OPINION: This article may contain commentary which reflects the author’s opinion.
Moderate Sen. Lisa Murkowski, who voted to impeach then-President Donald Trump after the Jan. 6 riot, may be looking at a forced retirement after two decades in office, according to a noted election forecaster.
Murkowski, considered a Republican “moderate,” is trailing GOP challenger Kelly C. Tshibaka, whose candidacy has long been backed by the former president, and is now in danger of losing the U.S. Senate seat she has held for 20 years, Fox News reported.
“A Republican has roughly a 99% chance to win next month’s Alaska senate election, with Republican challenger Kelly C. Tshibaka considered [most] likely to emerge with the victory at 53%, according to election forecaster FiveThirtyEight,” noted Fox News.
The outlet added: Tshibaka, a Trump-backed Republican challenger who previously served as a commissioner of the Alaska Department of Administration, is currently locked in a tight battle with Murkowski after the incumbent senator generated controversy by supporting the impeachment of former President Trump.
Alaska’s 2022 race is unique thanks to a 2020 ballot measure in which voters approved ranked-choice voting in the state’s elections, meaning both Tshibaka and Murkowski will appear on the ballot despite being members of the same party. The two emerged as the top two candidates in the state’s nonpartisan blanket primary in August and will face off with Democratic candidate Patricia Chesbro in November’s general election.
Alaska voters, let’s go!@KellyForAlaska about to do it.
Trump-backed Tshibaka projected to defeat 20-year incumbent Sen. Murkowski, election forecaster sayshttps://t.co/rgxFhYdbfp
— Richard Grenell (@RichardGrenell) October 11, 2022
Murkowski, who was first appointed to the Senate in 2002, has long been a swing vote in partisan battles on Capitol Hill. According to a 2017 GovTrack analysis, she is the second-most liberal GOP senator and is to the left of the chamber’s most conservative Democrat, Sen. Joe Manchin of West Virginia.
Tshibaka’s good news did not escape the attention of the former president, who noted it on his Truth Social platform while also taking a potshot at Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell for throwing financial support behind Murkowski: “Kelly Tshibaka is doing very well in Alaska, probably leading horrendously bad Senator Lisa Murkowski, a Republican (barely!). The Democrat has no chance, and yet the Old Broken Crow, Mitchell McConnell, is authorizing $9 Million Dollars to be spent in order to beat a great Republican, Kelly, instead of $9 Million Dollars that could be used for Blake Masters, and other Republicans, that with this money would beat their Democrat opponent. Isn’t it ironic?”
Regarding Alaska’s ranked-choice voting, another midterm candidate, former Gov. Sarah Palin — who is running for the state’s sole House seat — eschewed the process and said it was a way for Democrats to steal victories from Republicans in red districts.
“This is what’s going to elect Democrats and destroy our country before we even know it,” she told Breitbart News editor Adrienne Ross in an interview last week, as the voting system appears to be gaining favor with more Americans. “I am just sounding that alarm that it’s this bad.”
“I don’t want this to happen to any other electorate, in any city, in any state,” the former running mate to the late Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.). “Alaska is kind of this test case right now where we have elements of a perfect bad storm. We have lax voter-ID laws. We have a long election cycle where mail-in ballots can be mailed in for — gosh — it seems like months if not many weeks.”
“Those are just a couple of aspects that create kind of this distrust of people in the process, and we cannot afford to have people not trust free and fair elections in our communities, in our states, in our nation, or we’re going to go under,” she added.
“It’s not winner-take-all,” she continued. “You rank the candidates. … Then a process of elimination via an algorithm in a computer takes votes and distributes them to other candidates if the person that you did choose as your number-one pick didn’t end up on top.”
“This was written for Lisa Murkowski — and she’s a RINO — to keep her in the U.S. Senate because she can’t run and win as a normal Republican in Alaska because people figured her out. It was her attorney who wrote this thing,” she added.