Sen. Lisa Murkowski Could Face Reprisal from Alaska GOP

Alaska Republican was only member of her party to vote against Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh

Sen. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, talks with the media in the Capitol after voting “no” on a cloture vote that advanced the Supreme Court nomination of Brett Kavanaugh to a final vote on October 5, 2018. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Sen. Lisa Murkowski could face severe consequences from her state party for her decision to reject new associate Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh at his confirmation vote over the weekend.

The Alaska Republican was the only GOP senator to oppose Kavanaugh’s confirmation, which passed 50-48 mostly along party lines. (Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., voted with Republicans.)

The Alaska GOP has asked Murkowski to hand over any information that they could use as the state central committee deliberates on whether or not to hand out any punishment, and, if so, how severe it should be, The Associated Press reported.

The party could just issue a statement, chairman Tuckerman Babcock said. Or it could renounce its support of Murkowski, seek a new GOP nominee for 2022, and boot Murkowski from the GOP portion of the ballot.

Murkowski, one of the Senate’s most moderate lawmakers and only one of a handful of pro-choice Republicans left in all of the legislative branch, has vanquished the more staunchly conservative wing of her party before.

In 2010, after losing the Republican primary to Tea Party-endorsed candidate Joe Miller, Murkowski ran a write-in campaign.

She defeated Miller, who also had backing from former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, on election night, capturing 39.5 percent of the vote, 4 points better than Miller’s 35.5 percent. Democrat Scott McAdams was a distant third with 23.5 percent.

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