A two-part centerpiece to Murkowski’s general election strategy is to invoke the memory of the late Senator Ted Stevens — who had been a Murkowski backer before he died in a plane crash in August and is widely revered across the political spectrum in Alaska — while simultaneously attempting to coalesce the support of Alaskan voters who have unfavorable opinions of Palin.
Murkowski spokesperson Steve Wackowski noted in an interview that Murkowski did not join Palin in condemning Stevens and calling on him to resign his Senate seat after he was convicted on federal corruption charges in 2008 (the convictions were later voided after the prosecutor in the case was found to have committed gross misconduct).
“She was the only Alaskan politician who stood by Ted in his hour of need,” Wackowski said. “And oh yeah, by the way, Sarah Palin did throw him under the bus. She was one of the first ones to do so.”