THE FALLOUT UP NORTH…Now that Palin’s on the McCain ticket, the already interesting-bordering-on-absurd House and Senate races in Alaska are going to become more so. This year, the seats belonging to Rep. Don Young (who’s been in office for 35 years) and Sen. Ted Stevens (40) are in play for Democrats for the first time in decades. Young and his primary challenger, Lt. Gov. Sean Parnell, are currently awaiting a ballot recount in the narrowly contested Republican primary–if Young wins, he stands a better chance than Parnell of losing to the Democratic challenger, Ethan Berkowitz. Stevens, meanwhile, is trailing his Democratic challenger Mark Begich, and is due in federal court in late September on corruption charges.

Palin’s VP nod makes all of this even more interesting. There was talk of her taking Stevens’s place on the Republican ticket in the general election if Stevens is found guilty, and it’s probable she would have beaten Begich–so this is good news for Democrats in the Senate. Parnell, meanwhile, would presumably take over as governor if McCain/Palin wins.

Support Nonprofit Journalism

If you enjoyed this article, consider making a donation to help us produce more like it. The Washington Monthly was founded in 1969 to tell the stories of how government really works—and how to make it work better. Fifty years later, the need for incisive analysis and new, progressive policy ideas is clearer than ever. As a nonprofit, we rely on support from readers like you.

Yes, I’ll make a donation