Governor speaks on state issues

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FAIRBANKS, Alaska - The National Governors Association Winter Conference is taking place at Washington DC right now, and Alaska Governor Bill Walker is in attendance.
Our DC Bureau correspondent, Alana Austin, caught up with Governor Walker to hear about a bipartisan health care plan, as well as offshore drilling
Alana Austin; Reporting>>: "Governor, talk to us about you bipartisan health care plan; how feasible is it to get that threw in these divided times?"
Gov. Bill Walker; (I) Alaska>>: "Well, first of all, you've, five governors have come together, you know, two republicans, two democrats, to provide some alternatives to the health care solution that sort of got balled-up in partisan politics; time to advance that, to fix health care. In order to fix health care in Alaska we really need to fix for the entire country in some respect because we are sometimes the victims of what happens in Washington."
Alana Austin; Reporting>>: "You're an Independent, I think you have a unique perspective here. Talk a little bit about that.
Gov. Bill Walker; (I) Alaska>>: "Well, I am able as an independent, it's not like I am trying to drag somebody over to my side of aisle; I don't have an aisle. So, because of that I can reach out to the other Governors as I have to sort of to bring this effort into fruition.
Alana Austin; Reporting>>: "What are some of the top issues affecting Alaskans this weekend?"
Gov. Bill Walker; (I) Alaska>>: "Well certainly the opioid issue. We are one the first states if not the first that issued a declaration of disaster in crisis, and other states have, actually President Trump did as well. I will share with what we are doing in Alaska, and I will learn what other states, hopefully kicks back some tools in the tool box to address the crisis we're in."
Alana Austin; Reporting>>: "Where are we at this point with offshore drilling? Of course this is a major debate and where do you think that this is going to end up going?"
Gov. Bill Walker; (I) Alaska>>: "Well, I met with Secretary Zinke yesterday and we talked about that a bit. We have asked that certain areas of Alaska are off limits for offshore drilling, certainly the Bristol Bay area. We're really focused on the Beaufort Sea, the Chukchi, and the lower Cook Inlet."
Alana Austin; Reporting>>: "Of course this is an election year, voters are going to be heading to the polls, give us your pitch, why should voters reelect you?"
Gov. Bill Walker; (I) Alaska>>: "Well, I have had to make some tough decisions. When you lose 80% of your income you have to make some difficult decisions, some decisions that could have been made years ago. You play the hand you're dealt. I've been dealt a pretty challenging hand, and I've played it for the long game for the best interest of Alaska, not necessarily the best interest of myself. We hope the legislature will be able to close out the fiscal situation so we can have decades of healthy financial situations rather than staying in the deficit we're in right now."
Alana Austin; Reporting>>: "Governor Walker, thank you so much for your time. I'm Alana Austin here at the JW Marriot for the National Governors Association Conference, back to you."