This editorial appeared in The Anchorage Daily News.
Gov. Sarah Palin has the right to nominate a Juneau Democrat to fill the state Senate seat vacated when Sen. Kim Elton, D-Juneau, left in mid-term to take an Obama administration job. That's state law. But the law also says the appointment has to be ratified by a majority of the Senate Democrats.
The two sides have to work together to find someone agreeable to both. There's certainly a big question about whether Palin's choice meets that criterion.
Gov. Palin chose legislative aide Tim Grussendorf, who was registered as a Republican until weeks ago. His registration as a Republican was curious, since he previously ran for state House as a Democrat and is the son of former Democratic House speaker Ben Grussendorf.
Given Tim Grussendorf's strange history with his party registration, Gov. Palin has given Senate Democrats ample reason to reject the nominee. Juneau Democratic Party officials are urging them to reject the choice.
Grussendorf is chief of staff for Sen. Lyman Hoffman, a Democrat. Grussendorf changed his registration to Republican in 2006. He said he didn't intend to register Republican; he meant to switch from Democrat to undeclared so he could vote in the Republican primary. He said he believed he had registered as undeclared and only learned differently recently when he learned he couldn't be considered for the Elton opening because he was Republican. Then he switched back to Democrat.
Does a person with such a tentative attachment to his party deserve to be appointed to a Democratic Senate seat? That's questionable.
To read the complete editorial, visit The Anchorage Daily News.