With the news that Eddie Burke is running for Lt. Governor in Alaska and the current Lt. Governor, Craig Campbell withdrew from the race, I thought it might be interesting to take a look at the other man campaigning for the job.
Jay Ramras is a man Governor Palin supporters will no doubt recognize the name of. Remember, he was the guy that made the famous misogynistic "V bomb" comment about Governor Palin back in 2008. A stupid statement from him that just underscored the fact that Jay's brain has a tendency to reside in the gutter at times.
This is also the guy that had the nerve to use (and misuse) his Judiciary Committee Chairmanship to insinuate that Governor Palin was 'unethical' for wearing an arctic cat jacket in cold weather . Something she was accused of by a certain ankle-biting "Official Alaskan DNC blogger," and later cleared for by the state ethics panel. During the confirmation hearing of Wayne Anthony Ross, Ramras said "We have a Governor who is provocative in a lot of her actions. Recently it comes to mind when she was in Fairbanks for the finish line for the Iron Dog she was wearing Arctic Cat gear...Arctic Cat letters..."
Jay Ramras gives new meaning to the term 'blatant hypocrite.' He grandstands, on the record over a coat with a logo on it yet buys loads of commercial airtime on local Alaska television to sell his lodge, "Pikes Landing" in ads staring...himself. All at the same time he is running for Lt. Governor of the state.
Take a look...
Then there's this one where he meshes both the lodge and his political agenda
These persistent advertisements aired on local Alaskan television, during an election should raise some concerns. Do the Pikes Landing commercials constitute political use of airtime or not? Judging by the second ad I posted here, it does appear so. Jay is obviously selling his political agenda (complete with signage), on the property of his lodge but not advertising the lodge itself. To me, that is a political ad, not an ad aimed at selling guest rooms and hydroponic vegetables.
Fellow AGIA opponent, Ralph Samuels used this argument against Sean Parnell earlier this year when he, as the governor had filmed a commercial for a nonprofit advocating against domestic violence. From ADN:
The Samuels campaign wrote a letter Friday to Parnell's campaign manager, Michelle Toohey, complaining about the ad and saying KTUU Channel 2 pulled it from broadcast after hearing Samuels' concerns. The Samuels campaign wants the ad scrubbed from any other stations as well.
"While this is an important message for Alaskans, using Governor Parnell, a declared candidate for election in a contested GOP primary, as a television spokesman raises serious questions about whether these ads constitute a political use of television airtime," the Samuels campaign wrote in a letter Friday to Toohey.
The Samuels campaign argued the ad could represent "an improper in-kind contribution" to Parnell by the Alaska Network on Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault. Samuels' campaign manager, Suzanne Armstrong, also cited the fact the group receives government grants and said it's not allowed to advocate for a candidate as a nonprofit.
I also like all of the photos on Jay's campaign website. They just so happen to be photos of him at "Pikes Landing."
Let us not forget the great investigative articles Rebecca Mansour wrote for "Conservatives for Palin" about Jay shifting his oil stocks, under less than ethical conditions. Back in July of 2009, she provides us with some interesting "facts."
FACT: Ramras purchased $172,388 worth of shares in BP on August 18, 2008.
FACT: Ramras has received large campaign donations from BP, ConocoPhillips, and Denali lobbyist Richard Solie, among others.
FACT: After buying his large equity position, Ramras championed HCR 12 which sought to scuttle AGIA. Notably, Ramras claimed he introduced this legislation “because the economics have changed.” Hmmm... certainly his “economics” changed. BP’s stock went up .68 on the day he introduced HCR 12. At no time did Ramras disclose on his website or press announcement his large stake in BP.
FACT: If Ramras succeeds in tanking AGIA, the Denali pipeline project will be the only game in town. If AGIA lives, then Denali will die (or merge with the Exxon/TransCanada pipeline). Don’t take our word for it: Look at what stock and industry analysts have to say about it.
FACT: Ramras dissembled (and stammered and stuttered) on the Bob and Mark Show when he claimed he disclosed his conflict of interest “on the floor” and “in the committee.” There is no record of any such disclosure. But at least Ramras recognizes that he has a conflict of interest.
FACT: On the day this story broke, Ramras bought $135,000 of TransCanada stock. Maybe he read my article and Morningstar’s prediction that BP will “likely join with Exxon” and build only one pipeline. From an economics perspective, building a massive gas pipeline is probably much like being the Highlander: “There can be only one.” Now, Ramras will profit handsomely no matter if AGIA succeeds, BP succeeds, or there is a joint venture. Now he has a conflict of interest in everything. Ramras has violated the cardinal rule of public service: public office is not for personal profit.
FACT: Though Ramras claimed he was buying BP to short it as a “day trader,” he has held on to it for almost a year. Day traders, which Ramras claims to be, buy and sell stocks... in a day, hence the name “day” trader. He has, in fact, taken a long term position. He could have sold the stock long before the Lehman Brothers collapse in September and still have made a profit. He didn't. I doubt he ever intended to.
Another "fact" is that Jay Ramras' own "ethics" don't match his grandstanding or his rhetoric. Politicians like him seem to be fully entrenched within Alaska's political structure, and sadly withing the entire country's. This man is no public servant if all he was ever concerned about was his own stock portfolio and getting his face in the news for anti-Palin showboating.
Governor Palin tried very hard to clean up her own party and to clean up politics in Alaska during her tenure. Despite being likened to Joseph McCarthy by Jay Ramras himself, she could only do so much. People like Jay Ramras are still around and actually looking to upgrade their positions of power.
Then again, maybe Jay Ramras is just looking to add some upgrades to the Pikes Landing lodge?