Lisa Murkowski is the first to win a write-in campaign for the U.S. Senate in more than half a century. But that’s not the important part.
The Alaska Republican is also a moderate who sounds determined to defy the hardline GOP ‘defeat Obama’ drumbeat in Congress and the uncompromising politics of the Tea Party.
Why? Because, she says, that’s what the general election voters who enabled her to triumph over the Tea Party – and her home-state nemesis Sarah Palin – want her to do.
“This was not a Republican campaign. This was Democrats and Republicans and independents all coming together,” Murkowski says in an interview with NBC’s Today show.
“What they said was: ‘We want the consensus-building that I bring to the table. We don’t want governance based on anger or fear. We want governance that comes about when people reach across the table.”
Her Palin-backed Tea Party opponent, Joe Miller, has not yet conceded the race. But Alaska election authorities are widely expected to certify Murkowski’s win later this month.