GOP could lose Alaska Senate seat with split vote if Senator Lisa Murkowski runsPolitics Sunday, September 12th, 2010
Alaska has long been a solid GOP strong hold, but could fall to the Democrats in November if Senator Lisa Murkowski decides to run as either a write in candidate or shows up on the ballot as the Libertarian Party’s candidate.
Sen. Murkowski lost a very tight primary election to Tea Party Express candidate Joe Millar this past August by a mere 2,013 votes. Sen. Murkowski’s seniority would be a loss for Alaska residence, but many voters there felt she was too liberal and that they wanted a candidate that would fight the big government expansion that has taken place under the Obama Administration.
“We trust Sen. Murkowski will keep her word that she and Joe gave four days before the election to honor the will of the electorate,” said Miller’s campaign spokesman Randy DeSoto. “Her campaign manager also spoke with one of our staff members about how important it would be to come together after the primary, so the Republicans would have a unified front.”
However Murkowski is seriously considering reneging on that deal as she is currently in negotiating with Libertarian Party officials to back her as their candidate and if that fails, she is also considering allowing herself to be a writ-in candidate.
Many of Senator Murkowski’s supporter’s are happy about the possibilities and someone even started a Facebook page (though it’s not clear if the page was started by a fan or Sen. Murkowski herself), “Write-in Lisa Murkowski for Senator in November,” which has gained more than 1,400 backers thus far.
This past Thursday 10 local GOP officials who signed a letter to Ms. Murkowski Thursday urging her not to run including bank executive Michael Dunton who said “Good Lord, I can’t think of a bigger train wreck than that.”
Senator Murkowski though doesn’t believe that her running as a write-in candidate would split the Republic vote. She stated on the new Facebook page “Ok folks, let’s talk about the word on the street…splitting the republican vote. Writing-in Lisa is NOT intended to do that. We need all the people who did AND did not vote in the primaries. We also need democrats, and there are plenty of them out there who will vote for Lisa.”
While Senator Murkowski’s “intent” may not be to split the vote history has proven that it will do just that. If Senator Murkowski runs, whether as a Libertarian candidate or a write-in, Alaska’s next new senator could very well be Democrat Scott McAdams.
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