Law | Politics

Sen. Begich criticizes state for targeting Alaska Native voters





Sen. Mark Begich (D-Alaska) says politicians in his state are trying to make it harder for Alaska Natives to vote.

Alaska Natives represent 16 percent of the state population. They played a major role in sending Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) back to Capitol Hill when she ran as a write-in candidate in 2010.

But Begich says voter identification efforts in Alaska and the state's participation in Shelby County v. Holder, a Voting Rights Act case before the U.S. Supreme Court, threaten that progress.

"There is no question in my mind -- it is targeted against the first people of this country," Begich told the National Congress of American Indians in Washington, D.C., last week.

Begich leveled similar criticisms at the state during his annual address to the Alaska State Legislature earlier in the week.

Get the Story:
Debate over Alaska Native voting may be a preview of 2014 Senate race (The Anchorage Daily News 3/10)