Murkowski should be removed from leadership for write-in campaign

Posted: Tuesday, November 09, 2010

This may be the oddest letter to the editor in a decidedly odd election cycle, but it's odd when a write-in candidate is helped by the sitting lieutenant governor to disenfranchise the largest primary turnout since statehood. Unusual circumstances require unusual responses.

If you voted against Sen. Lisa Murkowski in the August primary and now feel your vote has been disenfranchised, then you recognize that our electoral process has been hijacked. If you think it's not right for special interests to override the votes of Alaskans, contact Sen. Mitch McConnell, the presumptive Senate minority leader and ask him to strip her of her committee assignments and seniority, as is the usual course of action when a sitting senator runs as an "independent." Yes, it might mean a little less bacon from Murkowski for a while, but that pig's been stripped clean anyway, so I wouldn't expect a lot of bacon headed to Alaska (or anywhere else) in the next decade regardless of her standing in the Senate.

Alaskan politics are on the cusp. If we want Lower 48 candidacies and dirty tricks at every turn, we let this election stand and it becomes the "Murkowski seat." If we want Alaskan politics returned to the day when former governors Wally Hickle and Bill Egan could run against one another and passionately disagree on the issues while maintaining a friendship, then we teach Murkowski we're done with her spoiled rotten brat behavior and it's time to grow up and accept the consequences of her behavior. It also sends a strong message to everyone who helped her, like Lt. Gov. Craig Campbell, we won't accept Chicago-style politics here.

Just log onto the U.S. Senate site, look up McConnell and fill out your request on his web form. If you don't use the web, send a letter or make a phone call. Let's take a long range view of Alaska's needs and make sure Murkowski knows who she works for. Let's tell her that we abhor her arrogance and take away her ability to serve the special interests who elected her over our wishes.

Lauri Sliney

Fairbanks



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