A contentious electoral battle pitting four-term incumbent Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) against Donald Trump-endorsed Kelly Tshibaka will go to Alaska’s voters in the Aug. 16 primary.
Voting in the ranked-choice election will take place in person throughout America’s Last Frontier.
The primary ballot has seven Republicans, three Democrats, five Independents, two Alaska Independent Party candidates, and one Libertarian.
The top four vote-getters will advance to the Nov. 8 general election.
In July, data analyst Morning Consult reported that 46 percent of Alaska voters approved of Murkowski’s job performance.
Kelly Tshibaka addresses reporters in Anchorage, Alaska, in September 2019. (Mark Thiessen/AP)
How that stacks up against Trump-endorsed Tshibaka’s growing popularity with conservative Alaska voters, however, remains to be seen.
Murkowski took office in 2002 when her father appointed her to his own U.S. Senate seat which he vacated upon being elected Alaska’s governor. She is currently the second most senior female member in the Senate after Sen. Susan Collins of Maine.
‘Clout and Seniority’
“Every day, I use my seniority, clout, and bipartisan relationships to advance and secure policy victories that benefit our state,” Murkowski said on her campaign website.
“Alaska is important to me because it’s my home, and because it’s yours,” she said.
During her tenure, Murkowski said she authored and passed “the most significant infrastructure law in U.S. history, delivering much-needed relief and critical funding to hardworking Alaska families and businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic.”
She listed as other accomplishments basing F-35 fighter jets at Eielson AFB in Alaska, supporting “responsible resource development” and renewable energy.
However, she faces a conservative credibility challenge as one of seven Republican senators who voted to convict Trump of incitement to insurrection in his second impeachment trial after the Jan. 6 Capitol protest.
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