Bad Penny Returns: Joe Miller. Again.

Would You Buy This Guy As a Candidate?

Would You Buy This Guy As a Candidate?

Back in January 2011, WC noted that Joe Miller had finally, more than a year after the election, conceded that, yes, Lisa Murkowski had won. WC named Joe Miller “Bad Penny.” WC predicted that, like a bad penny, Joe Miller would keep turning up.

Unfortunately, WC has been proven right.

Miller has a strange mix of paranoia, an unseemly need for approval and appalling, blind arrogance that makes him keep running for office. Those same character traits have also led Miller into some pretty serious errors, long since documented here and elsewhere. A better adjusted personality wouldn’t have tried stuffing a digital ballot box. And then lied about it when caught. And then tried to hide it – sued to hide it – while running for the U.S. Senate. Among many, many other sins of omission and commission.

In 2014, that strange mix of flaws drove him to run for Mark Begich’s seat. He lost again, this time to an opportunistic carpetbagger in the Republican primary, Dan Sullivan. Now Bad Penny is back again.

This time his desperation has led him to disavow the Republican Party and run as a Libertarian. Or a Not Really Libertarian. It’s impossible to reconcile all of the claims Bad Penny has made in his last two U.S. Senate campaigns with the Libertarian platform. So either he’s disavowed all those prior claims or he is a LINO, a Libertarian in Name Only. It occurs to WC there’s a third possibility: Joe Miller doesn’t really believe in anything, except whatever he thinks may serve his purpose at the moment. That may be the most likely explanation.

Shame on the Alaska Libertarian Party, too, for enabling Joe Miller. The party threw its own candidate, Cean Stevens, under the bus, in order to embrace Bad Penny. Never mind that Miller has never won a general election, has more warts than Mrs. Proust and, on the evidence, has no principles whatsoever beyond desperately wanting to get elected.

Dermot Cole sees an analogy to the late Wally Hickel’s run as an American Independence Party candidate with Jack Coghill back in 1990. But Bad Penny is no Wally Hickel.

WC predicts that this U.S. Senate contest will end for Joe Miller the same way the last two have: Miller will lose. Again. WC also predicts Bad Penny will return yet again. Driven by that weird combination of paranoia, arrogance and need for approval.

Maybe you’ve heard of Harold Stassen? He ran for U.S. President nine times, as well as a host of other offices. And lost every time.1 Bad Penny is Alaska’s Harold Stassen. Without Stassen’s principles or record of public service.

A political bad penny.


  1. He did win the governorship of Minnesota in 1938. And lost every other election afterwards. 

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