Trump backs Murkowski challenger Kelly Tshibaka

Top line

Continuing his enmity with Republicans who voted to impeach him over the Capitol riots in January, former President Donald Trump endorsed Sen. Lisa Murkowski’s challenger Kelly Tshibaka on Friday. 2022 Race for the United States Senate in Alaska.

Key facts

Trump’s endorsement of Tshibaka was expected: in March, the former president saying would campaign against Murkowski in 2022 and Tshibaka, like many candidates to win Trump’s backing, has doubts expressed on the results of the 2020 elections.

Murkowski is “bad for Alaska,” Trump said in his statement endorsing Tshibaka.

Trump did not mention Murkowski’s impeachment vote in his statement, criticizing the senator for her vote to confirm Biden’s secretary of the interior.

Tshibaka, Alaska Commissioner of Administration, “is MAGA all the way,” Trump said, praising the candidate for being “pro-energy, strong on the border, tough on crime” and in support of the military.

Key Background

Seven Republican Senators voted to convict Trump in January, but Murkowski is the only one facing re-election next year. Tough primaries are familiar territory for Murkowski, who in 2010 lost the Republican Senate primary just to run and win. Murkowski has previously stated that he is confident in his chances of defeating a Republican challenger next year due to the state’s new voting system in which Murkowski will compete against candidates from all parties in a open primary. The top four candidates will advance to the general election. In a statement after voting to convict Trump, Murkowski said the former president “set the stage” for the riots by doing “everything in his power to stay in power.”

Crucial appointment

Four days after the election for President Joe Biden was called, Tshibaka wrote a opinion piece for local output Must read Alaska in which he repeated several of Trump’s discredited electoral fraud conspiracy theories. Tshibaka argued that the deceased people voted in the elections and that voting machine failures shifted the votes to Biden, among other claims. “In short, at this juncture, the election officially (and legally) remains indeterminate,” Tshibaka wrote on November 11. “Tensions are high, tempers are raging and our political divisions are deep.”

Surprising fact

Tshibaka once wrote favorably on gay conversion therapy and claimed that homosexuality was caused by “childhood sexual abuse,” CNN. he found.

What to watch out for

How Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) Responds to Trump’s Endorsement. McConnell’s super PAC, the Senate Leadership Fund, endorsed Murkowski in April.

Main critic

When asked during an interview with Fox News last week if he would “appreciate” Trump’s “participation in the midterm elections,” McConnell replied that the former president “has his own agenda.”

Other readings

McConnell on whether to ‘welcome’ Trump’s help during the 2022 midterm elections: ‘Well, he has his own agenda’ (Forbes)

Republican who questioned the election results will challenge Murkowski in the primaries (Forbes)

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