Thursday, April 2, 2009

Not-so-mixed reactions to Ted Stevens

This AP headline claims that "Alaskans have mixed reactions to Stevens' case," but the article disagrees. Here are the reactions:

"We knew it all along," Pederson said after the federal government Wednesday moved to dismiss the case against Stevens. "Unfortunately, it's a little too late."

"If they had done that before, he'd still be senator," Bob Sloan, a non-denominational church pastor, said at an Anchorage coffee shop.

"It's disgusting," said Jim Murphy, a longtime Stevens supporter until he was charged. "Clearly a jury thought he was guilty. He was judged by his peers, but somehow wielded his influence and power," Murphy said. "I just think the average guy would be sitting in jail right now."

"I think it's awesome," said Chris Roberts, a 20-year resident who is a snowmobile tour operator and gift shop owner. "How could you not like a guy with the nickname of 'Uncle Ted.'"

"I think they should get rid of Begich and get Stevens back in. The only reason Begich won was because of the unjust words said against Ted," said Judy Basler, a 33-year resident of Girdwood. "You wouldn't do that to your grandpa. He's like the grandpa of our state."

Stevens's campaign manager: "Just watching this, and the misconduct that has gone on, to me seems unbelievable, but this is a step in the right direction," he said. "I just feel sad for Senator Stevens that this has been able to happen to him and have such a negative impact on his life."

Sarah Palin: "Senator Stevens deserves to be very happy today. What a horrible thing he has endured. The blatant attempts by adversaries to destroy one's reputation, career and finances are an abuse of our well-guarded process and violate our God-given rights afforded in the Constitution," she said.

Alaska Senator Mark Begich: "It's time for Senator Stevens, his family and Alaskans to move on and put this behind us," Begich said.


Not only are the reactions unmixed, they're baffling. You would think Stevens had been exonerated. Alaskans are so weird.


Grobstein said...

There's Mr. Murphy in there.

But I assume Alaskans voting for this guy knew more about him than outsiders, so they may not have been especially surprised by the charges against him. If they liked him before, they liked him after.

Zed said...

The outrage seems misplaced seeing as he was let off on a technicality. It is probably true that he'd still be senator if he hadn't been convicted, but -- esp. for Alaskans -- it wasn't a secret that he was corrupt. What's weird is that the timeline is backwards: Alaskans think that the trial was politically motivated in order to oust him as senator, whereas what really happened was that the Democrats got interested in ousting him only _after_ they realized he was jailbound.

It's amusing, btw, that Sarah Palin's reaction is to map Ted Stevens onto herself.