The Alaska Republican Party endorsed Kelly Tshibaka over incumbent Republican Sen. Lisa Murkowski on Saturday.
In a 58-17 vote, the party’s central committee approved the endorsement of Tshibaka, giving Alaska’s former commissioner of the Department of Administration an additional boost.
Former President Donald Trump endorsed Tshibaka after his long-fraught relationship with Murkowski disintegrated further over her decision to vote to convict the former president at his second impeachment trial earlier this year. Trump vowed to campaign against “a disloyal and very bad Senator” in March and announced he would not be endorsing the 20-year incumbent “under any circumstances.”
Murkowski was censured by her state party in March, with the Alaska Republicans agreeing to “recruit a Republican Party challenger to oppose and prohibit Senator Murkowski from being a candidate in any Republican primary.”
In a June statement announcing his support for her challenger, Trump slammed Murkowski for her vote to confirm Interior Secretary Deb Haaland, who suspended drilling leases in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.
POLL OF LIKELY 2022 VOTERS IN ALASKA (5/22-25):
In Alaska's new ranked-choice voting system, Senator Lisa Murkowski begins this race in a difficult position: 3rd place.
— Change Research (@ChangePolls) June 8, 2021