Palin Won’t Rule Out Senate Bid

Posted November 16, 2008 at 12:11pm

Alaska Republican Gov. Sarah Palin on Sunday declined to rule out running for an open Senate seat if GOP Sen. Ted Stevens, who was convicted late last month on seven felony counts, is expelled or resigns.

However, Anchorage Mayor Mark Begich (D) continues to lead Stevens in an ongoing vote count. If that lead holds, he will take the seat in January to begin a six-year term.

Should Stevens win and then leave the Senate, under Alaska law Palin would be able to call a special election within 60-90 days. She said that while she feels she has a contract with Alaskans to serve the remaining two years of her term, she said she would consider running if it appeared that Alaska voters wanted to send her to the Senate.

“I just don’t want to close any doors at this point,” she said.

Palin might also be able to appoint a temporary replacement for Stevens if he left the Senate, though the law on this is not clear, according to the Anchorage Daily News. Either way, Palin said on CNN that she would not appoint herself.