National Review Endorses Don Young Challenger

The venerable conservative magazine, National Review, issued a rare congressional primary endorsement in its new issue, supporting Alaska’s Republican Lt. Gov. Sean Parnell in his primary challenge against scandal-plagued Rep. Don Young (R-Alaska).

Per the magazine’s editorial:

Young has become one of Washington’s premier pork-barrel pols, most notably for his advocacy of the infamous “bridge to nowhere.” Despite their self-image as rugged libertarians, Alaskans love federal handouts, and the 74-year-old Young hasn’t faced a difficult reelection in some time. Yet he’s also under an ethics probe involving earmarks, and has spent around $850,000 on legal bills. Many Republicans worry that if Young is their nominee once again he will lose the seat. Now they have a viable alternative in the August primary. [Alaska Gov. Sarah] Palin has endorsed Parnell. So should Alaska’s conservatives.

Young, who has served as Alaska's at-large representative since 1973, is under investigation by the Justice Department over his ties to oil services giant Veco Corp. Republicans have been concerned about holding on to Young’s seat — if he is the nominee — given his recent ethical troubles.

Three Democrats are jockeying to face him next fall, with former state Rep. Ethan Berkowitz viewed as the early favorite. Young fended off his first serious challenge in more than a decade last year, beating an underfunded challenger with only 56 percent of the vote.