Alaska in Brief

Q&A with Alaska Senate District J candidate Andrew Satterfield

By: - July 28, 2022 12:30 am
The Senate chambers are seen at the Alaska State Capitol on Friday, May 13, 2022, in Juneau, Alaska. (Photo by James Brooks/Alaska Beacon)

The Senate chambers are seen at the Alaska State Capitol on Friday, May 13, 2022, in Juneau, Alaska. (Photo by James Brooks/Alaska Beacon)

The Alaska Beacon asked Alaska’s legislative candidates to answer a 15-question survey about their positions on a variety of issues. Read all of their responses here. Answers have not been edited.

Andrew Satterfield, Republican candidate from Anchorage

Yes/No questions

The Alaska Constitution allows legislators to call a constitutional convention at any time. Are you interested in calling a convention?


Would you be willing to join a coalition majority in which the opposite political party controls a majority of seats?


Should new public employees have access to a pension?


Should the state take over the federal permitting process that regulates construction in wetlands?


Should Juneteenth be a state holiday?


Open-ended questions

How should the state of Alaska set the amount of the Permanent Fund dividend each year?

Full Constitutional PFD

What’s the biggest need in your district, and how would you address it?

Safety – in regards to crime and homelessness. I would work to modify laws so that repeat offenders would be held accountable for their actions regardless of their mental competence (see the Loussac Library stabbing, Feb 13, 2022). I would seek to collaborate with both the non-profit services and the state funded rehab centers to expand capacity and capability.

What policies and laws should Alaska follow with regard to abortion?

Although, I respect the current precedent set by the Alaska Constitution that enables abortion to be on demand and up to birth, I would like to see this adjusted to include these factors:
(1) Scientists have recorded the remarkable phenomenon known as the “spark of life” when a human sperm cell makes contact with an egg. We should cherish all reproduction as a miracle of life. From this moment on, the fetus has a unique DNA code from the sperm and egg.
(2) After 6 weeks of gestation the fetus has a detectable heart beat, and the nose mouth, brain, and ears are developing. There is no question what is developing in the womb- a human being.
(3) An unborn baby feels pain at 12 weeks. Its reflexes kick in, and it begins to open and close its fingers.

On the basis of these 3 points and many more scientific facts, I would work to remove State funding for abortion. I would support any possible limitations to abortion especially after 12 weeks of gestation.

How should the state reduce the threat of gun violence and mass shootings?

We should encourage mass constitutional carry. I support anything the State can do to support and encourage the population to responsibly carry arms and collaborate with schools and other gun free zones.

How much should a legislator’s faith or religion determine state law and policy?

Regardless of outward religious expressions, faith and the individual’s spiritual perspective affects everyone’s policy making. For an individual to turn off or “white-wash” certain spiritual beliefs would be disingenuous of them. I expect every legislator to come to the table with their full selves – whether that be an Atheistic-Humanistic view or a Judeo-Christian view.

What should the state do to improve retention of public employees, including teachers?

There is no one size fits all answer, the range of departments and personnel are too vast. I would propose looking at a Tier Based system of benefits for public employees. This system would encourage the State departments to embrace the cyclical churn of public employees who move on, while rewarding employees who reach key milestone years such as year 6, and year 10.

What does an ideal state ferry system look like?

I am a city kid. My parents took me to Denali area and Kasilof every year year, but I’ve never been on a Ferry. I am proud of how enormous our State is and the many obstacles it has in enabling its citizens freedom to travel.

What, if any, changes does the state need to make to ensure voting is equitable and secure?

We should make a State holiday for elections, go back to paper voting, ensuring chain of command security, clear the voter rolls annually, no voting without I.D., outlaw ballot harvesting.
“Voters should know when their ballots are questioned or rejected and be informed of it immediately.” – Mike Showers

What do you intend to do about the poor returns of salmon in the Yukon and Kuskokwim drainages, and what are the main causes of the problems?

We should increase the amount of research and mitigation. Next we need to support the communities by offering increased opportunities for harvesting other available wildlife and resources. Lastly, try to identify new sustainable avenues for these communities to grow and thrive.

What constitutional amendments, if any, do you support?

Clarifying language concerning Abortion, the PFD, Gun Rights, and an Educational Voucher system.

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James Brooks
James Brooks

James Brooks is a longtime Alaska reporter, having previously worked at the Anchorage Daily News, Juneau Empire, Kodiak Mirror and Fairbanks Daily News-Miner. A graduate of Virginia Tech, he is married to Caitlyn Ellis, owns a house in Juneau and has a small sled dog named Barley. He can be contacted at [email protected].