The Alaska Republican Party has lifted its censures on two elected Republicans. The action came via vote of the officers during the state central committee meeting on Saturday in Anchorage.
That means Sen. Lisa Murkowski, who was censured by the party in 2021 for voting to convict former President Donald Trump after his second impeachment trial, is back in good graces with Alaska Republican Party.
Although Murkowski endorsed Democrat Mary Peltola for Congress, rather than a Republican, and although she resigned from her honorary position with the party in 2016 over her objection to then-presidential nominee Donald Trump, the state political party has accepted her return as their most senior elected leader.
Murkowski, who is pro-abortion, pro-Respect for Marriage Act, and generally pro-Joe Biden, has essentially defeated the Alaska Republican Party.
The party has also admitted defeat to Sen. Mitch McConnell, who fought against the state party’s choice of Tshibaka, and spent $7 million to shore up Murkowski and defeat the state party’s nominee.
The party lifted the censure of Sen.-elect Kelly Merrick, who won over Republican Rep. Ken McCarty this year for the state Senate seat to represent Eagle River.
Merrick has the support of Democrats and big labor unions, but was censured by the party two years ago after she organized with the Democrats in the House, where she has served for four years, in exchange for a co-chair on the Finance Committee.
Saturday’s votes included an agreement to not censure candidates until after the 2024 State Convention, which will be held in Anchorage.
There was also a change to the party to allow endorsements in local municipal and borough races, which are nonpartisan.
Last week, District 27 Republicans censured their senator, Sen. David Wilson, for caucusing with the Senate Democrat-controlled majority in the Senate.