Sunday, October 24, 2010

RE Lisa Murkowski Endorsement: The Anchorage Daily News Editorial Board's Problem Is Obvious

Today, the Anchorage Daily News editorial board endorsed Lisa Murkowski, write-in candidate for the US Senate seat she now holds.
The editors listed their reasons, which seem to consist mostly of loving them some "good old days Lisa," when she behaved like a political moderate.  She isn't anymore.

In what cave have these ADN "political pundits" been living?  It's apparent they've performed no real research, just drank deeply from the Tea Party Express kool-aid... and believed the  "Lisa's a RINO" mantra.

Lisa Murkowski has acted like anything but a moderate, especially in the last two years.  Without Ted Stevens running interference for her, Lisa has become nothing more than a lackey for Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell.
On matters of public policy, on votes that have hurt Alaska, she has marched lock-step with the senate GOP (and I use the term loosely) leaders, whose only mission is to block whatever President Obama tries to accomplish.  The GOP doesn't care if they hurt America or (in Lisa's case) Alaska.  "Beating Obama" is their ONLY agenda.

So, ADN "pundits," since you're too lazy to do a little fact-checking, here's part of Lisa Murkowski's "moderate" pedigree:

  • Lisa voted to spend the entire Social Security surplus. 
  • Lisa put tax cuts for the rich ahead of shoring up the Social Security Trust Fund. 
  • Lisa voted to allow using the Social Security Trust Fund to pay off the national debt. 
  • In 2007, Lisa voted against allowing Medicare to negotiate lower drug prices. 
  • Lisa voted to kill an amendment to allow government to negotiate drug prices through Medicare.
  • Lisa voted to cut Medicare by $6.4 Billion and Medicaid by $4.8 Billion. 
  • Lisa voted for GOP Budget that cut $10 billion from Medicare and Medicaid.
  • Lisa Voted Against $26.1 Billion In Medicaid And Education Funding For States That Was Paid For By Closing Foreign Tax Loopholes.
  • Lisa voted against important Alaska projects in her position on the Appropriations Committee:
• $2 million for Alaska coastal communities to combat coastal erosion
• $500,000 for the Alaska Eskimo Whaling Commission
• $1 million for the Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium to buy medical equipment for the medical center
• $1 million for the Alaska Railroad
• $500,000 to replace a community health center in Anchorage
• $500,000 to fund an Alaska Medicare clinic in Anchorage
• Millions for harbor and dock infrastructure projects in cities like Bethel, Coffman Cove, Homer, Kenai, Kodiak, Petersburg, Port Lions, Soldotna, and Valdez
On Alaskan Native Health Care:
  • Lisa Voted Against Funding for IHS. 
  • Lisa Opposed Billions for Indian Health Clinical Services.  
  • Lisa voted against the Reauthorization of the Indian Health Services. 
(An aside - Nice job of canceling a candidate's forum and just endorsing Lisa, AFN.  She's really looking out for the people you're supposed to represent.)

  • Lisa voted against $10,000,000 in funding for the Denali Commission (but she continues to claim credit for bringing home the bacon - her campaign posted a statement on 10/15/10 that continues to claim credit for the funding that she voted against).
  • Lisa voted against $400,000 in funding for a sexual assault response team center in Anchorage that she had earlier praised Lisa voted against an essential funding bill that provided $400,000 specifically for a Sexual Assault Response Team Center in Anchorage. However, Lisa had issued a press release lauding the money that she then voted against.
  • Lisa voted against $200,000 in funding for Abused Women’s Aid in Crisis, in Anchorage, that she earlier praised. Lisa voted against a funding bill that included $200,000 to improve infrastructure at a center that serves victims of domestic violence. Lisa issued a press release claiming credit for securing the money that she then voted against. 
  • Lisa Voted Against The American Recovery And Reinvestment Act Of 2009 ... BUT takes credit for it: According to her Official Senate website, “Senator Murkowski is pleased that many Alaskan School Districts are also using federal funds from the stimulus bill, or the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, to establish preschool programs in their schools.” 
  • Lisa voted against funding for Head Start and better after-school programs Lisa repeatedly voted against funding for Head Start, a program that provides important educational, health, and nutritional services to low-income children.
  • Lisa sided with corporations and against Alaska’s kids Lisa voted against closing corporate tax loopholes and using that money to increase Pell Grants, which help Alaskan students attend college. In the same plan, she voted against increasing student loan forgiveness for math and science teachers that would help improve school performance while encouraging Alaskans to become teachers.
I could go on, but unless you're a complete idiot, I think you get my drift: 
Lisa has performed exactly like his supporters expect Joe Miller to perform.
Weirdly, the ADN "sages" dismissed Scott McAdams thusly (emphasis mine):
Her Democratic opponent, Scott McAdams, is articulate and reasonable. He has grown in this campaign from electoral cannon fodder to credible candidate. Alaskans will see more of him on the political stage, and that's good. But this is not his time. A half-dozen years as a small-town school board member and mayor in a weak-mayor system is too thin a resume for the challenges of the U.S. Senate in 2010.
So explain to me, exactly, ADN smart people:  Since God Forbid, the last thing we want is an "articulate and reasonable" U.S. Senator, how is it that Murkowski's "experience" helps her meet the "challenges of the U.S. Senate in 2010"?

Bowing and scraping to Mitch McConnell is hardly "a challenge." 

Standing up for Alaska is.


Anonymous said...

The ADN also wrote that Murkowski has now learned the center is where she belongs thanks to this experience. Really? She has learned that she must be even more rabidly right in order to win the Republican primary next time, and not have to bother with a write-in candidacy. Does the ADN honestly think that if Lisa is elected, she'll go to Washington and stake out a moderate position as a Republican? She voted with McConnell 90 percent of the time and still lost the primary for being too moderate. And what was that fiction ADN came up with about Murkowski not just saying no to health care, but instead coming up with a solution? I have no problem with the ADN endorsing Murkowski, but they failed to give many, if any, good reasons for doing so.

Wolfe Tone said...

Anon @ 1:04: You've summed it up nicely.

Anonymous said...

You write as though their decision was merely based on their perception of her abilities and positions relative to the other candidates. I suspect perceived economic impact on the ADN also played a role in this and looking 'objective' to the readers by not always endorsing Democrats. Going with McAdams would have been a bold move for them and they don't do many bold moves.

Wolfe Tone said...

Anon @ 10:18:

You've pointed out a major flaw in my thinking... that "abilities and positions relative to the other candidates" should be the basis for decision making.
What in hell was I thinking? :)

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