Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin said Wednesday that she would consider serving in the Senate if God gave her the opportunity and Alaskans wanted her to take the job. The state's senior senator, Republican Ted Stevens, held a dwindling lead as the count resumed in his re-election bid.
Stevens, who has been in the Senate for 40 years, led Anchorage Mayor Mark Begich by just over 3,000 votes when the Election Day count ended last week. His lead narrowed to less than 1,000 votes Wednesday as Alaska election officials counted the first 28,000 of an estimated 90,000 absentee and provisional ballots.
Even if he is re-elected, Stevens could be ousted by the Senate for his conviction on seven felony counts of failing to report more than $250,000 in gifts, mostly renovations on his home. If Stevens loses his seat, Palin could run for it in a special election. She also could challenge incumbent GOP Sen. Lisa Murkowski in 2010.
Palin, who was the GOP vice presidential nominee, has two years left on her term as governor. She told CNN's Wolf Blitzer on Wednesday that she wants to serve her constituents the best she can. “At this point it is as governor,” she said.
“Now if something shifted dramatically and if it were, if it were acknowledged up there that I could be put to better use for my state in the U.S. Senate, I would certainly consider that,” she said.