As the Alaska Redistricting Board prepares to consider whether to change the map used in last year’s state legislative elections, Gov. Mike Dunleavy has reappointed Alaska Policy Forum CEO Bethany Marcum to the board.
Marcum, one of the board’s original five members, resigned from the board to take a seat on the University of Alaska Board of Regents, but the state Legislature on Tuesday declined to confirm her for the job.
One day later, Dunleavy reappointed Marcum to the seat she had left. The governor’s deputy communications director, Jeff Turner, said Dunleavy appointed her for the same reasons he appointed her in the first place.
“Bethany Marcum is a long time Alaskan with decades of experience in public policy,” Turner said by email.
House Minority Leader Calvin Schrage, I-Anchorage, said he sees the pick “as a non-issue.”
“Given the results of yesterday, it seems more than appropriate that she would be reappointed to the redistricting board to continue their work,” Schrage said.
Marcum served as an aide to Dunleavy when he was a state senator. And she currently heads the Alaska Policy Forum, a nonprofit that promotes conservative policies.
Last year, the Alaska Supreme Court concluded that Marcum and two other Republicans on the redistricting board illegally drew the lines of legislative districts to favor Republican candidates.
The court threw out some of the board’s work in favor of a different map, which was then used in last year’s legislative elections.
The court concluded that map could be revised after the election, and the redistricting board is slated to meet at 1 p.m. Monday in Anchorage to determine whether it will make further revisions or whether it will let the map stand for future elections.
If no changes are made, the current legislative map will remain in place through the 2030 election season.
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