The Murkowski Betrayal

Thomas Lifson
Senator Lisa Murkowski has placed personal ambition and sheer pique above party and principle in announcing a write-in campaign for Senate in Alaska, thereby earning the eternal enmity of conservatives throughout the United States. The question is not whether she will win (she won't, because write-in campaigns are nearly impossible), but whether she will succeed in throwing the election to Democrat Scott McAdams, the mayor of Sitka, who is the Democratic nominee.

It is imperative for the GOP and conservatives throughout the country to throw their support -- moral and financial -- behind Joe Miller, who won the primary. The their credit, the GOP leadership has already come down strongly in support of Miller.

Minority Leader
Mitch McConnell:

"Senate Republicans informed Lisa Murkowski that we will respect the will of the voters in Alaska and support the Republican nominee, Joe Miller.  I informed her that by choosing to run a campaign against the Republican nominee, she no longer has my support for serving in any leadership roles, and I have accepted her letter of resignation from Senate leadership. Lisa has served her state and our party with distinction, but Republicans acknowledge the decision Alaskans made and join them in support of the Republican nominee, Joe Miller-the next Senator for Alaska."

Sen. John Cornyn, head of the NRSC:

"Republican primary voters spoke when they nominated Joe Miller in Alaska, and I am deeply disappointed in Senator Lisa Murkowski's decision to ignore that clear message and wage a write-in candidacy. The NRSC stands firmly behind Joe Miller's nomination, and we will ensure that he has all of the resources that he needs in order to win this November."

Murkowski reportedly has $1 million in campaign funds left over from her primary race, a substantial sum for a state with relatively inexpensive media markets. She comes from a political family with many ties and supporters in the state. Her father, Frank Murkowski, appointed her to her Senate seat 8 years ago, when he left it to assume the governorship. The political machine of the Murkowskis was opposed by reformer Sarah Palin, when she ran for and won the governorship.

Palin's support for the Miller primary challenge was reckoned by many observers to be part of an ongoing war between Palin and the Murkowskis (and their allies in the Alaska GOP), closely related to the housecleaning of corruption undertaken by Palin when she became governor.

Joe Miller spoke with National Review last night, following the Murkowski announcement:

Miller says Murkowski's move "should shock anyone with integrity," calling it another example of how her "lifeblood is power." She has, he says, a "disconnection from reality."

"[Murkowski] is going back on her word," Miller continues. "She gave her word several days before the primary that she would respect the primary outcome."

"This is a write-in campaign for a person named Lisa Murkowski," Miller says. "We are not terribly concerned about it. It doesn't change our approach. Our calculus is that we win. It is now Joe Millerversus the liberals."

Miller agrees with Sarah Palin, who earlier tonight in Iowa predicted that Murkowski's effort will be "futile." "It will end in failure," Miller says. "She is going to throw a lot of money away just to mud sling."

Senator Murkowski is conducting herself in a shameful manner, in time when the stakes couldn't be higher. She would be well advised to consider the fate of Senator Arlen Specter, another faithless Republican solon, who put personal ambition about party loyalty and principle. She should look beyond what will be a fruitless campaign to the enmity she will face from conservatives and Republicans for the rest of her days, and reverse her decision.

Update: Murkowski is already shamelessly hitting up lobbyists for money.

Update: From New Hampshire's Ovide Lamontagne, narrowly defeated in the Senatorial primary, a lesson for Lisa in graciousness, sent by email: (hat tip: Mark J. Fitzgibbons)

Ovide Lamontagne Speech Regarding U.S. Senate Primary Results in NH

Click here to watch Ovide's message from the State House in Concord, today.

Good afternoon. I think I recognize some of you from last nights party. What a party! And what a campaign this has been. This has been a classic New Hampshire campaign, one for the ages that well be talking about for a long time to come.

I believe that in our American Republic, the people are the sovereign they are the king -- and government is their subject. Well, the people of NH have spoken and they have ruled. While I am disappointed with the result, I humbly accept their verdict and I would ask you to join me in doing the same.

Since the Secretary of State released his final election results earlier this afternoon, a number of our supporters have expressed their strong opinion that I ask for a recount. This is message is meant directly for my supporters from around the State of New Hampshire. I have always promised to tell you the truth, even when it hurts, or when it isnt convenient.

In my professional life I have been involved in a number of recounts. I have reviewed the numbers and have spoken directly with Secretary of State Gardner and he has assured me that he sees no irregularities in the manner with which the results were reported to him. You know me and you know that Im a fighter, but I take on those fights which have a probability of success. In this case, I believe that it is in our best interests to accept the results of the election as finalized by the Secretary of State. Accordingly, I will not be seeking a recount. But I will remain a fighter for you.

A few minutes ago I spoke with Kelly Ayotte and congratulated her on her Primary victory. I have not had a chance to speak with Jim Bender or Bill Binnie, but would like to acknowledge here my gratitude to them for their well-run campaigns.

Words cannot express my gratitude for our campaign staff, for our friends and thousands of supporters and voters who brought us so close to victory yesterday. Against all odds, they contributed their time, talent and their vote in support of our campaign to advance a new conservative agenda -- and they did so in support of a candidate with the toughest name in New Hampshire politics! And I am grateful for that. And together with the help of the Union Leader which continues to demonstrate its considerable impact particularly in a Republican primary and conservative talk show host, Laura Ingraham, who was with us from the beginning, we were able to run a traditional and historic New Hampshire race for the ages.

Going into this campaign, I knew full-well that victory would be difficult. But we set out with a creative plan to win in September and November. And as you saw by this afternoons photo finish, we came very, very close. I also knew that waging this campaign would make a difference - and with the help of thousands of NH citizens, I believe we did make a difference!

We did so by staying on a positive, issue-oriented conservative message based on the core principles of freedom and liberty. We did so with the considerable support of men and women throughout the State of New Hampshire at the grassroots level in every county and every town. And we did so by conducting ourselves with dignity and decorum and we can and should all hold our heads high.

"I have said from the beginning that our nation is in crisis and we are in desperate need of conservative leadership in Washington. That remains true, so I will continue to be an advocate for conservative principles to prevail in the November election. During the campaign, you heard me talk about Ovides Oath my 15 point pledge to deliver conservative reform to Washington. Today, Im making another pledge to you. Republicans, working together with like minded Independents and Democrats will defeat Paul Hodes in November!

With that said, we must move quickly to transition into the general election in support of our Partys nominee, Kelly Ayotte, and it is my intention to do just that. I ask our supporters to join me and do the same today.

Thank you for your support and the kindness you have shown me and my family during this past year. God bless you, God bless America and God bless the great state of New Hampshire!



 
Senator Lisa Murkowski has placed personal ambition and sheer pique above party and principle in announcing a write-in campaign for Senate in Alaska, thereby earning the eternal enmity of conservatives throughout the United States. The question is not whether she will win (she won't, because write-in campaigns are nearly impossible), but whether she will succeed in throwing the election to Democrat Scott McAdams, the mayor of Sitka, who is the Democratic nominee.

It is imperative for the GOP and conservatives throughout the country to throw their support -- moral and financial -- behind Joe Miller, who won the primary. The their credit, the GOP leadership has already come down strongly in support of Miller.

Minority Leader
Mitch McConnell:

"Senate Republicans informed Lisa Murkowski that we will respect the will of the voters in Alaska and support the Republican nominee, Joe Miller.  I informed her that by choosing to run a campaign against the Republican nominee, she no longer has my support for serving in any leadership roles, and I have accepted her letter of resignation from Senate leadership. Lisa has served her state and our party with distinction, but Republicans acknowledge the decision Alaskans made and join them in support of the Republican nominee, Joe Miller-the next Senator for Alaska."

Sen. John Cornyn, head of the NRSC:

"Republican primary voters spoke when they nominated Joe Miller in Alaska, and I am deeply disappointed in Senator Lisa Murkowski's decision to ignore that clear message and wage a write-in candidacy. The NRSC stands firmly behind Joe Miller's nomination, and we will ensure that he has all of the resources that he needs in order to win this November."

Murkowski reportedly has $1 million in campaign funds left over from her primary race, a substantial sum for a state with relatively inexpensive media markets. She comes from a political family with many ties and supporters in the state. Her father, Frank Murkowski, appointed her to her Senate seat 8 years ago, when he left it to assume the governorship. The political machine of the Murkowskis was opposed by reformer Sarah Palin, when she ran for and won the governorship.

Palin's support for the Miller primary challenge was reckoned by many observers to be part of an ongoing war between Palin and the Murkowskis (and their allies in the Alaska GOP), closely related to the housecleaning of corruption undertaken by Palin when she became governor.

Joe Miller spoke with National Review last night, following the Murkowski announcement:

Miller says Murkowski's move "should shock anyone with integrity," calling it another example of how her "lifeblood is power." She has, he says, a "disconnection from reality."

"[Murkowski] is going back on her word," Miller continues. "She gave her word several days before the primary that she would respect the primary outcome."

"This is a write-in campaign for a person named Lisa Murkowski," Miller says. "We are not terribly concerned about it. It doesn't change our approach. Our calculus is that we win. It is now Joe Millerversus the liberals."

Miller agrees with Sarah Palin, who earlier tonight in Iowa predicted that Murkowski's effort will be "futile." "It will end in failure," Miller says. "She is going to throw a lot of money away just to mud sling."

Senator Murkowski is conducting herself in a shameful manner, in time when the stakes couldn't be higher. She would be well advised to consider the fate of Senator Arlen Specter, another faithless Republican solon, who put personal ambition about party loyalty and principle. She should look beyond what will be a fruitless campaign to the enmity she will face from conservatives and Republicans for the rest of her days, and reverse her decision.

Update: Murkowski is already shamelessly hitting up lobbyists for money.

Update: From New Hampshire's Ovide Lamontagne, narrowly defeated in the Senatorial primary, a lesson for Lisa in graciousness, sent by email: (hat tip: Mark J. Fitzgibbons)

Ovide Lamontagne Speech Regarding U.S. Senate Primary Results in NH

Click here to watch Ovide's message from the State House in Concord, today.

Good afternoon. I think I recognize some of you from last nights party. What a party! And what a campaign this has been. This has been a classic New Hampshire campaign, one for the ages that well be talking about for a long time to come.

I believe that in our American Republic, the people are the sovereign they are the king -- and government is their subject. Well, the people of NH have spoken and they have ruled. While I am disappointed with the result, I humbly accept their verdict and I would ask you to join me in doing the same.

Since the Secretary of State released his final election results earlier this afternoon, a number of our supporters have expressed their strong opinion that I ask for a recount. This is message is meant directly for my supporters from around the State of New Hampshire. I have always promised to tell you the truth, even when it hurts, or when it isnt convenient.

In my professional life I have been involved in a number of recounts. I have reviewed the numbers and have spoken directly with Secretary of State Gardner and he has assured me that he sees no irregularities in the manner with which the results were reported to him. You know me and you know that Im a fighter, but I take on those fights which have a probability of success. In this case, I believe that it is in our best interests to accept the results of the election as finalized by the Secretary of State. Accordingly, I will not be seeking a recount. But I will remain a fighter for you.

A few minutes ago I spoke with Kelly Ayotte and congratulated her on her Primary victory. I have not had a chance to speak with Jim Bender or Bill Binnie, but would like to acknowledge here my gratitude to them for their well-run campaigns.

Words cannot express my gratitude for our campaign staff, for our friends and thousands of supporters and voters who brought us so close to victory yesterday. Against all odds, they contributed their time, talent and their vote in support of our campaign to advance a new conservative agenda -- and they did so in support of a candidate with the toughest name in New Hampshire politics! And I am grateful for that. And together with the help of the Union Leader which continues to demonstrate its considerable impact particularly in a Republican primary and conservative talk show host, Laura Ingraham, who was with us from the beginning, we were able to run a traditional and historic New Hampshire race for the ages.

Going into this campaign, I knew full-well that victory would be difficult. But we set out with a creative plan to win in September and November. And as you saw by this afternoons photo finish, we came very, very close. I also knew that waging this campaign would make a difference - and with the help of thousands of NH citizens, I believe we did make a difference!

We did so by staying on a positive, issue-oriented conservative message based on the core principles of freedom and liberty. We did so with the considerable support of men and women throughout the State of New Hampshire at the grassroots level in every county and every town. And we did so by conducting ourselves with dignity and decorum and we can and should all hold our heads high.

"I have said from the beginning that our nation is in crisis and we are in desperate need of conservative leadership in Washington. That remains true, so I will continue to be an advocate for conservative principles to prevail in the November election. During the campaign, you heard me talk about Ovides Oath my 15 point pledge to deliver conservative reform to Washington. Today, Im making another pledge to you. Republicans, working together with like minded Independents and Democrats will defeat Paul Hodes in November!

With that said, we must move quickly to transition into the general election in support of our Partys nominee, Kelly Ayotte, and it is my intention to do just that. I ask our supporters to join me and do the same today.

Thank you for your support and the kindness you have shown me and my family during this past year. God bless you, God bless America and God bless the great state of New Hampshire!