Environmentalists have a hard time with Alaska's Murkowski

Conservationists who first cheered the defeat of Alaska Sen. Lisa Murkowski in the GOP primary might be second-guessing themselves after sorting through the scenarios for climate-change legislation that a Murkowski-free Senate might face. SolveClimate points out that Murkowski's not a total denier of a human role in climate change, unlike her GOP challenger, Joe Miller, and others who might rise to positions of power in a farther-right GOP Senate caucus.

She acknowledges the toll global warming is taking on the 49th state, and that kind of Republican moderation could be in short supply when the dust settles after November's elections.

It is also worth remembering that Murkowski co-sponsored a cap-and-trade bill in 2007, voted for an energy committee bill that included a 15 percent renewable electricity standard and is considered a potential swing vote on climate legislation, though not a bill with as much punch as the American Clean Energy and Security Act.

Still, Murkowski can be an environmentalist's nightmare.

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