Two Republican Senate candidates in Alaska refused to sign an anti-amnesty pledge during a Sunday debate.
Conservative candidate Joe Miller asked his two opponents to sign a pledge that reads, “I will oppose any attempt by Congress or the President to grant amnesty (any pathway to citizenship) for illegal aliens.”
Former Alaska Attorney General Sen. Dan Sullivan (R-AK), who is supported by Karl Rove and other pro-amnesty Republicans, and Lt. Gov Mead Treadwell, who has said he supported a pathway to citizenship, refused to sign it. According to the Associated Press, Treadwell has criticized Miller for linking illegal immigrants to increased gang activity.
Ahead of the August 19 primary, Miller is reportedly “emphasizing immigration as he tries to break out of what most observers believe is third place in the heated primary fight.” For instance, “he has been highlighting his support from Maricopa County, Arizona, Sheriff Joe Arpaio, a well-known immigration hardliner.”
Miller won the GOP Senate nomination in 2010 over establishment Republican Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-AK), but Murkowski decided to run as a write-in candidate in the general to defeat Miller. The winner of this year’s primary will battle vulnerable Democrat incumbent Sen. Mark Begich (D-AK).