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Senate candidates slow to take a stand

Alaska is home to more than 70,000 disabled adults, but those voters have no obvious champion among the leading contenders in the U.S. Senate race.

Neither do the homeless or their advocates. And gay voters have only a long-shot candidate to voice support of same-sex civil marriages.

For the most part, candidates are treading lightly around unpopular or divisive issues, focusing their official Web sites on catchphrases like energy development, veterans affairs and gun rights. They talk about their commitment to health care and social issues, without directly addressing disabled or homeless constituents.

"Alaskans with disabilities are a significant voting bloc, and they're not getting adequate attention from the U.S. Senate candidates," said Kelly Donnelly with the Center for Human Development at the University of Alaska Anchorage. "It reflects our society at large, which still looks at the disabled as a segregated population."

More here.

September 12, 2004 in advocacy, alaska, politics | Permalink