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Murkowski’s Camp Claims Backing on K Street

Supporters of Sen. Lisa Murkowski’s quixotic write-in campaign to keep her Senate seat said they will find significant support within the K Street lobbying community of Washington, D.C., with one operative saying that lobbyists are pledging to support her bid because of the “extreme message” of her GOP opponent.

According to a Murkowski campaign source, the Senator held a conference call Saturday afternoon with K Street allies from “all sides of political spectrum,” who are unanimously opposed to GOP nominee Joe Miller, a lawyer and tea party favorite who beat the incumbent by 2,006 votes in the Alaska Republican primary last month.

While declining to say who was on the fundraising call, the source said the overriding theme of the participants’ comments was clear: “We don’t want the extremists to hijack the Senate seat in Alaska.”

But if Murkowski is indeed building financial support among the business community for her write-in campaign, potential supporters risk defying recent edicts by the Senate Republican leadership and the National Republican Senatorial Committee to rally behind Miller, their party’s nominee. Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (Ky.) has voiced his support for the tea party candidate, while NRSC Chairman John Cornyn (Texas) said recently that he is “deeply disappointed in Sen. Lisa Murkowski’s decision to ignore that clear message and wage a write-in candidacy.”

Cornyn said, “The NRSC stands firmly behind Joe Miller’s nomination, and we will ensure that he has all of the resources that he needs in order to win this November.”

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