Republican Kelly Tshibaka Announces U.S. Senate Challenge to Murkowski

March 29, 2021

(ANCHORAGE) – Alaska conservative Kelly Tshibaka today announced her candidacy for the United States Senate, setting up a 2022 Republican challenge to Sen. Lisa Murkowski, a career politician who inherited her Senate seat from her father when he appointed her nearly 20 years ago.

Born and raised in Alaska, Tshibaka represents a new generation of Alaska conservatives, in stark contrast to Murkowski, who is best known for being a dependable vote for Democrats during almost two decades in the Senate. Tshibaka has spent her career exposing fraud and abuse in government and has been the Commissioner of Administration for Alaska Gov. Mike Dunleavy since January 2019. She thanked Gov. Dunleavy for the opportunity to serve the people of Alaska and has resigned from her position as Commissioner.  

“We know what Washington D.C. thinks about Alaska: We’re here for their benefit, and we won’t put up much of a fight. After nearly 20 years in D.C., Lisa Murkowski thinks the same way,” Tshibaka said in an announcement video released this morning. “But you know what? Nothing scares the D.C. political insiders more than the thought of a strong, independent Alaskan leader in their ranks. One they can’t bully. One they can’t control. One they can’t silence.”

Tshibaka is running to rebuild the Alaskan economy, to defend and rejuvenate small businesses, and to fight to protect the jobs of thousands of Alaskans in the energy industry, which is under assault by the leftists in Washington, D.C. She will be a strong voice in opposition to illegal immigration and will fight to preserve the 2nd Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. She will be an advocate for the military, coming from a family which has fought in major American conflicts from the Vietnam War to the Revolutionary War. Tshibaka is unapologetically pro-life.

“I believe in a better future for Alaska. One we can rise up together and rebuild,” Tshibaka said. “I’m running for the Alaskans who believe government is of the people, by the people, and for the people. The D.C. insiders need to be held accountable to us.”

Murkowski literally inherited her seat in the Senate from her father, former Gov. Frank Murkowski, who appointed her to fill his own unexpired term in 2002 after he was elected governor. As a result, there has been a Murkowski in the Senate since the first year of the Reagan Administration. Lisa Murkowski has built a career on being a D.C. insider, caring more about her image in Washington than in what happens back home. Earlier this month, the Alaska Republican Party voted to censure Murkowski for her vote to convict President Donald J. Trump in his recent impeachment trial.

Murkowski has worked against Alaska’s interests in many ways:

  • Enabled Joe Biden and his radical agenda to end drilling and kill Alaska jobs.

  • Voted to allow illegal immigrants who violated laws to enter and remain in the country.

  • Voted against commonsense judges.

  • Voted to keep Obamacare, leading to higher costs and fewer choices in healthcare.

  • Voted to remove President Trump from office even though his term had already expired.

“It is time we had a U.S. senator who represents Alaska to Washington, D.C., rather than one who represents D.C. insiders to Alaska,” Tshibaka said.

Tshibaka grew up in Alaska, with a father who was a union electrician and Vietnam War veteran, and a mother who was one of the first workers at the startup of Prudhoe Bay. Her parents were homeless and living in a tent at one point but fought their way into the middle class.

Tshibaka graduated from Stellar Secondary School in Anchorage and was the first in her family to pursue a college degree, beginning her studies at the University of Alaska Anchorage before graduating from college and then law school. Prior to working in Gov. Dunleavy’s administration, she was the Chief Data Officer for the Inspector General of the U.S. Postal Service under Presidents Trump and Obama. She also has served as Acting Inspector General for the Federal Trade Commission, counsel to the Inspector General in the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, and in the Office of Inspector General of the Department of Justice. She lives in Anchorage with her husband, Niki, and their five children.