A Day After ABC Highlighted Sarah Palin's Political 'Losing Streak,' Her Candidate Closes in on Stunning Win
A day after highlighting Sarah Palin's political "losing streak," Good Morning America's Jon Karl on Wednesday acknowledged the stunning turn in Alaska's Senatorial primary race: "But Joe Miller is a Tea Party candidate who had Sarah Palin's support. He, now, is ahead." [MP3 audio here.]
Karl on Wednesday didn't mention anything about the former governor's "losing streak" ending.
Instead, co-host Robin Roberts spun the results as a "GOP family feud." She also questioned the effectiveness of the grass roots organization, wondering, "So, is the Tea Party getting stronger? Weaker?" (Roberts' evidence was John McCain's victory in Arizona. However, he, too, was supported by Palin.)
On Tuesday, Karl highlighted: "But, lately, Palin's been on a losing streak. Over the last five weeks, Palin-endorsed candidates have lost in Georgia, Tennessee, Kansas, Colorado and Washington State. Palin's candidate in Alaska is a hard-line Tea Party conservative."
He also made sure to point out, "Miller has also been known to attract assault weapon-baring weapon supporters at his political rallies."
On Wednesday, Karl acknowledged, "And take a look at what Sarah Palin tweeted just a little while ago. Clearly giddy about the results so far, she said, 'Keeping fingers crossed, powder dry, prayers upward.'"
A transcript of the August 25 segment, which aired at 7:02am EDT, follows:
DAVID MUIR: And this morning, primary shakeup. Sarah Palin and the tea party rally in Alaska. Threatening a long-time senator. But the establishment prevails in Arizona as John McCain cinches another nomination. We have overnight results coming in.
MUIR: Just coming in, these results from overnight. And a real split decision for the voters.
ROBIN ROBERTS: Yeah. And we're also seeing that it's being described as a GOP family feud, looking at the results. As Republicans fight over Sarah Palin's Tea Party candidates.
And nothing highlights the internal battle more than Tuesday's primary in Alaska where the Tea Party support led to a stunningly tight race.
But, in Arizona, you see, anti-Tea Party sentiment led to a sweeping loss. So, is the Tea Party getting stronger? Weaker? We're going to take a closer look.
ROBERTS: But, we begin with results in Tuesday's key primaries. In Alaska, Lisa Murkowski struggled to keep her job in a tight race with Tea Party candidate Joe Miller. Backed by Sarah Palin, he was.
In Arizona, Senator John McCain easily won renomination against another tea party candidate, J.D. Hayworth. And in a Democratic race in Florida, Representative Kendrick Meek beat newcomer Jeff Greene.
So, what does it all mean? Well, senior congressional correspondent Jonathan Karl joins us now with more from Washington. And, Jon, a lot of eyes still on that race in Alaska this morning. Very tight.
KARL: Robin, this is the story of the day. It's still way too close to call. But we may be witnessing a colossal upset in the making. Lisa Murkowski is a member of the Republican leadership in the Senate.
She was supported by virtually the entire Republican establishment. Had way more money. But Joe Miller is a Tea Party candidate who had Sarah Palin's support. He, now, is ahead. But this may take weeks to actually count. And look at what Sarah Palin tweeted just a little while ago.
Clearly giddy about the results so far, she said, "Keeping fingers crossed, powder dry, prayers upward. But Joe Miller just tweeted, 'What's moose hunting like inside the beltway?'"
ROBERTS: Stay tuned. All right. That's the situation right now in Alaska. In Arizona, no real surprise that John McCain was renominated. Though he had to spend $21 million in this campaign, which is more than all of his previous Senate races combined, going back to 1986.
But the real surprise here is Ben Quayle, the son of Dan Quayle, going for a congressional seat. And he was very aggressive in his ad campaign. Take a look, Jon.
BEN QUAYLE: Barack Obama is the worst president in history.
ROBERTS: Very strong tactics that seemed to work, Jon.
KARL: It sure did. He was really behind going into this. And he was attacked for allegedly contributing to a pornographic website.
But the other thing in that race, Robin, is that his parents, Dan and Marilyn Quayle, in the home stretch, came to his aid. Sending out letters to supporters. Defending his honor. Defending his integrity.
ROBERTS: Yeah. They were hot under the collar about that. All right. One more race to talk about. Down in Florida, surprises there, too, Jon.
KARL: Yeah. And the big thing there is you had Kendrick Meek, Democratic congressman, decisively win the nomination to run for Senate, beating back a multimillionaire named Jeff Greene, who had vastly outspent him.
But, now, you're going to see one of the marquee, most important, toughest, expensive Senate races in the country, in Florida, that will pit Meek, against Republican Marco Rubio, and former Republican, now independent, Governor Charlie Crist. That's going to be a big race.