Alaska GOP snubs Murkowski, supports Trump-endorsed GOP primary opponent

A number of high-profile Republicans in Congress made what seemed to be politically tactical decisions to distance themselves from former President Donald Trump, especially after the events of Jan. 6. But those decisions, as the former president warned would happen on several occasions, are beginning to backfire.

According to the Washington Examiner, Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) is now feeling the wrath as a result of her anti-Trump stance, as the Alaska Republican Party announced that it’s endorsing her GOP primary opponent in the 2022 midterm elections. 

Murkowski is also suffering in some of the latest polls. That, coupled with a lack of support from Alaska’s large base of pro-Trump voters, spells bad news for Murkowski’s political ambitions.

“Kelly is a fighter”

Kelly Tshibaka, Murkowski’s pro-Trump challenger, was endorsed by the former president, who heaped praise on the GOP candidate in a June statement while slamming the incumbent Republican senator.

“Her vote to confirm Biden’s Interior Secretary was a vote to kill long sought for, and approved, ANWR, and Alaska jobs. Murkowski has got to go!” Trump’s statement read.

Trump added: “Kelly Tshibaka is the candidate who can beat Murkowski — and she will. Kelly is a fighter who stands for Alaska values and America First.”

The former president vowed in March that he wouldn’t back Murkowski “under any circumstances,” and slammed the senator – who was once so popular that she won an election as a write-in candidate after losing the Republican primary — as “a disloyal and very bad Senator.”

Alaska Republicans fire shots

The Alaska Republican Party made clear as early as March of this year that they’re no longer supportive of Murkowski, having formally censured her at the time. At the time, the Republican officials agreed to “recruit a Republican Party challenger to oppose and prohibit Senator Murkowski from being a candidate in any Republican primary.”

As of this week, it would appear as if they followed through on that promise, having formally endorsed Tshibaka as their choice to represent the state in the U.S. Senate next year.

“We now move forward with a united front, determined to defend Alaska from the continued onslaught of the radical Biden administration,” the freshly-endorsed GOP candidate said in a statement over the weekend, according to the Anchorage Daily News.

Tshibaka added: “It is time for conservative leaders, with courage and common sense, to rise together across the nation.”

Only time will tell, but Murkowski likely won’t be the only anti-Trump Republican to face the steep consequences of taking an anti-Trump stance as a member of the Republican party.

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