Vandalism targets Murkowski campaign

Posted: Tuesday, October 19, 2010

A recent string of vandalism targeted local signs supporting Sen. Lisa Murkowski.

Photo By Andrew Waite
Photo By Andrew Waite
The above sign, photographed Monday at the intersection of the Kenai Spur Highway and Airport Way in Kenai, is one of several Sen. Lisa Murkowski advertisements targeted in a recent string of vandalism.

Murkowski advertisements in at least eight locations in Kenai, Soldotna and Kalifornsky Beach were defaced with bold letters reading "No R.I.N.O." (Republican in Name Only). Other signs were slashed and torn down.

Police say the vandalism appeared to have targeted Murkowski's campaign.

"To my knowledge, we haven't had any other candidates who have had signs damaged," Kenai Police Sgt. Scott McBride said. Police are still searching for suspects.

Murkowski's camp isn't making too much of the vandalism, however.

"It's unfortunate that people think that's acceptable behavior, but this ain't our first rodeo," Murkowski campaign spokesman Steve Wackowski said. "We're going to keep on fighting and we're going to keep pressing on."

Locally, the defacing has made more of an impact. Jane Madison, who is coordinating Murkowski's campaign in the central Kenai Peninsula region, spent Monday touring the area assessing the damage.

"It's a big deal because it takes time to find the locations to put up these signs, to build them and then put them up. And now we have to try and fix any of them and remove the paint, and that's going to take a lot of work," Madison said. "It's very sad."

Murkowski is running a write-in campaign to re-claim her Senate seat. She was defeated in the Republican primary by candidate Joe Miller. Recent polls show her candidacy running neck-and-neck with Miller and Democrat candidate Scott McAdams.

Andrew Waite can be reached at andrew.waite@peninsulaclarion.com.



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