Dan S. Sullivan, one of several Republican candidates in the running for the U.S. Senate, is being asked to remove pictures from his advertisements after a member of the Anchorage Assembly took issue with her face being used in his campaign.
Sullivan, the previous Commissioner of the Alaska Department of Natural Resources and a former Alaska Attorney General, used a picture of himself and assembly member Elvi Gray-Jackson in campaign flyers and television commercials at a 2010 rally against domestic violence.
The image shows the two walking side by side behind a “Choose Respect” banner.
Members of the public, press and other politicians -- including Republican Sen. Lisa Murkowski -- can also be seen in the image.
In a Monday letter to Sullivan’s campaign, Gray-Jackson formally asked Sullivan to remove the picture from his campaign materials. “The use of my image implies an endorsement of your candidacy,” Gray-Jackson wrote.
She added that she does not, in fact, support Sullivan’s senate bid, citing women’s issues and her pro-choice stance on abortion that “strongly disagree” with Sullivan’s policies.
Gray-Jackson said she had been getting phone calls and emails “for about two weeks” about her appearance in the ads. “It’s my face,” she said Monday. “I support women’s rights, and I don’t want anyone to think otherwise.”
Gray-Jackson said she featured the image on her own social media website but removed it herself within the last two weeks.
Mike Anderson, a spokesman for Sullivan’s campaign, said they will not be removing the picture from their campaign materials.
In a statement, Anderson wrote that Sullivan "was honored to have worked and marched with so many of Alaska’s leaders--Republicans and Democrats--on [the "Choose Respect"] bipartisan initiative."
Anderson noted that "the picture depicted was of the original march in Anchorage" where Sullivan and many hundreds more marched "in unity to condemn domestic violence."