Alaska’s Murkowski Doubles Down on Not Supporting Trump’s Bid for President

Stephen Katte
By Stephen Katte
March 24, 2024Politics
Alaska’s Murkowski Doubles Down on Not Supporting Trump’s Bid for President
Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) on Capitol Hill in Washington on March 18, 2021. (Susan Walsh/Pool/Getty Images)

Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) has reiterated her stance that she won’t be supporting former President Donald Trump in the upcoming 2024 election.

In a March 24 interview with CNN, the senator expressed regret that former President Trump was the likely GOP nominee and made it very clear he couldn’t count on her support going forward. Previously, she said in media interviews that she couldn’t vote for Mr. Trump or President Joe Biden in the 2024 election.

“I wish that as Republicans, we had a nominee that I could get behind. I certainly can’t get behind Donald Trump,” Ms. Murkowski said.

“I don’t think that it can be defended; what happened on Jan. 6 was an effort by people who stormed a building in an effort to stop an election,” she added.

Ms. Murkowski was among seven Republican senators who voted to convict Mr. Trump in his second impeachment trial after some people rioted and breached the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021. Many others were there to peacefully protest for Congress to hear claims from the slates of alternate electors. Former president Trump has not been convicted of any crime in connection with the riots.

New arrests are still being made despite the years that have elapsed since the Capitol breach. At least 93 people were arrested and charged in 2024, after a months-long pause in 2023. As of March, the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) reported that more than 1,358 individuals had been charged. So far, 769 defendants have pleaded guilty. In addition, more than 150 have been found guilty at trials, and several dozen have been convicted after the parties agreed upon a set of facts.

Murkowski’s Plans for 2024 Election Unclear

It’s unclear what Ms. Murkowski plans to do for the 2024 election. Before former U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley ended her campaign, Ms. Murkowski said she wasn’t sure how to approach the presidential election if former President Trump was the only candidate.

On March 1, she endorsed Ms. Haley for president along with Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine) ahead of the Super Tuesday voting in 15 states. She was Ms. Haley’s first endorsement in the Senate.

“In this race, there is no one better than her,” Ms. Murkowksi said at the time.

“Nikki will be a strong leader and uphold the ideals of the Republican Party while serving as a president for all Americans.”

Ms. Haley has since dropped out of the race that has former President Trump as the clear favorite for the GOP presidential nomination. At least 1,215 delegates are required to clinch the GOP nomination for president to run against whoever takes out the Democratic Party nomination. At the moment, former president Trump has surpassed the threshold.

Ms. Murkowski was asked directly whether she might now leave the GOP and run as an independent, but only gave a vague answer, saying she considered herself “very independent-minded.”

According to Ms. Murkowski, she is “navigating my way through some very interesting political times,” but did not elaborate on what she meant.

“I just regret that our party is seemingly becoming a party of Donald Trump,” she added.

Ms. Murkowski has served in the Senate for more than 20 years after being appointed in 2002 by her father, Gov. Frank Murkowski. She has long been considered more moderate than many Republicans. Her declaration of not voting for former President Trump echoes the stances of outgoing Sen. Mitt Romney (R-Utah) and former Rep. Liz Cheney, who have both said they will not vote for him either.

From The Epoch Times

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