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Alaska senator Lisa Murkowski: Palin lacks ‘intellectual curiosity’ to be president

By John Byrne
Tuesday, November 16, 2010 8:27 EDT
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When a member of your own party criticizes you, it’s certainly not the end of the world.

But when a member of your state’s own Washington delegation is about to put a verbal knife in your back, you may want to turn around.

In an interview with CBS’ News Katie Couric, Alaska Sen. Lisa Murkowki said she wouldn’t back former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin for president because Palin doesn’t pass her smell test: she says she’s short on “leadership qualities” and “intellectual curiosity.”

“You know, she was my governor for two years, for just about two years there, and I don’t think that she enjoyed governing,” Murkowski told CBS. “I don’t think she liked to get down into the policy.”

She said she’d rather see in her presidential pick a person who “goes to bed at night and wakes up in the morning thinking about how we’re going to deal with” important issues.

“We just don’t really have much in common – I mean, we don’t talk to one another,” she said later in the interview.

“We have common interests in a shared love for our state, and I would like to think that if there were an opportunity to help do something good for Alaska, she would call me, or I could call her,” Murkowski added. “But in fairness, she is not really that keyed into the state anymore. She is looking, obviously, at a bigger pond, and so we don’t see her up north as much.”

Murkowski’s criticism of Palin isn’t surprising — Palin backed her opponent in a viciously fought race for Alaska’s Senate seat. The former Alaska governor threw her weight behind Tea Party favorite Joe Miller, who won the Republican primary in her state. Murkowski appears to have cruised to victory as a write-in candidate, a remarkable feat.

In an Oct. 25 blog post titled, “Lisa’s Gall vs. Miller’s Honor,” Palin unloaded on Murkowski and called for her supporters to give money to Miller.

“We need to send a message that we’re not going to stand for this arrogant sense of entitlement and business-as-usual Beltway corruption,” Palin wrote. “Joe needs our help to fight back against the influx of special interest money. Please join me in donating any amount you can spare to Joe’s campaign by clicking here. He can lead once he gets to D.C., but he’ll need our help to get to there.”

Murkowski isn’t the only prominent Republican to lay it thick on Palin.

In an interview with the UK-based Telegraph at the end of October, former George W. Bush advisor and Republican strategist Karl Rove said voters were unlikely to see someone who has her own reality TV show as a good candidate for president.

“With all due candor, appearing on your own reality show on the Discovery Channel, I am not certain how that fits in the American calculus of ‘that helps me see you in the Oval Office,’” he said.

Videos of Murkowski’s comments follow.

 
 
 
 
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