Trump Endorses Alaska Gov. Dunleavy With One Caveat: Don’t Back Murkowski

Trump Endorses Alaska Gov. Dunleavy With One Caveat: Don't Back Murkowski Donald Trump speaks into a microphone.

Former President Donald Trump on Tuesday endorsed Alaska Gov. Mike Dunleavy, who is running for reelection in the state's gubernatorial race. (Sean Rayford/Getty Images)

By Charlie McCarthy | Wednesday, 29 December 2021 08:12 AM

Former President Donald Trump's intent to defeat Sen. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, has entered the state's gubernatorial race.

Trump on Tuesday endorsed Alaska Gov. Mike Dunleavy, who is running for reelection. The former president's support, however, has one condition — don’t back Murkowski.

"Alaska needs Mike Dunleavy as Governor now more than ever," Trump said in a statement. "He has my Complete and Total Endorsement but, this endorsement is subject to his non-endorsement of Senator Lisa Murkowski who has been very bad for Alaska.

"In other words, if Mike endorses her, which is his prerogative, my endorsement of him is null and void, and of no further force or effect!"

Murkowski was one of seven Republican senators who voted to convict Trump of inciting the Jan. 6 Capitol attack. The former president has vowed political revenge on those Republican lawmakers who voted to impeach or convict him.

Murkowski is the only senator in the group seeking reelection in next year's midterms.

Trump has endorsed one of Murkowski's primary opponents, former Alaska Department of Administration Commissioner Kelly Tshibaka.

''Kelly Tshibaka is the candidate who can beat Murkowski — and she will. Kelly is a fighter who stands for Alaska values and America First,'' Trump said in June.

"She is MAGA all the way, pro-energy, strong on the border, tough on crime and totally supports our military and our great vets. Kelly is a powerful supporter of the second amendment and JOBS! I look forward to campaigning in Alaska for Kelly Tshibaka. She has my complete and total endorsement!''

Maggie's List, a conservative PAC trying to increase the number of like-minded women serving in Congress, announced Wednesday that it was endorsing Tshibaka over Murkowski.

''I am extremely proud to be endorsed by Maggie's List,'' Tshibaka tweeted. ''The first time the group has endorsed a challenger to a female Republican incumbent. It's time to show the next generation of strong, conservative women that they too can achieve leadership roles.''

Republican Dunleavy will face an open primary in 2022, facing contenders from all parties. State Rep. Christopher Kurka has been the only GOP candidate to enter the race for governor.

The top four voter-getters in the primary will advance to the general election, which will be decided by ranked-choice voting, The Hill said.

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