The defeat of Republican Sen. Lisa Murkowski by an upstart fiscal conservative in the GOP primary could mark a significant shift for a state that has so long relied on federal pork to survive.
The outcome was also an unexpected blow to the seniority Alaska has enjoyed in the Senate. Murkowski spent eight years in Washington.
When she finishes her term, that will leave the state with only Democrat Sent. Mark Begich, who is still building tenure.
Likely to join him is Joe Miller, a Tea Party conservative who campaigned against spendthrift government spending and narrowly defeated Murkowski in the August vote. He is favored to win in November.
University of Alaska Fairbanks political science professor Jerry McBeath says now Alaska will have virtually no influence in the Senate.
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