Legislature(2003 - 2004)

04/01/2003 03:32 PM Senate STA

Audio Topic
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
                    ALASKA STATE LEGISLATURE                                                                                  
            SENATE STATE AFFAIRS STANDING COMMITTEE                                                                           
                         April 1, 2003                                                                                          
                           3:32 p.m.                                                                                            
MEMBERS PRESENT                                                                                                               
Senator Gary Stevens, Chair                                                                                                     
Senator John Cowdery, Vice Chair                                                                                                
Senator Gretchen Guess                                                                                                          
MEMBERS ABSENT                                                                                                                
Senator Fred Dyson                                                                                                              
Senator Lyman Hoffman                                                                                                           
COMMITTEE CALENDAR                                                                                                            
CS FOR HOUSE JOINT RESOLUTION NO. 18(MLV) am                                                                                    
Supporting the men and women of the United States armed forces.                                                                 
     MOVED SCS CSHJR 18 (STA) OUT OF COMMITTEE                                                                                  
SENATE BILL NO. 137                                                                                                             
"An Act imposing a tax on employment; and providing for an                                                                      
effective date."                                                                                                                
     SCHEDULED BUT NOT HEARD                                                                                                    
SENATE BILL NO. 29                                                                                                              
"An Act establishing  a sunset date for each  department of state                                                               
government;  relating to  the review  of the  functions of  state                                                               
agencies,  certain  instrumentalities  of the  state,  and  other                                                               
persons and offices."                                                                                                           
     SCHEDULED BUT NOT HEARD                                                                                                    
PREVIOUS ACTION                                                                                                               
HJR 18 - No previous action to record.                                                                                          
SB 137 - No previous action to record.                                                                                          
SB 29 - No previous action to record.                                                                                           
WITNESS REGISTER                                                                                                              
Representative Bob Lynn                                                                                                         
     Alaska State Capitol, Room 415                                                                                             
     Juneau, AK  99801-1182                                                                                                     
     POSITION STATEMENT: Bill sponsor                                                                                         
     Carol Klopf                                                                                                                
     1191 Eastwood Lane                                                                                                         
     Fairbanks, AK 99702                                                                                                        
     POSITION STATEMENT: Opposed HJR 18                                                                                       
     Ann Godduhn                                                                                                                
     940 Sheep Creek Road                                                                                                       
     Fairbanks, AK 99701                                                                                                        
     POSITION STATEMENT: Opposed HJR 18                                                                                       
     Suzanne Rich                                                                                                               
     No address provided                                                                                                        
     POSITION STATEMENT: Opposed HJR 18                                                                                       
     Nina Mollett                                                                                                               
     No address provided                                                                                                        
     POSITION STATEMENT: Opposed HJR 18                                                                                       
     Sister Diane Bardol                                                                                                        
     Kodiak, AK 99615                                                                                                           
     POSITION STATEMENT: Opposed HJR 18                                                                                       
     Kate Finn                                                                                                                  
     Kindness Without Borders                                                                                                   
     No address provided                                                                                                        
     POSITION STATEMENT: Opposed HJR 18                                                                                       
     Alana Grear                                                                                                                
     No address provided                                                                                                      
     POSITION STATEMENT: Opposed HJR 18                                                                                       
     Robert Ward                                                                                                                
     No address provided                                                                                                        
     POSITION STATEMENT: Opposed HJR 18                                                                                       
     Jim Sykes                                                                                                                  
     No address provided                                                                                                        
     POSITION STATEMENT: Opposed HJR 18                                                                                       
     Chris Riggio                                                                                                               
     4031 Woronzof Drive                                                                                                        
     Anchorage, AK 99517                                                                                                        
     POSITION STATEMENT: Opposed HJR 18                                                                                       
Kathleen McClellan                                                                                                              
No address provided                                                                                                             
POSITION STATEMENT: Opposed HJR 18                                                                                            
Stacey Fritz                                                                                                                    
Fairbanks Coalition for Peace and Justice                                                                                       
No address provided                                                                                                             
POSITION STATEMENT: Opposed HJR 18                                                                                            
Ryan Tinsley                                                                                                                    
No address provided                                                                                                           
POSITION STATEMENT: Opposed HJR 18                                                                                            
Douglas Leggett                                                                                                                 
No address provided                                                                                                             
POSITION STATEMENT: Opposed HJR 18                                                                                            
Marilyn Russell                                                                                                                 
No address provided                                                                                                           
POSITION STATEMENT: Opposed HJR 18                                                                                            
ACTION NARRATIVE                                                                                                              
TAPE 03-13, SIDE A                                                                                                            
CHAIR GARY STEVENS called the Senate State Affairs Standing                                                                   
Committee meeting to order at 3:32 p.m. Present were Senators                                                                   
Cowdery, Guess and Chair Gary Stevens.                                                                                          
The first order of business was HJR 18.                                                                                         
              HJR 18-SUPPORTING U.S. ARMED FORCES                                                                           
CHAIR GARY STEVENS asked Representative Lynn to take a seat at                                                                  
the witness table.                                                                                                              
REPRESENTATIVE BOB LYNN, bill sponsor, gave the following                                                                       
     Good  afternoon   Mr.  Chairman  and  members   of  the                                                                    
     committee.  I thank  you for  hearing HJR  18 today.  I                                                                    
     don't have a  lot to say about  it. Probably everything                                                                    
     I could say about it or  should say about it, I said at                                                                    
     the rally  on Friday. I do  have a copy of  the remarks                                                                    
     that  I gave  on  Friday,  which I  won't  read to  you                                                                    
          because  you already  heard it.  I'll submit  it as  my                                                               
          written testimony.  [See bill file.]  I do urge  you to                                                               
          pass this  out of  committee. Our  troops need  to have                                                               
          tangible evidence of the official  support of the State                                                               
          of Alaska to  help us win the war and  to protect human                                                               
          life. I said  during my comments at the  rally, 'If you                                                               
          don't  have the  morale  you need  that endangers  your                                                               
          life.' And as  a Vietnam Veteran, I know  I didn't have                                                               
          that when I came back  from Vietnam. I don't want these                                                               
          troops and  supporters to have  to go through  the same                                                               
          thing that  some of us  Vietnam Veterans did.  And with                                                               
          that, I would urge you to pass it.                                                                                    
     CHAIR  GARY STEVENS  noted  there was  a great  turn  out at  the                                                          
 REPRESENTATIVE LYNN replied he was pleased with the audience.                                                                  
     SENATOR JOHN COWDERY commended the  Representative on the work he                                                          
     did, but was disappointed that he didn't see it on TV.                                                                     
     REPRESENTATIVE LYNN stated to the  best of his knowledge, Channel                                                          
     2 did not  cover the event, but he understands  some of the local                                                          
     stations did.                                                                                                              
     SENATOR COWDERY said he would like to move the bill.                                                                       
     CHAIR GARY  STEVENS noted a  letter from Mr. Thompson  points out                                                          
     that the  troops haven't all  made the ultimate  sacrifice, which                                                          
     is death.  He suggests on  page 2, line  1 to delete  "have made"                                                          
     and   insert  "are   prepared   to  make".   He   asked  if   the                                                          
     Representative would be comfortable with that change.                                                                      
     REPRESENTATIVE LYNN agreed to the change.                                                                                  
     There being no objection, the motion passed.                                                                               
     CHAIR GARY STEVENS  announced there were a number  of people that                                                          
     were waiting to give testimony.                                                                                            
     SENATOR  GRETCHEN  GUESS  remarked  she  didn't  know  whether  a                                                          
     country could make the ultimate sacrifice.                                                                                 
     CHAIR GARY STEVENS called for public testimony.                                                                            
     CAROL  KLOPF   testified  from  the   Fairbanks  LIO   in  strong                                                          
     opposition to HJR 18. As  elected representatives of the State of                                                          
Alaska, legislators  should be representing  all the  citizens of                                                               
Alaska. Because  there are large  numbers of individuals  on both                                                               
sides of the issue, it's wrong  for the Legislature to take sides                                                               
regarding  the  war in  Iraq.  She  thought nearly  all  Alaskans                                                               
support the soldiers and military  personnel and said, "We in the                                                               
peace community  do support our  soldiers, we just  don't support                                                               
President  Bush." She  advised there  was a  different resolution                                                               
that was prepared that states  support of the United States Armed                                                               
Forces and  members of the  peace community believe the  State of                                                               
Alaska should endorse the resolution.                                                                                           
ANN  GODDUHN  testified  from  the  Fairbanks  LIO.  She  and  56                                                               
affiliates  of  the  University of  Alaska,  Fairbanks  signed  a                                                               
declaration  objecting  to the  adoption  of  HJR 18  because  it                                                               
proclaimed support  for the armed military  interception in Iraq.                                                               
They  did express  support  and deep  appreciation  for the  U.S.                                                               
Armed Services for their dedication of cause.                                                                                   
CHAIR GARY  STEVENS ask her to  send the list of  the individuals                                                               
that signed the declaration rather than reading them.                                                                           
MS. GODDUHN  replied she  would prefer to  read the  list because                                                               
all the people were planning to give testimony.                                                                                 
SENATOR  GUESS  stated  the  resolution  mentions  Iraq,  but  it                                                               
focuses on  the support for  the armed  services and does  a good                                                               
job  of  balancing a  difficult  issue  for  some people  in  the                                                               
nation. She  asked Ms. Godduhn and  Ms. Klopf to point  to places                                                               
in the resolution that were  objectionable because the resolution                                                               
is about supporting the men and women in the armed services.                                                                    
MS. GODDUHN  replied she  did not  have a  copy of  the committee                                                               
substitute,  but  the  original   document  had  strong  language                                                               
supporting  President  Bush's  initiative  in  taking  preemptive                                                               
action. She  advised she was giving  her own views, but  the idea                                                               
of  altering the  war paradigm  to include  preemptive action  as                                                               
legitimate was  an incredibly dangerous step.  She expressed deep                                                               
disappointment that the State of  Alaska would consider endorsing                                                               
that kind of paradigm shift.                                                                                                    
SENATOR  GUESS said  she didn't  see that  in the  resolution and                                                               
asked her  to review the version  that passed the House  and then                                                               
get back to her for further discussion.                                                                                         
MS.  GODDUHN  observed  the  language   was  toned  down  in  the                                                               
committee substitute,  but the resolution still  endorses the war                                                               
and supports  President Bush  as evidenced  by the  language, "as                                                               
     this nation  is engaged in  combat." She said this  is misleading                                                          
     the  public   regarding  the  origins  of   this  new  preemptive                                                          
     paradigm.  She heartily  agreed there  is a  need to  support the                                                          
     troops, but not the war.                                                                                                   
     SENATOR  COWDERY  said, "You  say  you  have  50 names  from  the                                                          
     university and  it's ironic.... I'd  be interested in  looking at                                                          
     those names of the faculty there  that have them if you'd send it                                                          
     to us  because they're down here  asking for money as  you speak.                                                          
     And  also, are  you  supportive of  the  devastating events  that                                                          
     happened in New York when they hit our towers?"                                                                            
     MS.  GODDUHN exclaimed  she grew  up  in Brooklyn  and loves  the                                                          
     city. She entreated  him not to misrepresent this  as being anti-                                                          
     American. She  is as much an  American as anybody who  was killed                                                          
     in the  towers. Although  President Bush has  held that  Iraq was                                                          
     behind the attack, it hasn't been substantiated.                                                                           
     SENATOR COWDERY said he would like to move the bill.                                                                       
     CHAIR GARY STEVENS advised there  were many people that needed to                                                          
     speak and he wanted to hear them.                                                                                          
     SENATOR COWDERY noted there was a caucus in 45 minutes.                                                                    
     CHAIR GARY  STEVENS announced the committee  would take testimony                                                          
     from  three people  in Fairbanks  initially then  give people  at                                                          
     other  sites an  opportunity  before returning  to Fairbanks.  He                                                          
     asked that testimony be limited to a minute or so.                                                                         
     SUZANNE RICH  from Fairbanks  testified she  was an  organizer of                                                          
     SOS for  peace, which was a  group of 375 Fairbanks  citizens who                                                          
     are opposed to going to war  in Iraq. She supports the troops and                                                          
     that is  the reason she  is against the  war. The U.S.  must take                                                          
     responsibility for the  part we played in  putting Suddam Hussein                                                          
     in power and  that we turned our back when  he was using chemical                                                          
     weapons. She added the American people  need to be told the truth                                                          
     and she  is totally  against HJR 18  but she  absolutely supports                                                          
     the troops.                                                                                                                
     NINA MOLLET  said she  was unhappy  that the  hearing for  HJR 18                                                          
     wasn't noticed. She  was sure a large number  of Juneau residents                                                          
     would  have  attended  if  they had  knowledge  of  the  hearing.                                                          
     According to the Juneau Empire,  there were 1,500 participants at                                                          
     one peace rally. There have  also been weekly meetings to discuss                                                          
     peace rather than war with Iraq.                                                                                           
She said  she didn't  have prepared  comments because  she didn't                                                               
know  about the  meeting until  the  last minute.  She added,  "I                                                               
don't know whether this was deliberate or some kind of mistake."                                                                
CHAIR GARY STEVENS explained the  five-day rule [Uniform Rule 23]                                                               
was waived on the Senate floor on 3/27/03.                                                                                      
MS. MOLLETT pointed out when you  look at the schedule you didn't                                                               
see that this was being considered and people didn't know.                                                                      
She  noted  there  was  a  moving letter  in  the  Juneau  Empire                                                               
thanking  people who  disagreed with  the war  for attending  the                                                               
rally.  She added,  "This is  a very  divisive resolution  and it                                                               
would be much better to have  a resolution that more people would                                                               
feel comfortable with." It's deliberately  divisive and is trying                                                               
to put democrats on the defensive  so that if they don't go along                                                               
with the resolution they'll be attacked as being unpatriotic.                                                                   
She  said the  rest  of  the world  sees  the  history of  Saddam                                                               
Hussein differently than  the U.S. does because he  was placed in                                                               
power by  the United States in  a military coup. She  pointed out                                                               
the U.S.  doesn't have a  very good  reputation in that  area for                                                               
bringing  freedom. "This  is very  simplistically worded  that we                                                               
are fighting for their freedom."                                                                                                
She quoted  from the Kurdistan  Democratic Party  opposition that                                                               
has  been  shut out  by  the  Bush  Administration. "There  is  a                                                               
difference between  a war  of liberation and  a war  of conquest.                                                               
Liberation means Iraqis are at  the forefront. Conquest means the                                                               
invaders  are in  charge." She  urged the  Legislature to  pass a                                                               
resolution  supporting the  troops that  she could  sign. Judging                                                               
from the letters to the  editor, this resolution alienates a huge                                                               
population. HJR 18  shuts out people who are  patriotic but don't                                                               
feel the war in Iraq is a just war.                                                                                             
SENATOR  GUESS stated  that  as a  member of  the  Senate she  is                                                               
always ready to  admit her mistakes and she wanted  to extend her                                                               
apologies  for waiving  the five-day  notification  rule. It  was                                                               
done for the  right reason, which was the rally  on Friday, March                                                               
28, 2003.  There was  no other  motive in  doing so.  She doesn't                                                               
view  the  resolution as  an  attempt  to  put Democrats  on  the                                                               
defensive  and   the  Representative  from  Anchorage   has  good                                                               
intentions regarding supporting the troops.                                                                                     
As the sole  Democrat member in attendance, she  wanted it stated                                                               
in the record  she does not take issue  with the Representative's                                                               
motives and she disagrees with Ms. Mollett's interpretation.                                                                    
     MS.  MOLLETT  replied  she  was  not  impugning  his  motives  in                                                          
     particular, but she  knows what happens at election  time and she                                                          
     knows  some Democratic  legislators in  the state  who have  felt                                                          
     isolated after speaking against a resolution on principle.                                                                 
 CHAIR GARY STEVENS asked whether there were further comments.                                                                  
     SENATOR GUESS replied  no one was more aware than  she of some of                                                          
     those votes,  but she wanted to  make it clear that,  "We try not                                                          
     to impugn the motives of people."                                                                                          
     SENATOR  COWDERY   commented  there  is  never   100  percent  on                                                          
  anything, but the majority of Americans support this effort.                                                                  
     SISTER  DIANE  BARDOL from  Kodiak  opposed  HJR 18  because  the                                                          
     resolution  seems to  say that  to  support the  troops you  must                                                          
     support  United  States' involvement  in  war  in Iraq.  To  her,                                                          
     supporting the troops means bringing  them home and stopping war.                                                          
     The last  few lines of  the resolution states resolve  to support                                                          
     President George  W. Bush  as this nation  is engaged  in combat.                                                          
     This appears to be the primary  purpose of HJR 18 and secondarily                                                          
     it expresses support  to the men and women in  the armed services                                                          
     and  the coalition.  If her  brother or  nephews were  engaged in                                                          
     this  war, she  wouldn't be  slightly comforted  by a  resolution                                                          
     such as HJR 18.                                                                                                            
     KATE  FINN from  Anchor  Point  opposed HJR  18  as  a member  of                                                          
     Kindness Without Boarders. She didn't  have the time to prepare a                                                          
     statement because of  the way the bill was  noticed. However, she                                                          
     felt she could be quite succinct  and say she did not support the                                                          
     President on  his position  in Iraq  at all. If  she were  in the                                                          
     armed forces  she would not  be the  least bit comforted  by this                                                          
     resolution.  If the  true intent  of the  resolution was  to show                                                          
     support  for the  troops, "It's  way off  target." The  Fairbanks                                                          
     Coalition  for Peace  and Justice  made a  resolution that  is on                                                          
     record  as of  March  28  and clearly  supports  the troops.  She                                                          
     suggested using that  resolution as a model if the  intent of HJR
     18 was indeed  to support the troops. Personally,  she abhors the                                                          
     war and believes  we are in it for the  wrong reasons. She thinks                                                          
     the President is  being dishonest with U.S. citizens.  If we knew                                                          
     the  real motivation  we  might feel  differently,  but we  truly                                                          
     don't know  what we're doing there.  She said, "I will  object to                                                          
     this  war   till  the   last  day  and   I  support   our  troops                                                          
     completely...  I don't  object  to them  being  there, it's  what                                                          
     they're doing."                                                                                                            
The  resolution doesn't  do  its  stated intent  and  there is  a                                                               
better one  in place to make  that happen. She said,  "You do not                                                               
have  the   support  of   a  large   percentage  of   the  Alaska                                                               
ALANA GREAR from Homer opposed  HJR 18. Additionally, she and the                                                               
people  in the  Homer office  took issue  with Senator  Cowdery's                                                               
comments regarding University funding.                                                                                          
ROBERT WARD from Homer opposed HJR  18. He was unable to read his                                                               
prepared statement, but if the  intent was to support the troops,                                                               
it  shouldn't  include support  for  the  President in  the  same                                                               
document. "The President  is currently engaged in  an illegal war                                                               
which  goes against  all normal  international law  including the                                                               
United  Nations Charter."  If the  President  truly supports  the                                                               
troops  he  asked why  he  is  leaving  veteran health  care  and                                                               
education needs short funded.                                                                                                   
He advised he would send the Chair a copy of his testimony.                                                                     
JIM SYKES testified from the Mat-Su  LIO in opposition to HJR 18.                                                               
He  read the  following  from  a letter.  "I'm  a  vet, a  former                                                               
infantryman who has  recently taken up the  unappreciated task of                                                               
removing   unexploded   ordinance    [munitions]   from   various                                                               
locations. I  completely understand and appreciate  all those who                                                               
want to support  those of us in uniform. However,  there seems to                                                               
be a pretty wide gulf between  those who support us by wanting us                                                               
all  to come  home safe  and  those who  claim to  support us  by                                                               
wanting us to go to war  and apparently stay there. If I actually                                                               
believed we  would want  to put  a real  democracy in  the Middle                                                               
East, maybe  I would be more  supportive. Call me cynical,  but I                                                               
just don't see it happening."                                                                                                   
As Senator Robert Byrd said, "This is  a war of choice, not a war                                                               
of  necessity."  He added  he  has  attended  a number  of  peace                                                               
rallies and has yet  to meet any who oppose the  men and women in                                                               
uniform. Veterans who have never  attended a demonstration before                                                               
have participated.  There is no question  regarding the universal                                                               
support  for the  uniformed forces;  the  opposition arises  from                                                               
President Bush's policy for war.                                                                                                
He said the  committee had three options: to  pass no resolution,                                                               
to  pass HJR  18,  or to  amend  HJR 18.  He  proposed passing  a                                                               
resolution  that unifies  Alaskans rather  than one  that divides                                                               
them. He suggested the following:                                                                                               
   · Keep the first "WHEREAS"                                                                                                   
        · Keep the "WHEREAS" at the top of page 2 and change the                                                                
          wording as set forth in amendment 1                                                                                   
        · Keep the "FURTHER RESOLVED" as the only "RESOLVED"                                                                    
        · Strike the balance of the resolution                                                                                  
     CHRIS RIGGIO from Anchorage testified in opposition to HJR 18.                                                             
     He advised he would fax his testimony to the Chair. He read the                                                            
     following shortened version:                                                                                               
          I've been a  resident of Alaska since 1993.  I'm also a                                                               
          former officer  in the  United States  Air Force  and I                                                               
          served in the  Persian Gulf during 1990  and 1991. I've                                                               
          seen war and  I'm against the blind use  of violence to                                                               
          solve international problems. I'm  here today on behalf                                                               
          of  the Iraqi  people,  the American  troops and  their                                                               
          families, and millions of Americans  who cannot be here                                                               
          today to speak out against this war in Iraq.                                                                          
          More specifically,  I'm here  today to voice  my strong                                                               
          opposition  to  HJR  18.  This   invasion  of  Iraq  is                                                               
          immoral,  illegal,  and unjust.  This  war  is also  in                                                               
          violation of  international law as  well as  the United                                                               
          Nations  Charter. President  Bush's arguments  for this                                                               
          inappropriate  use   of  force  are   illegitimate  and                                                               
          unsupported by facts.                                                                                                 
          I  urge you  to  consider the  grim  realities of  this                                                               
          conflict. This  war is about oil  and imperialism. Over                                                               
          one week  ago Congress  nearly unanimously  supported a                                                               
          resolution  similar to  HJR 18  supporting the  war and                                                               
          supporting the  troops. But less than  one week earlier                                                               
          Congress  also   passed  a  bill   drastically  cutting                                                               
          support  to   the  Veterans  Administration   which  is                                                               
          already limping along and unable  to support all of its                                                               
          several million  veterans from  WW II,  Korea, Vietnam,                                                               
          Gulf War I and hundreds  of other U.S. military actions                                                               
          throughout  the world.  We  still  haven't figured  out                                                               
          what is wrong with  the thousands of veterans suffering                                                               
          from the Gulf War Syndrome.                                                                                           
          Who   are   we   supporting   with   these   ridiculous                                                               
          resolutions? Is  it really the Bush  Administration and                                                               
          the  multi-national corporations  who are  lined up  at                                                               
          the  feeding  trough for  pieces  of  Iraq who  we  are                                                               
          supporting?  And yet  there will  be thousands  of U.S.                                                               
          veterans from this war who  will need help dealing with                                                               
          the  physical  and  emotional problems  resulting,  but                                                               
     they will likely be abandoned  by their country at that                                                                    
     Let's  support our  troops by  calling an  end to  this                                                                    
     illegal  war   and  stopping   the  killing   of  Iraqi                                                                    
     citizens,  Iraqi military,  and U.S.  soldiers. Let  us                                                                    
     end this  slaughter, this bloodshed and  destruction of                                                                    
     life  on earth.  Let  the inspections  work. Let's  act                                                                    
     like a global  citizen instead of a  global tyrant. Let                                                                    
     us  work with  the international  community instead  of                                                                    
     unilaterally against it.                                                                                                   
     Again, I  urge you to end  debate on HJR 18  and shelve                                                                    
     this proposal  for eternity.  I strongly  encourage you                                                                    
     to have a  backbone, unlike our Congress,  and stand up                                                                    
     for  what  is right  and  just  and pass  a  resolution                                                                    
     condemning this  destructive war. Please, for  the sake                                                                    
     of human life,  our children and our Earth,  do what is                                                                    
KATHLEEN McCLELLAN from Anchorage  testified in opposition to HJR
18. She  has been active in  Alaskan's for Peace and  Justice and                                                               
there  are  many  people  that  would have  come  to  oppose  the                                                               
resolution had  they known  they could express  their views  at a                                                               
hearing.  She  supports the  troops  but  opposes the  resolution                                                               
based  on her  opposition to  the expressions  in support  of the                                                               
war. She  supports bringing  the troops home  from an  unjust and                                                               
illegal conflict.  It's hypocritical  to cut veteran  benefits at                                                               
the same that you claim to support the troops.                                                                                  
4:10 pm                                                                                                                         
Saddam Hussein  may have posed a  threat to his neighbors  but it                                                               
has never  been proven that he  poses a threat to  U.S. security.                                                               
He becomes a threat when we attack  him, but he has never had the                                                               
ability  to attack  the  U.S.  from his  soil.  Just because  the                                                               
Administration  has repeated  that  Saddam Hussein  is linked  to                                                               
September  11  doesn't  make  it  a  truth.  There  has  been  no                                                               
substantiated evidence of that link.                                                                                            
STACEY  FRITZ from  Fairbanks  testified on  behalf  of No  Nukes                                                               
North  and  the Fairbanks  Coalition  for  Peace and  Justice  in                                                               
opposition  to  HJR  18. She  advised  the  following  resolution                                                               
speaks for 194 constituents:                                                                                                    
                     BE IT NOW RESOLVED BY                                                                                      
               THE FAIRBANKS COALITION FOR PEACE                                                                                
                          AND JUSTICE:                                                                                          
     WHEREAS the men and women of the United States                                                                             
     Armed Forces have been sent into battle in Iraq; and                                                                       
     WHEREAS the men and women of the United States                                                                             
     Armed Forces must sacrifice their personal safety in duty                                                                  
     and service to their country; and                                                                                          
     WHEREAS the men and women of the United States                                                                             
     Armed Forces have made the ultimate sacrifice; and                                                                         
     WHEREAS the men and women of the United States                                                                             
     Armed Forces must leave their families, their spouses,                                                                     
     partners and children, for an uncertain and prolonged                                                                      
     period of time; and                                                                                                        
     WHEREAS the men and women of the United States                                                                             
     Armed Forces believe that they are fighting for the                                                                        
     liberation of the Iraqi people; and                                                                                        
     WHEREAS the men and women of the United States                                                                             
     Armed Forces may be required to remain in Iraq for                                                                         
     several years to assist in the restoration of peace and                                                                    
     rebuilding of the nation's infrastructure;                                                                                 
     THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the Fairbanks                                                                                
     Coalition for Peace and Justice honors the brave men and                                                                   
     women engaged in the conflict in Iraq; and be it                                                                           
  FURTHER RESOLVED that the Fairbanks Coalition for Peace and                                                                   
  Justice will continue to work for a swift resolution to the                                                                   
     conflict so as to minimize all loss of life; and be it                                                                     
     FURTHER RESOLVED that the Fairbanks Peace Coalition will                                                                   
     steadfastly petition our nation's government to honor its                                                                  
     commitment to the men and women of the United States Armed                                                                 
     Forces to provide full health care, disability pay,                                                                        
     education and all other just and equitable benefits to our                                                                 
     veterans and their families.                                                                                               
     WHEREAS the present conflict in Iraq is neither just nor                                                                   
     legal under recognized international law; and                                                                              
     WHEREAS the President of the United States and his                                                                         
     administration did enter into this unjust and illegal                                                                      
     conflict willfully; and                                                                                                    
     WHEREAS the President of the United States and his                                                                         
     administration did undermine the diplomatic processes of                                                                   
     the United Nations by knowingly providing false documents                                                                  
     and incomplete intelligence regarding Iraq's involvement;                                                                  
     WHEREAS the President of the United States and his                                                                         
     administration promoted the unsubstantiated notion that                                                                    
     Iraq was linked to the September 11 terrorist acts; and                                                                    
     WHEREAS the President of the United States and his                                                                         
     administration did circumvent the United Nations                                                                           
     inspections and declare a so-called "preventive war" on                                                                    
Iraq when that nation offered no clear and present danger                                                                       
to the United States;                                                                                                           
BE IT HEREBY RESOLVED that the Fairbanks Coalition for                                                                          
Peace and Justice believes these actions of the President                                                                       
of the United States and his administration to be                                                                               
impeachable offenses; and be it                                                                                                 
FURTHER RESOLVED that the Fairbanks Coalition for Peace and                                                                     
Justice will join the rest of the world in demanding a full                                                                     
accounting of the loss of life, both military and civilian;                                                                     
and be it                                                                                                                       
FURTHER RESOLVED that the Fairbanks Coalition for Peace and                                                                     
Justice will work for electoral reform to provide honest                                                                        
representation of the will of the People of the United                                                                          
States; and be it                                                                                                               
FURTHER RESOLVED that the Fairbanks Coalition for Peace and                                                                     
Justice will steadfastly petition that the United States                                                                        
Congress shall adequately fund all necessary humanitarian                                                                       
aid to the people of Iraq and shall pay for the                                                                                 
reconstruction of all damage to the Iraqi infrastructure;                                                                       
and be it                                                                                                                       
FURTHER RESOLVED that the Fairbanks Coalition for Peace and                                                                     
Justice will join the rest of the world in calling upon the                                                                     
United States government to involve the United Nations                                                                          
fully in the reconstruction of Iraq's government, economy                                                                       
and infrastructure; and be it                                                                                                   
FURTHER RESOLVED that the Fairbanks Coalition for Peace and                                                                     
Justice will continue to work for peace and justice in                                                                          
Iraq, the United States and all nations, thereby ensuring                                                                       
that the men and women of the United States Armed Forces                                                                        
will never again sacrifice their lives and health in an                                                                         
unjust and illegal attack on any nation.                                                                                        
CHAIR  GARY  STEVENS asked  Ms.  Fritz  to  sent  a copy  of  the                                                               
MS. FRITZ replied she would do so.                                                                                              
RYAN TINSLEY agreed  with all the preceding  comments. Members of                                                               
19  Alaskan   communities  and  two   other  states   signed  the                                                               
resolution Ms. Fritz read. The  movement against the war consists                                                               
of over  200 nations. When  Desmond Tutu  called for a  vigil, it                                                               
happened  in two  days.  In 129  different  countries there  were                                                               
6,000 different vigils.                                                                                                         
For  the  Legislature to  put  forth  a resolution  that  divides                                                               
Alaska  and supports  the President  who is  losing a  popularity                                                               
     contest  with Saddam  Hussein is  uncalled for.  He supports  the                                                          
     troops, but not the war.                                                                                                   
     DOUGLAS LEGGETT  from Fairbanks  opposed HJR 18.  He said  he has                                                          
     been a law abiding citizen his  entire life. He loves his country                                                          
     and he  wishes to  support the  troops, but  he can't  condone an                                                          
     action that supports the U.S. breaking the law.                                                                            
     MARILYN RUSSELL from Fairbanks opposed  HJR 18. She does not give                                                          
     her consent for the resolution  as written. She agrees with those                                                          
     who  spoke previously.  She challenged  legislators  to speak  up                                                          
     against the resolution.                                                                                                    
     SIDE B                                                                                                                     
     4:20 pm                                                                                                                    
     CHAIR GARY STEVENS  announced everyone that signed  up to testify                                                          
     had  done   so.  He  asked   whether  there  were   questions  of                                                          
     Representative Lynn.                                                                                                       
     SENATOR GUESS noted the testimony  was powerful and the one point                                                          
     of agreement  was to  support the troops.  She asked  whether the                                                          
     Representative   had   given   consideration  to   amending   the                                                          
     resolution to support the troops and not include the war.                                                                  
     REPRESENTATIVE LYNN replied,                                                                                               
          I sat  here and  listened to the  testimony and  in one                                                               
          respect it  makes me  proud to be  an American  to know                                                               
          that we can hear this  type of testimony. I regret some                                                               
          of  the  ad  hominem  remarks that  were  made  and  my                                                               
          emotions,  as  I've  listened   to  this,  have  ranged                                                               
          between  anger, the  urge to  vomit, but  probably more                                                               
          accurately  sadness. Very  sad testimony  to hear  what                                                               
          all of us  have heard today because I do  think we need                                                               
          to  support  our troops.  And  I  might point  out  our                                                               
          President  is in  fact  the  Commander-in-Chief of  our                                                               
          armed services.  He also  is a  member of  the military                                                               
          and  a  military  person  knows that.  If  we  were  to                                                               
          substitute  with  Saddam  Hussein,  the  words  "Adolph                                                               
          Hitler" before World War II  started would these people                                                               
       be thinking the same thing? I hope they would not.                                                                       
          I think  the part  talking about supporting  the troops                                                               
          and  the  background  of  why the  troops  need  to  be                                                               
          supported and why  they're there is like  the left hand                                                               
          and the  right hand. We  looked at several  versions of                                                               
          this,  we've talked  about it,  we've discussed  almost                                                               
     every "Whereas" in here. I think  it would be a sad day                                                                    
     when  we   can't  support  our  troops   and  give  the                                                                    
     condemnation to Saddam Hussein that he deserves.                                                                           
     I'm  not prepared  to state  that every  action in  the                                                                    
     history of  the world  that has lead  up to  this thing                                                                    
     has   always  been   as  proper   as   it  should   be.                                                                    
     Nonetheless, we  live in  the real  world and  the real                                                                    
     world  is we  are in  fact in  danger of  international                                                                    
     terrorism as was amply demonstrated  by 9/ll. It's been                                                                    
     very fortunate we haven't had  any further acts of that                                                                    
     When you are serving in  combat it's a shallow argument                                                                    
     to say we support the  troops, but we don't support the                                                                    
     fellow  who sent  you  there. We're  all  for you  guys                                                                    
     coming home safe,  but you shouldn't be  there to begin                                                                    
     with.  If you  shouldn't be  there to  begin with,  and                                                                    
     people tell you  this. What do you think  that does for                                                                    
     a person's  morale? In addition  to bombs  and bullets,                                                                    
     the most important things to  winning any kind of armed                                                                    
     conflict  is  your  morale....   When  you  attack  the                                                                    
     Commander-in-Chief,   who  also   happens  to   be  the                                                                    
     President  of the  United States,  you are  attacking a                                                                    
     troop and that's the military viewpoint.                                                                                   
     All these people talk today,  and God bless their right                                                                    
     to be able to do that.  I don't know how many people we                                                                    
     had  at the  rally the  other  day. It's  too bad  that                                                                    
     these folks were not  here testifying. They're probably                                                                    
     out working  for a  living and I  urge your  support of                                                                    
     it. No resolution is perfect; I think this works.                                                                          
CHAIR GARY STEVENS called for further questions or comments.                                                                    
SENATOR COWDERY noted all 40 members of the House supported this                                                                
He made a motion to move SCS CSHJR 18 (STA) and zero fiscal note                                                                
from committee. There being no objection, it was so ordered.                                                                    
CHAIR GARY STEVENS reminded everyone the resolution would move                                                                  
to the Senate floor. He encouraged everyone who participated to                                                                 
contact his or her Senator.                                                                                                     
CHAIR GARY STEVENS adjourned the meeting at 5:00 pm.                                                                            

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