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GOP rebellion in Alaska

How often is it seen when a Governor endorses a challenger over the long-time incumbent in a Congressional race. From AP-

ANCHORAGE, Alaska - A state Republican convention that could have unified a troubled party descended into infighting Friday, with the lieutenant governor announcing his intention to unseat a congressman and the governor calling for changes in GOP leadership.

Lt. Gov. Sean Parnell said he would challenge U.S. Rep. Don Young, the 18-term incumbent who's the subject of a federal investigation that includes his campaign finance practices.

"The days of unquestioning loyalty are gone," Parnell said a few hours later after filing candidacy paperwork. "It's time for principled leadership."

Gov. Sarah Palin escorted Parnell into the Division of Elections office and immediately endorsed him over Young. She gave no thought to the protocol of an endorsement months before the August primary, she said.

"When something's right, it's right," she said. "There's no time like the present to state your case and speak candidly about what you believe it. And I believe in his candidacy."

Young and Senior Senator Ted Stevens are both under federal investigation. If the Republican party doesn't want to crash and burn as bad as it did in 2006, its got to distance itself from some of its officeholders.

I wonder if Palin's endorsement will anger establisment types in the Republican party. Therefore harming any chance she has of being McCain's running mate.

I think the divisiveness in Alaska(A heavily Republican state) is just one more sign of the trouble ahead for the Republican party in 2008. You can't dismiss the lack of Senatorial candidates, corruption proved or alleged at this time, the at least half dozen vulnerable GOP Senate seats, or maybe most of all the anti--McCain sentiments that are so strong that it threatens to have some Republicans stay home in November even though they know what will be the result of that action. Gather your senses Republicans, a Democrat in the White House with Democratic majorities in both the House and Senate is going to be a nightmare you'll be regretting not too far down the road.


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Comments (14)

McGehee has some interestin... (Below threshold)

McGehee has some interesting pointers on the situation, being an Alaskan temporarily displaced southward...


Are you claiming that havin... (Below threshold)
Diane C. Russell:

Are you claiming that having McCain in the White House WON'T be a nightmare? I've voted 12 times for Republican presidential candidates, never for a Democrat, but McCain is absolutely beyond the pale.

Palin is untouchable in Ala... (Below threshold)
Geefour 907:

Palin is untouchable in Alaska. Her endorsement instantly is worth 25 points for Parnell. I'm thinking of getting a yard sign.

I'm not sure the situation ... (Below threshold)

I'm not sure the situation in Alaska is necessarily indicative of what's going on nationally. As much as Alaska is a red state, it's also a state that has had surprising difficulty in electing Republican governors down through the years. In 1990 the Republican gubernatorial nominee came in third, and the ticket nominated by the Alaskan Independence Party (Wally Hickel and Jack Coghill) was elected. If Hickel's name sounds familiar, it's because his first governorship (elected as a Republican) was interrupted by an appointment to Nixon's Cabinet. Hickel reverted to the GOP after taking office in 1990. That was a divisive year for Alaska Republicans.

Then there was 1998, when the party actually repudiated its gubernatorial nominee after irregularities were found in his disclosures. If I remember right, a write-in alternative GOP ticket actually received more votes than the one that was printed on the ballot.

The GOP's history of top-of-the-ticket troubles is what caused a high-seniority U.S. Senator to give up his seat to seek the governorship in 2002 -- and his 2006 re-election bid, repudiated in the primary, is what led to Palin's governorship. She's surprisingly popular up there -- Don Young, I think not so much.

I think we're getting to a ... (Below threshold)

I think we're getting to a point where there's no real way to hide your actions (or inactions) in office any more. The newspapers used to be able to gloss over the more outrageous stuff, if the political bent of the incumbent was within their sphere of tolerance (look how long Cynthia McKinney was able to be crazy in Georgia, with the 'support' of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution) - but with more and more people becoming aware of on-line content, such ability to keep the stupidities of your average politician 'under the radar' is going to become much more difficult.

And that's only seen as a 'bug' by those who KNOW their actions are outside the bounds.

Diane - I'm not too thrilled with McCain - but I'm even LESS thrilled with the other two possibles. Hillary believes she's OWED this, and she's capable of handling the job. I disagree with her on both counts. Obama's been pushed as the best possible candidate, when the man's an essential blank screen that people are projecting their own fantasies on. Neither of them would put Country first - Hillary's out for herself, with Party second and Country dead last. Obama? Party, then Self/Country - I believe he may sincerely think he can handle the job, but the man's too much of a lightweight. He will crash and burn, and what effect would THAT have on the country? We had one Jimmy Carter - we can't afford another.

Neither of them, I believe, would put country above party. And there's a serious question in my mind about the Democratic party when those two are the BEST the Democratic Party can offer.

McCain? Like I said, I'm not thrilled with him. I believe he'd put Country ahead of Party and Self, though. That'll get him my vote.

Palin is untouc... (Below threshold)
Palin is untouchable in Alaska.
Even from way down here in Georgia, the signs of her popularity are phenomenal.

I really wish she had somebody to put up against Stevens too.

The absolutely ideal method... (Below threshold)

The absolutely ideal method of enforcing term limits: elections.

More power to the Alaskans, and may their number grow and prosper!

Palin is definitely loved u... (Below threshold)

Palin is definitely loved up there by most. She is young good and good looking. She has a great family. Her husband is a competitor in the Iron Dog races. She was a good mayor of Wasilla. I ran into her at the state fair last year having a good time like any other alaskan. I think one of the big things that got her elected was that she did not seem a part of that established group of good old boys in the republican party. A breath of fresh air. Even my lifelong republican father believes that they should get rid of Young and Stevens.

So we're standing up to the... (Below threshold)

So we're standing up to the likes of Young and Stevens, who aren't exactly great GOPers these days. How is this a sign of "trouble"? Isn't this what's needed?

And I second term limits. But I realize the lifers out there would oppose it vociferously.

"The days of unquestion... (Below threshold)
-S- Author Profile Page:

"The days of unquestioning loyalty are gone," Parnell said a few hours later after filing candidacy paperwork. "It's time for principled leadership."

Rather than blame the "most of all the anti--McCain sentiments that are so strong" voters, maybe all GOP candidates (and the RNC) should take Parnell's statement there to heart and stop assuming that they'll have the votes whoever they run, as long as they run anyone under a "GOP" ticket (which has resulted in McCain among others, and why there's a lot of disgruntlement among Republican voters -- who are tired of the "no alternative" or assumed vote regardless of candidate and position).

I've taken a certain amount of criticism for being firm with candidates as to my most serious issues and concerns, as if to question any Republican in campaign was to be a traitor to the nation. I THINK a lot of why the GOP has these problems today is that too much of that type of criticism and presumption upon voters exists; we really have to start holding GOP candidates accountable, just as we do when we criticise Democrats. Otherwise, we get a lot of candidates but no representation, in my view. The GOP KNOWS that most Republicans will not vote for a Democrat (they're right about that as to my vote/s), BUT, the issue today is whether I can even vote for a Republican, what with a Liberal candidate and little option to not support the "whomever" candidate but by party-only appeal. It's lead us to a presumptuous political party (various "gangs" in the Senate running amok and ridiculing voter opinions).

A democrat President with a... (Below threshold)

A democrat President with a congress controlled by democrats will be as much as a disaster for the nation as a republican President with a congress controlled by Republicans.

This is a great sign, and o... (Below threshold)
John F Not Kerry:

This is a great sign, and one I hope is repeated in many places around the country. Too many in Congress, both R and D, seem to feel like their seat is theirs by divine right, and not at the will of the people governed. If that is to ever stop, enough people on both sides need to do things like this: challenge the incumbents at the primary level.

FWIW, I don't think Palin was going to get the VP nod with a child on the way. If she can keep going strong like she is, though, she may have a bright national GOP future.

FWIW, I don't t... (Below threshold)
FWIW, I don't think Palin was going to get the VP nod with a child on the way.
That's a point I hadn't even considered, and a good catch, JFnotK. She wouldn't even consider embarking on a national campaign with a newborn.
So we're standing up to ... (Below threshold)
Les Nessman:

So we're standing up to the likes of Young and Stevens, who aren't exactly great GOPers these days. How is this a sign of "trouble"? Isn't this what's needed?







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