According to a court filing, Alaska Governor Mike Dunleavy has agreed, in principle, to settle a lawsuit brought by two psychiatrists who said they were wrongfully fired when Dunleavy took office.
Anthony Blanford and John Bellville both worked at the Alaska Psychiatric Institute, and declined to submit resignation letters requested in 2018 by the chair of Dunleavy’s transition team —ousted gubernatorial chief of staff, former Republican Tea Party Chair and behind-the-scenes operative Tuckerman Babcock.
The court filing states that the involved parties have reached an agreement to resolve remaining issues for litigation which will lead to a voluntary dismissal and the appeal currently in front of the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. The filing states that the parties expect to file their respective requests for dismissal within the next thirty days.
Former Assistant Attorney General Libby Bakalar, a frequent target of the pro-Dunleavy Must Read Alaska blog, had filed a similar lawsuit alleging that her First Amendment right to freedom of speech was violated because she was fired for her political beliefs and for maintaining a political blog while employed as an attorney in the Alaska Department of Law.
Bakalar runs the popular “One Hot Mess” blog.
In response to the news that Dunleavy was settling the Blanford case, Bakalar said on Twitter today that the State of Alaska had received a bad ruling on the merits of several of their legal claims, and likely settled remaining damages issues.
“I’m still awaiting an order in my case on the merits of my similar but not identical claims,” wrote Bakalar.
The Blanford lawsuit was brought against Dunleavy, Babcock and the state.
The “winning” of the Dunleavy administration continues.