Trump-backed Republican Kelly Tshibaka officially entered the race to unseat Alaska RINO Sen. Lisa Murkowski on Tuesday.
Murkowski was one of a handful of GOP senators who voted to convict former President Donald Trump of committing impeachable offenses related to the Jan. 6, 2021, Capitol incursion.
“By inciting the insurrection and violent events that culminated on January 6, President Trump’s actions and words were not protected free speech,” Murkowski said in a statement at the time.
The vote was in February 2021 after the 45th president had left office, by the way, so that was pretty vindictive stuff from the senator.
In his speech near the White House on the day of the incursion, Trump had encouraged his followers to march to the Capitol to “peacefully and patriotically make your voices heard.”
That doesn’t sound like incitement to violence to me.
Tshibaka believes Murkowski is out of touch with Alaskans.
Trump carried the Last Frontier by double digits in 2020.
“Everywhere I have been in Alaska over the past year, people have told me the same thing: It’s time for a change,” Tshibaka said in a statement after filing to run against the incumbent.
“Whether it’s in rural Alaska or a city, no matter a person’s race, age, or gender, no matter if they’re retired, working, unemployed, or a stay-at-home mom or dad, people all feel the same way. Lisa Murkowski has forgotten all about them because she cares more about her popularity among the Washington, D.C. elites,” she said.
Today, I formally filed as a candidate for U.S. Senate in Alaska, taking on Lisa Murkowski, who has turned her back on the state. It’s time for a change. Check out my statement ⬇️ https://t.co/E7ltySqOkc pic.twitter.com/0hYS6FZMxX
— Kelly Tshibaka – Text KELLY to 20903 (@KellyForAlaska) April 11, 2022
Murkowski’s most recent vote with the Democrats was to confirm far-left Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson to the U.S. Supreme Court last week.
She joined her usual partners in crime, fellow “moderate” Republicans Sens. Susan Collins of Maine and Mitt Romney of Utah, while every other GOP member voted against the controversial nominee.
Murkowski also sided with the Democrats in 2018 to oppose Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation to the high court. She was the only GOP member to do so.
Further, the senator was one of four Republicans who voted to confirm liberal Democrat Deb Haaland as interior secretary in March 2021.
She did so despite the fact that Haaland was on record saying she opposed oil drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Reserve in Alaska, a portion of which had been opened for development under Trump.
Murkowski acknowledged before casting her vote in favor of Haaland that she had her doubts about the nominee’s commitment to allowing responsible resource development in Alaska.
“So I am going to place my trust in Representative Haaland and her team despite some very real misgivings,” the senator said.
Murkowski’s trust was not well-placed.
Months after taking office, Haaland issued an order halting all oil exploration activities in ANWR, citing “alleged legal deficiencies” and an “insufficient analysis” of the environmental impact.
Reuters reported in January that the Interior Department also halted plans to expand leasing and development of the National Petroleum Reserve in Alaska, despite oil-and-gas production falling to a 43-year low in 2020.
Tshibaka says Murkowski is not representing Alaska well.
“These are not the votes that a senator from Alaska should be casting,” the candidate told The Associated Press.
“Murkowski has made poor decisions like this over and over, and we, the people of Alaska, continue to pay the price for her popularity in Washington, D.C.”
It’s always great to be on Steve Bannon’s War Room. This time we talk about how Alaska has felt the effects of Lisa Murkowski’s Liberal decisions that always put the people of our state last. pic.twitter.com/VUA5yzcT3J
— Kelly Tshibaka – Text KELLY to 20903 (@KellyForAlaska) April 8, 2022
In one of the most high-profile votes of Trump’s tenure in office, Murkowski joined the Democrats in voting against the repeal of Obamacare in 2017.
The Alaska Republican Party listed all these actions, including her vote to impeach Trump, when it voted to censure Murkowski in March 2021 and pledged to find and support a primary challenger.
Trump also promised last summer to campaign against Murkowski in Alaska.
“Senator Lisa Murkowski has cost the great people of Alaska billions and billions of dollars by voting for Radical Left Biden appointees, which in turn led to the revocation of ANWR drilling, which Alaskans have been fighting to see happen for six decades,” the 45th president said in a statement at the time.
“Not only did Murkowski kill the biggest economic stimulant for the State, but also one of the biggest energy producing sites in the world,” he continued.
“She’s the best friend Washington Democrats ever had — and Alaska’s reward for that betrayal is an empowered Left coming after their wealth and jobs,” Trump said.
“I think she will be met very harshly by the Alaska voters in [the midterm elections], and I will be there to campaign against her!” he said.
What goes around might just be about to come around for Murkowski.
She staked out her ground as a Trump foe early on, and he could be the one to help usher her out of office this year.