Former Alaskan US Senator Mike Gravel spoke Thursday night at UAA, sponsored by the journalism department and Alaska Native Studies and there was a connection with the College of Business and Public Policy as well.
Gravel was elected in 1968 and served until 1981. We came right on time and the auditorium was full and we got seats in the very back row. This was not a good decision as they did not use miss, and as good as the acoustics are in that room, I didn't hear enough of each sentence to write too much here with confidence. I would guess the average age in the room was around 70 and many were people who knew and/or worked with Gravel.
As one observer said afterward, "I don't remember things being quite as good as he does, but it's probably good to be able to remember your life rosier than it was."
Two points I heard clearly enough to report were:
1. When Clinton is president the Republicans will begin impeachment hearings that will continue through her four years.
I've been telling friends that I thought the hatred and disrespect shown our first black president will be nothing compare to the invective our first female president will receive. So this one seems pretty likely.
2. He began by telling us how he got to Alaska. Basically, he'd decided he wanted to be a politician and he did research on where the best states to get elected would be. His choices narrowed down to Alaska and New Mexico. Alaska wasn't even a state yet, but he was sure it would be soon.