ANCHORAGE, Alaska — Sarah Palin took aim at U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski as she sought to rally Alaskans Thursday for Murkowski's beleaguered GOP rival, Joe Miller.
Palin avoided using Murkowski's name in addressing the hundreds of people gathered in Anchorage for a "Change D.C." rally but it was clear who she meant. In describing Miller's two chief rivals in the race, she said one is an "out of touch liberal" and the other was mayor of Sitka. The latter is Democrat Scott McAdams.
"Let's send Joe Miller to the United States Senate to shake it up," she called out to cheers, adding later: "Let's restore America with honor."
Palin, who gave Miller a peck on the cheek after introducing him, was lending her star-power to a candidate who's seeking to overcome a series of campaign bumps. In recent weeks, Miller has acknowledged his family received some of the types of government payments he now questions as a limited-government candidate. This week, records released under court order, after news organizations filed suit, showed Miller had admitted to lying about improperly using government computers for political purposes while a borough attorney in 2008. He was disciplined and took responsibility for what his superior considered an isolated incident.
A number of other conservatives, including former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee; South Carolina Sen. Jim DeMint; and U.S. Rep. Michele Bachmann, R-Minn., offered their support for Miller in videos.
Palin singled out Murkowski, in particular, as trying to distract voters' attention by questioning Miller's record and honor to avoid talking about the issues facing the state and nation and the need to change the status quo in Washington.
Murkowski mounted her run after losing the Republican primary to Miller. She, Miller and Democrat Scott McAdams are currently locked in a heated race.
A Murkowski spokesman referred a reporter to a statement Murkowski released before the rally, in which Murkowski said Miller "knows that he has lost the confidence of Alaskan voters."
During a debate Wednesday night, Murkowski told a statewide audience she wouldn't support a Palin run for president at this time.
According to the Anchorage Daily News, Joe Miller also invoked a weapon from his "arsenal": prayer. The paper reports:
Those who are criticizing him "represent the way of the past, not the future," Miller said, and again called on his supporters for their prayers for his victory over Democrat Scott McAdams and Sen. Lisa Murkowski.
"There's one other thing that we have in our arsenal," he said. "That thing we have in our arsenal is prayer. Now I want you to pray like you've never prayed before."