor, was angered by Fagan's show Thursday afternoon. Haymans is a close friend of Murkowski's and has volunteered for her campaign, but is not part of her paid campaign staff.

On Friday morning, Haymans called KFQD and spoke with Joe Campbell, KFQD's program director. Haymans said he told Campbell that he thought Fagan's on-air behavior bordered on election tampering, but didn't threaten legal action or ask for Fagan to be taken off the air.

Campbell did not return a message requesting comment for this story.

"To send people with no legitimate reason other than to create confusion and chaos in an election seemed, to me, to be over the line," Haymans said. "He was no longer a talk show host. He was just a mouthpiece for Joe Miller."

Given that at least Charlie Sykes was using his Journal Broadcast sponsored show to do fund raising for Ron Johnson and Leah Vukmir, couldn't that be considered a violation of election laws? (Yeah, we already know it's unethical, but since when have the squawkers worried about ethics unless they could use it against a political rival of their buddies?)

H/T Las Vegas Badger

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