Alaska Senator Lisa Murkowski joined the crowd the other day to bust Trump’s balls on Twitter about Orange-man’s infantile tweets against MSNBC super-flyweights Joe Scarborough and Mika (soon to be Mrs. Joe) Brzezinski. Here’s what the soon-to-be less frigid Alaskan’s Republican in the Senate had to tweet:
Couple that with Murkowski’s recent vote-against-the-grain to deny moron Betsy DeVos the post of Education Secretary and you have what might be an actual maverick-in-the-making Senator (as opposed to an ersatz one like John McCain.)
Some background. After her father Frank resigned his position as Alaska’s junior senator Lisa joined the Senate in 2002. How did that happen? Frank resigned from the Senate to become governor of the state, and as such was in the Constitutional position to appoint someone to take his place – in this case, his daughter. She went on to face the voters in 2004 and won.
But six years later when her term was to expire, Lisa ran for re-election and was defeated in a primary by a Tea Party dude named Joe Miller who was championed by political savant Sarah Palin. Bravely, Murkowski soldiered on and pursued a quixotic write-in campaign. And though she captured just 39 percent of the vote, since the tally was divided among three candidates, it was good enough to prevail. She became the first successful write-in candidate for a Senate seat since the mid-1950s.
Although she got roughly zero support in her 2010 campaign from the Republicans and owed them nothing she chose to caucus with them after defeating the loathsome and litigious Miller. That was not required, but she did it.
At the time of this writing, Murkowski is pro-choice and pro-same sex marriage, and seemingly against Trumpish asshole-ism. Coming from Alaska she has to be pro on guns and drilling for oil and all that, but we at Major Terata believe Murkowski – one of the few female Rep Senators who continually gets treated like a back-bencher – has to be getting a bit sick of the “old boy” action in the body of which she is a member.
Could Murkowski be in the mood to pull a Bernie Sanders (VT) or Angus King (ME) and become an Independent who caucuses with the Dems? Is that a crazy notion?
Such palace intrigue has been common in New York where Democrats hold 32 seats in the Senate against the Republican’s 31, but because 8 of the Dems caucus with the Reps, the Reps run the show. It’s pure rancid politics all the way, but it can give a the discontented an opportunity to exercise power and wield influence.
Given her views, Murkowski might wish to be on the other side of the aisle. But what woman in her right mind would leave the majority and all its trappings to stumble into the wilderness of minority Dem status? No one – unless she had some fellow travelers. Two come to mind: Susan Collins (ME) and Don Heller (NV).
Collins has long been to the left of her Rep colleagues, and like Murkowski took issue with Trump’s stupid social media antics. She manages to survive because she is holding down a red seat from the mostly blue Northeast that would normally be in Dem hands, but she’s closer to Dem thinking than several actual Senate Dems. And Heller is suddenly on every Rep’s shit list for being the only Rep Senator who took a stand against the fugly Obamacare repeal bill because it would be bad (unlike troglodytes Ted Cruz and Rand Paul who came out against it for being too damn generous.) Heller is also up for reelection next year and is extremely vulnerable – as a Republican. (Perhaps if he switched out in time… then again, that didn’t work so well for Arlen Spector of the Keystone State.)
Still, what if Murkowski, Collins and Heller decided together to caucus right now with the other side? Because they have scruples and can no longer abide the foolishness of their leaders.
What if just three senators followed their hearts and bolted? The Dems would instantly have a 51 seat majority and run everything in the Senate. Such an outcome would be 10 times better than impeaching Trump and allowing Cyber-organism Pence to take over a Republican-dominated Congress.
Could such a thing happen? Two years ago, would you have said “President Trump” could happen?
What a Difference 3 Days Make
New Jersey is among several states that have Constitutional mandates to install a balanced budget every year starting on July 1. That is to say, the Governors and their Legislatures have 365 days to come up with a budget that each can swallow.
Of course, many can’t seem to muster the wherewithal to accomplish this basic task, and like NJ this year start off another July without a closed budget. Brinksmanship ensues. Miserly shutdowns of public services follow (despite the fact that essential services can somehow be maintained). In NJ’s case, the illustrious public servants chose to shut down – on the July 4th extended holiday – public beaches.
Today we learned that what was an intractable, inscrutable problem to solve in 365 days was eminently solvable in 368. How very odd.
Sadly, showing no sign of shared suffering you might expect from a normal political leader, absentee governor Chris Christie lolled about a stretch of verboten beach during a period in which mere Jersey mortals were barred from the famous shore and instead turned to reruns of Snookie and The Situation styling their armpit hair.
Imagine: if Christie had a scintilla of political savvy he instead of Trump might now be BLOTUS.