The Full Wiki

Alaska Senate: Wikis


Note: Many of our articles have direct quotes from sources you can cite, within the Wikipedia article! This article doesn't yet, but we're working on it! See more info or our list of citable articles.


From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Alaska Senate
Type Upper house
President of the Senate Gary Stevens, (R)
since November 6, 2008
Majority Leader Johnny Ellis, (D)
since January 20, 2008
Minority Leader Con Bunde, (R)
since 2008
Members 20
Political groups Democratic Party
Republican Party
Last election November 4, 2008
Meeting place
Senate Chamber, Alaska.jpg
Senate Chamber,
Alaska State Capitol, Juneau, AK, USA

The Alaska Senate is the upper house in the Alaska Legislature, the state legislature of the U.S. state of Alaska. The Senate consists of twenty members, each of whom represents an equal amount of districts with populations of about 31,347 people (2000 figures). Senators serve four-year terms, without term limits. Half of the Alaska Senate is up for re-election every two years. With just twenty senators, the Alaska Senate is the smallest upper house legislative chamber in the United States.

Like other upper houses of state and territorial legislatures and the federal Senate, the Senate can confirm or reject gubernatorial appointments to the state cabinet, commissions and boards.

The Senate convenes at the State Capitol in Juneau.


Current composition

Affiliation Party
(Shading indicates majority caucus)
Coalition Non-coalition
Democratic Republican Vacant
End of previous legislature 9 6 5 20 0
Begin 10 6 4 20 0
March 2, 2009[1] 9 19 1
April 19, 2009[2] 10 20 0
September 2009[3] 3 19 1
October 27, 2009[4] 4 20 0
Latest voting share 80.0% 20.0%


The President of the Senate presides over the body, appointing members to all of the Senate's committees and joint committees, and may create other committees and subcommittees if desired. Unlike many other states, the Lieutenant Governor of Alaska does not preside over the Senate. Instead, the Lieutenant Governor oversees the Alaska Division of Elections, fulfilling the role of Secretary of State. Only two other states, Hawaii and Utah, have similar constitutional arrangements for their lieutenant governors. The other partisan Senate leadership positions, such as the Majority and Minority leaders, are (usually) elected by their respective party caucuses to head their parties in the chamber.

Current leadership

Position Name Party Residence District
President of the Senate Gary Stevens Republican-Coalition Kodiak R
Majority Leader Johnny Ellis Democratic-Coalition Anchorage L
Minority Leader Con Bunde Republican Anchorage P

Republican split

Shortly after the 2006 November election, a bi-partisan coalition was announced between all nine senate Democrats and six senate Republicans.[6] Democrats chaired the Judiciary, Health, Education, & Social Services, Labor and Commerce, Community and Regional Affairs, and Transportation Committees, as well as co-chair the powerful Finance Committee. The senate Republicans in the coalition also had a co-chair for the Finance Committee (the minority Republicans were given only one seat on the committee), and chair the State Affairs, Resources, and Rules Committees.[7]

Because of the Republican split, the Democrats controlled a majority of committee chairmanships while Republicans in the governing coalition chaired the others. In the beginning, the majority leader was a Republican who has joined the bi-partisan coalition, and the minority leader was head of the five-member Republican organization. Hence, all three listed officers of the body were Republicans, as different aspects are in the majority (with the chamber-wide minority Democrats) while others are in the official minority. Later on in the session a Democrat in the coalition took over as majority leader.

The split was largely viewed as over the senate presidency. The minority leader was the Republicans' suspected initial choice for Senate President.[7] The coalition commanded three quarters of the body.

A similar move to create a coalition was made in the 24th Legislature, on the House side, without success.

After 2008 elections

After the 2008 elections, Senate Democrats picked up a seat, holding half of the districts. They joined with 6 Senate Republicans to form a new coalition.[8]

Members of the 26th Senate

Alaska State Senate
26th Alaska Legislature, 2009-2010[9]
District Name Party Location Term Up
A Stedman, BertBert Stedman Rep-Coalition Sitka 2012
B Egan, DennisDennis Egan Dem-Coalition Juneau 2010
C Kookesh, AlbertAlbert Kookesh Dem-Coalition Angoon 2012
D Thomas, JoeJoe Thomas Dem-Coalition Fairbanks 2010
E Paskvan, JoeJoe Paskvan Dem-Coalition Fairbanks 2012
F Coghill Jr., JohnJohn Coghill Jr. Republican North Pole 2010
G Menard, LindaLinda Menard Rep-Coalition Mat-Su Valley 2012
H Huggins, CharlieCharlie Huggins Rep-Coalition Wasilla 2010
I Dyson, FredFred Dyson Republican Eagle River 2012
J Wielechowski, BillBill Wielechowski Dem-Coalition Anchorage 2010
K Davis, BettyeBettye Davis Dem-Coalition Anchorage 2012
L Ellis, JohnnyJohnny Ellis Dem-Coalition Anchorage 2010
M French, HollisHollis French Dem-Coalition Anchorage 2012
N McGuire, LesilLesil McGuire Rep-Coalition Anchorage 2010
O Meyer, KevinKevin Meyer Rep-Coalition Anchorage 2012
P Bunde, ConCon Bunde Republican Anchorage 2010
Q Wagoner, ThomasThomas Wagoner Republican Kenai 2012
R Stevens, GaryGary Stevens Rep-Coalition Kodiak 2010
S Hoffman, LymanLyman Hoffman Dem-Coalition Bethel 2010
T Olson, DonaldDonald Olson Dem-Coalition Nome 2012

See also


  1. ^ Democrat Kim Elton (District B) resigned to become director of Alaska Affairs for the United States Department of the Interior [1].
  2. ^ Democrat Dennis Egan appointed to succeed Elton.
  3. ^ Republican Gene Therriault (District F) resigned to take a position in Gov. Sean Parnell's administration.
  4. ^ Republican John Coghill appointed to succeed Therriault.
  5. ^ Alaska State Legislature. (2008-22-08). [2] Retrieved on 2008-22-08.
  6. ^
  7. ^ a b
  8. ^ Stevens, Chenault to lead Senate, House Don Hunter. November 7, 2008. Anchorage Daily News.
  9. ^ Alaska Division of Elections. (2006-11-07). "State of Alaska - 2008 General Election: November 4, 2008, Official Results." Retrieved on 2009-02-01.

External links


Got something to say? Make a comment.
Your name
Your email address