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Playing dirty will hurt senator's effectiveness

Posted: Monday, October 11, 2004

I have been sadly disappointed in Lisa Murkowski. After her early protests about negative campaigning she has come out slinging mud and distorting the truth. It seems that the one sure thing she has learned in her time in Washington is how to run a nasty campaign all the while protesting how fair and honest she is.

The bad thing is that in slinging mud at Tony Knowles she is slinging mud at senior sitting Democratic U.S. senators. If there is ever to be drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, these men will have to be convinced to help make it happen.

How will Lisa now be able to even talk to, let alone convince these men to help, when her campaign is making them into ogres. Like our own Sen. Ted Stevens, these men have long memories. They will put the junior senator in her place!

Slinging mud at these men may play well in Alaska to help Lisa keep her job, but it is counter productive to getting ANWR opened. Frank Murkowski was a partisan bench warmer in the U.S. Senate. Lisa is setting herself up to continue the ineffectiveness of her father.

In the U.S. Senate to get things done you have to have friends on both sides of the aisle. Lisa has fallen in with the highly partisan Republicans in Washington. Republican politics comes first. Alaska needs are an also-ran. She has failed to learn from the Alaska master Ted Stevens.

Even when Ted Stevens was in the minority he got Alaska projects funded. How? By staying friends with Democratic Sen. Byrd of West Virginia, appropriations chairman. In reverse, they continue to work together. Alaska did and does benefit.

Lisa's mud slinging may help her keep her bench-warming seat in Washington, but it will not bode well for Alaska. Even if the Democrats don't take control of the U.S. Senate this year, they will in 2006. History is on their side. The senior Democrats will remember the mud-slinging Lisa. Ted Stevens and Don Young are not going to live forever.

William J. Phillips, Kenai



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