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Judi Lynn Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Aug-21-06 10:09 AM
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Alaska Governor Battles a Shifting Tide
Alaska Governor Battles a Shifting Tide
Despite Strong Political Past, Murkowski Slips to Third in the Polls Heading Into Tuesday's GOP Gubernatorial Primary

By Dan Balz
Washington Post Staff Writer
Monday, August 21, 2006; Page A03

ANCHORAGE -- Gov. Frank H. Murkowski (R) left Washington four years ago to serve as Alaska's chief executive and what he hoped would be a gratifying capstone to his many years in public service. He now faces an ignominious end to that long political career as he struggles to avoid defeat in Tuesday's Republican gubernatorial primary.

Murkowski's early campaign commercials told the story of his problems. In one television ad, his wife, Nancy, admits that he's a stubborn man. A newspaper ad had him suggesting that he needed a personality transplant. A radio jingle to the tune of Merle Haggard's ballad "Okie From Muskogee," available on his Web site, ends with: "He might not win awards for his charisma, but Alaska's gonna need Frank in '06."

A defeat on Tuesday would make him the fourth incumbent to lose a primary election this month. On Aug. 8, Sen. Joseph I. Lieberman (D-Conn.), Rep. Cynthia McKinney (D-Ga.) and Rep. John J.H. "Joe" Schwarz (R-Mich.) were defeated in primaries. Murkowski, who has been running third in recent public polls, may be headed for the same fate.

Murkowski spent 22 years in the Senate, rising to chairman of the Energy and Natural Resources Committee, where he battled unsuccessfully to open the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to oil and gas drilling, fought to prevent bans on logging in the Tongass National Forest with limited success and championed a natural gas pipeline that would bring the state's gas reserves to the Midwest.
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maddezmom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Aug-21-06 10:12 AM
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