The election tally isn’t complete, and already people are speculating on 2016, when Sen. Lisa Murkowski will be up for re-election. The National Journal quoted Jim Lottsfeldt, long-time friend of Mark Begich and the person who headed up the pro-Begich super-PAC, as saying that Begich is already considering running against Murkowski, who will likely see a challenger on her right in the 2016 primary. Here’s Lottsfeldt:
“He is already plotting. I’ve spoken with him and he hasn’t made up his mind, but if he doesn’t prevail he’s certainly considering his options in 2016.” (Begich’s campaign declined to comment on the senator’s future plans.)
Perhaps not coincidentally, Murkowski is making some changes to her staff. Althea St. Martin, from Murkowski’s Fairbanks office, is retiring. Former Murkowski and Ted Stevens staffer Jimmy Parrish will be taking her place. Also, staffer Sonia Henrick is moving from Ketchikan to Anchorage, to “enhance my work in the entire Southcentral region,” Murkowski said in a press release. The release indicates that more changes might be in the works.
Clarification: The piece originally said that according to Lottsfeldt, Begich was plotting against Murkowski. Lottsfeldt said that wasn’t true to what he said, which was that Begich is generally plotting his future in 2016, which could include a run against Murkowski or Rep. Don Young. It might seem a small distinction, but it’s a distinction and an important one.