Despite polls showing Sen. Lisa Murkowski with a small lead in the AK Republican Senate primary, one day after election day, she trails her tea-party backed challenger, Joe Miller, by about 2,000 votes. The race is too close to call–and absentee ballots still need to be counted–but even if the majority of absentee voters cast their votes for Murkowski, her victory is not guaranteed. But Mr. Miller ain’t on Easy Street either. His 2,000 vote lead could be severely cut by absentee ballots, even giving Murkowski the win. Either way, this election will be really close, and both sides will be lawyering up in the event that this thing goes to the courts.
The strength of Mr. Miller’s support shows the electorate’s discontent with incumbents. That, plus Sarah Palin’s enduring popularity in Alaska (though noticeably less than during her time as Governor, when she had 70%-80% approval).