Lisa Murkowski is not going gently into that good night. She wants ever so badly to pull a Charlie Crist, but alas, the deadline for filing as an independent is past. She could run as a write-in, but that never works. Or she could convince a third party candidate to drop out and have the party executive committee name her as replacement. There aren’t a lot of possibilities there. There’s the Alaska Independence Party, but since they didn’t run somebody in the primary, it’s unlikely that they could legally run somebody now. Besides, the AIP isn’t having it:
The chairwoman of AIP responded…
Senator Murkowski is a registered Republican, not AIP. She therefore cannot be a candidate for this Party…we are not a “rent-a-party” for the Republicans. There is NO possibility regarding her “running” as Alaskan Independence Party candidate.
That leaves the Libertarian Party. They’re running a guy named Fredrick “David” Haase. He seems like a nice enough old duffer. His written literacy skills are marginal, but as Max Baucus just explained to us the other day, you don’t have to be literate to sponsor massive legislation like the health care bill. He’s a bit squishy on issue and principle, and seems to be running a bit to the left of Sharron Angle. In short, the sort of place-holder candidate the LP usually ends up with. Well, apparently he’s amenable to stepping out of his place in favor of Murkowski. Worse, there seems to be some support for this from the state chair, who noted, “There are many considerations here, including a chance at the first elected Libertarian U.S. Senator in our party’s history.” As St. Ayn said, words have meanings. And as another Alaska politician noted, you can put lipstick on a pig, but it’s still a pig, and an “L” after a statist swine’s name isn’t going to make her a libertarian. As a PuffHo tells us,
Lisa Murkowski is a gracious, smart, hardworking, nonideological, pro-choice political technocrat whose policy views, when unrestrained by electoral necessity, are to the left of those of Susan Collins and Olympia Snowe.
Now, it seems to me (being/having been one myself) that the reason most Libertarians go through the considerable hassle of getting/keeping ballot access and running candidates with grossly inadaquate resources is…so they can vote for libertarian candidates. So the party rank and file are going to sit on their hands for this one. They might not even vote for her; why should they, when the Republicans have a more libertarian candidate? They may get help from disgruntled Republicans…but I see no reason why even the most K-Street Republican would vote for her when (as they always tell us) a Libertarian vote is a vote for the Democrat. I see no way that she could pull more than 10% in a 3-way… and Alaska has done better than that with real Libertarians. So why would they consider giving up the “Party of Principle” image for “The Party of Second Chances for Sore Losers”? It would destroy their brand (which has already taken many hits) for a dubious gain. So I don’t think it’ll happen, and (as GoodMcCain says), “It’s over for Lisa the Loser.”
Not surprisingly, it is said that Eric Dondero (who would have touted Hitler as a libertarian if he were running against Stalin) is involved in this, but I haven’t found any concrete evidence of that.
Manwhile, back to that PuffHo cited earlier…he blames the loss on Ted Stevens not being around to campaign for her. Does he really think that all the very motivated people who turned out for Joe Miller would have turned out for Murkowski if a convicted and disgraced defeated political has-been had pitcher her to them? Does he really think this is the year for dynastic princesses?
UPDATE 8/30: Alaska ExecCom voted unanimously to say “Hell, no.” It took them 3 contentious hours, which is troubling. But they did the right thing.