Alaska Journalists Publish ‘Crude Awakening’

When Alaska journalists Tony Hopfinger and Amanda Coyne started covering the corruption probe, it didn’t take them long to see the potential for a book. The scandal began with an oil tax vote in the state legislature in 2006. Along the way, Ted Stevens lost his Senate seat, state lawmakers went to prison and Sarah Palin rose to become a national celebrity.

Earlier this month, “Crude Awakening; Money, Mavericks and Mayhem in Alaska” was published. I sat down with the husband and wife team to talk about the twists and turns of the corruption investigation and the political fallout in the state.

Hopfinger says it tells the story of oil and Alaska politics over the last 40 years.

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Lori Townsend is the news director and senior host for Alaska Public Media. You can send her news tips and program ideas for Talk of Alaska and Alaska Insight at or call 907-550-8452.

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