The new Senate minority leader says his caucus wants to be part of the oil tax debate.
In a floor speech Tuesday, Senator Johnny Ellis asked the majority to take the minority up on its ideas on how to increase oil production. He said his colleagues can expect a civil tone and "principled positions" from his caucus.
Ellis and members of his caucus had been part of a bipartisan majority that had ruled the Senate the past several years. The GOP seized control of the chamber after last fall's elections.
Ellis was chosen to lead the five-member Democratic minority this session. Senator Hollis French is expected to take over the role next year.
Ellis said his caucus wants to partner with oil companies but wants a good deal for Alaska.