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Victorious Murkowski: Alaskans Rejected Governance Based on 'Anger or Fear'

3 years ago
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Sen. Lisa Murkowksi, claiming an improbable write-in victory in Alaska's Senate race, signaled her independence Thursday and said voters in the state rejected the politics of anger in choosing her over a tea party candidate endorsed by Sarah Palin.

"The numbers are what they are and they clearly indicate Alaskans have not only spoken, they have written it down," she said in an interview from Anchorage with NBC's "Today" show.

Murkowski's ultra-conservative Republican opponent, Joe Miller, has yet to concede, but the Associated Press called the race for the incumbent on Wednesday -- more than two weeks after the election -- as the official count of write-in ballots showed her with a 10,000-vote margin. Miller has demanded a hand recount and has a legal challenge pending over misspelled names on some of the write-in ballots.

Murkowski isn't waiting. "Against all odds," she told supporters Wednesday, "we, as Alaskans, made history." She is the first Senate candidate since 1954 to win as a write-in. "Imagine," she said, "over 100,000 people who wrote-in the same name."

She told NBC Thursday that her triumph "was not a Republican campaign" but an effort that brought together independents, Democrats and Republicans. Murkowski has said she will sit with the GOP caucus on Capitol Hill, even though the leadership sided with Miller after he defeated her in Alaska's primary. But she is a moderate who was elected as an independent and has said she does not share the fervor of some partisans who say they want President Obama to fail.

Asked by "Today" host Matt Lauer what her victory says about the impact of Palin -- her political rival -- Murkowski didn't answer directly, but seemed to allude to Palin's combative style. In the election, she said voters had stated that "we don't want governance based on anger or fear. We want governance that comes about when people reach across the table."

Watch the interview below.

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17 Comments

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mebecarl

Talk about facing the truth......... Let's face it; Lisa has been pissed ever since Palin beat her daddy in the Governor's race, and it got even worse when Miller beat Lisa in the Senate race. The woman just doesn't get it. Palin has already shown more leadership qualities than Murkowski. Lisa got in because of her daddy; not because of her experience. That leaves her as just another whiny Liberal that the voters indicated that they don't want anymore. She should take the hint like Dodd did in CT; save face and get out.

November 22 2010 at 9:40 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
ajcook111

Lisa Murkowski is the real star from Alaska and a woman of substance.

November 18 2010 at 3:36 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
sykiks

I remember a time in this country when government worked pretty well. Not perfectly. but pretty well. Democrats and Republicans hated each other at election time but as soon as the election was over, they got back down to business. They didn't spend the entire time between elections bashing the other party and refusing to work with them. A lot of Congress voted their conscience instead of the party line. Sounds amazing doesn't it? How did this work? I'll tell you. It's called compromise. One side would go to the others and say "We want this". The others would say, "We won't do that, but we will do this if you will let us have what we want". They would bargain back and forth until they reached a deal. Congress actually got things done. Each side acted as a brake on the extremists of the other side. While the Goverment worked like this we got amazing things done. We fought two World Wars and won. We had a great education system and our economy was running pretty well. We put a man on the moon. We were the world leader in science. We were respected in the world. Oh we had our problems but both sides generally worked together to solve them. How did they do this? With Compromise. That is how this country was created. Our Declaration of Independence and our Constitution were products of Compromise. The whole design of our goverment was the result of compromise. The three branches of goverment; the two houses of Congress; the way representation was alloted in the two houses of Congress. That was all the result of compromise. This country was born from compromise and designed to work with compromise. Compromise is not a dirty word in government. Conservative and Liberal are not dirty words. They are political philosophies. Government is not black and white. It is mostly gray. Put the partisan politics aside and let's get things working again. Compromise.

November 18 2010 at 2:28 PM Report abuse +9 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to sykiks's comment
John

You're one of the few commentators on these websites who gets it. Great piece!!.

November 18 2010 at 2:40 PM Report abuse +6 rate up rate down Reply
italianarias

Lisa Murkowski for President, 2012!!

November 18 2010 at 1:25 PM Report abuse -10 rate up rate down Reply
monza866

Anger and fear? Fear that your country is being led down the wrong path by the Dems is a bad thing ? Anger that the president is jamming an agenda down our throats is unfounded? Why is opposition unreasonable? Moderates try to appease and in doing so don't confront the issues in order to correct them.

November 18 2010 at 12:52 PM Report abuse -9 rate up rate down Reply
Ken McFarlane

The people of Alaska said No in the primary. Murkowski does not know what NO means. Lisa is a RHINO she should be an outcast in the Republican party. Opine of a life long Alaskan

November 18 2010 at 12:43 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to Ken McFarlane's comment
John

All politicians flip flop on issues. When a major piece of legislation is proposed there are amendments on other issues are included. Politicians then have to decided whether they'll vote for it based on how the amendments affect their positions and their states. This is a big problem. If don't ask/don't tell comes up for a vote, it should be just that. There should be no conditions or amendments attached to it in order to get legislators to vote for it or against it. That's why I support the line item veto.

November 18 2010 at 4:18 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Jim

Murkowski flip flopped on alot of issues to get elected, sounds like just another politician that will say anything to get elected, hope it works out for Alaska, glad she is there!

November 18 2010 at 12:34 PM Report abuse +13 rate up rate down Reply
fredlynn07

Boy that's going to go over like a lead balloon in the GOP. Good for you Senator, enough with the hatred, anger and fear. This is America, land of opportunity and laws. Here a lie is a lie even if it is used as truth on FOX. Let truth and freedom reign!

November 18 2010 at 12:31 PM Report abuse +13 rate up rate down Reply
John

A lot of class from Murkowski congratulating McAdams and Miller for their campaign runs. I like her attitude about working with Democrats and Independents coming up with the best solutions to move this country forward. This is still missing from the Liberals and the Conservatives. Congress needs to stop governing based on hate and fear as has been the case in the past 2 years. The same hate and fear I noticed from the hundreds of comments I read on these websites. This woman is a uniter not a divider like Sarah Palin.

November 18 2010 at 12:16 PM Report abuse +7 rate up rate down Reply
aechock

seems like she "gets it"! partisan politicians on both sides of the aisle will soon realize that the american people actually want something from congress besides gridlock and bickering!!

November 18 2010 at 12:13 PM Report abuse +9 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to aechock's comment
monza866

When the govt is in gridlock our lives are better.

November 18 2010 at 12:53 PM Report abuse -6 rate up rate down Reply

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