Official Portrait


Sen. Lisa Murkowski says she saw it coming, even before the public scolding last weekend at Alaska’s Iditarod dog sled race. Siding with Republican leaders on a contentious contraceptives vote was a mistake.

A moderate in an era of paralyzing partisanship, Murkowski, 54, may be a natural heir to the centrist role played by retiring Maine Sen. Olympia Snowe at a time when their party is hurting for female leaders.

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“I think she’s in a position for that kind of role if she wants it,” Sen. Ben Nelson, D-Neb., another fleeing centrist, said of Murkowski.

Others say she first needs to show more decisiveness and consistency.

Murkowski voted in favor of an amendment by Sen. Roy Blunt, R-Mo., to overturn President Barack Obama’s order that health insurance cover the cost of contraceptives even if providers object on religious grounds. She was backpedaling within days.

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Read more at Official Wire. By Laurie Kellman, AP.