Politics & Government

Rift between Palin and Begich growing

Sarah Palin at an Interior Department hearing on oil exploration in Anchorage, Alaska, Tuesday, Apirl 14, 2009. With her is Alaska U.S. Rep. Don Young. Associated Press.
Sarah Palin at an Interior Department hearing on oil exploration in Anchorage, Alaska, Tuesday, Apirl 14, 2009. With her is Alaska U.S. Rep. Don Young. Associated Press. Associated Press

Gov. Sarah Palin's commissioners on Wednesday blasted Alaska Sen. Mark Begich as "uninformed" after he expressed frustration that a natural gas pipeline to the Lower 48 hasn't moved forward.

Former Gov. Frank Murkowski also weighed in with an opinion column asserting Palin's approach to getting the gas pipeline is a waste of time that's stalled progress.

Murkowski, whom Palin trounced in the 2006 Republican primary for governor, has long been at odds with his successor. Palin's relationship with Begich, a Democrat, also appears to be increasingly sour.

This is just the latest flare-up.

In April, Palin said Begich should give up his Senate seat to a special election after prosecutors abandoned their case against Ted Stevens, whom Begich beat last fall.

Then last month Begich slammed Palin for turning down federal stimulus money for energy, saying her claim of strings attached seemed "little more than a political red herring targeted at an agenda other than Alaska's."

This latest fight follows comments that Begich made earlier this week during a speech in Anchorage. The speech was mostly about Begich's recent trip to Afghanistan but he mentioned the gas pipeline, focusing primarily on his desire for President Obama to put it on "the national energy agenda."

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