Alaska's Libertarian Candidate Won't Step Aside for Murkowski

JUNEAU, Alaska -- If Alaska Republican U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski decides to re-enter the race to retain her seat, it won't be as a Libertarian.

That party's Senate candidate, David Haase, told The Associated Press on Monday that he's not stepping aside. Haase would have had to withdraw his candidacy by Wednesday to clear a spot on the party's ticket.

Murkowski campaign manager John Bitney said Monday that Murkowski "wasn't anticipating" going the Libertarian route.

Murkowski, who lost the GOP nomination last month to tea party-backed Joe Miller, has said that friends of hers approached the Libertarians, asking whether they'd consider putting her on the ticket.

Should she opt to stay in the Senate race, Murkowski could still do so as a write-in candidate.