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Sullivan Remains Silent on VAWA’s “Alaska Exclusion”

Refuses to Back Additional Protections for Alaska Native and Rural Communities


CONTACT: Max Croes907-570-2065

ANCHORAGE- Dan Sullivan refuses to give his full backing to the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) while continuing to run TV and radio ads claiming a record of working to stop sexual assault and domestic violence.

Sullivan continues to remain silent on the “Alaska exclusion” and the efforts of Senators Begich and Murkowski to provide tribes authority to enforce laws against sexual assault or domestic violence.

Previously, when asked in an interview if he would support the reauthorization of VAWA - a historic, bipartisan bill that has given law enforcement essential tools to help reduce domestic violence across Alaska - Sullivan stumbled and said he’d have to “read the bill.” Senator Lisa Murkowski and Congressman Don Young both voted in favor of the bill in 2013.

Sullivan’s inability to answer questions from Alaskans has already gathered concern from local media outlets.

“Domestic violence in Alaska is occurring at alarmingly high rates - with many worried about how to protect their families, yet Dan Sullivan still refuses to say whether he supports the most central federal law in history to combatting sexual assault and domestic abuse, especially in rural Alaska. Alaskans deserve better than a politician who refuses to answer questions about issues important to Alaska’s tribes and rural communities,” said Susanne Fleek-Green, Campaign Manager for Alaskans for Begich.

Sullivan has established an aggressively anti-rural Alaska and anti-Alaska Native record that includes re-opening the Katie John case, directly undermining subsistence rights for Alaska Natives. Sullivan also pursued the Kaltag court case, which involved a one year old child who was removed from her parents by the Kaltag tribe after she was found to be in a dangerous situation. Sullivan sued the Kaltag tribe in a move that undermined tribal sovereignty and has been called “a slap in the face.”