November 18th, 2008
10:58 AM ET
7 years ago

An unhappy birthday for Stevens?

 Steven turns 85 Tuesday.

Steven turns 85 Tuesday.

(CNN) - It may not be the happiest of birthday's for Ted Stevens. As the longtime Republican Senator from Alaska marks his 85th birthday, he's fighting for his political life.

Stevens was convicted last month of seven felony counts in federal court.

He's locked in a re-election battle with his Democratic challenger, Anchorage Mayor Mark Begich. Two weeks after election day, the vote counting in Alaska continues. Begich currently leads Stevens by 1,022 votes in the fight for Steven's seat, which he's held for 40 years. Some 24,000 votes remain to be counted, as well as absentee ballots from overseas. The results may not be made final until the first week of December.

Back in Washington, Senate Republicans today could vote to expel Stevens from their ranks. This after a move by Sen. Jim DeMint, R-South Carolina, to force a vote on ousting Stevens from the GOP conference, which would strip him of his committee assignments if he survives his campaign battle and is re-elected.

Stevens is trying to become the first person awaiting felony sentencing to ever get elected or re-elected to the Senate. A federal jury found him guilty of lying about gifts and work on his Alaska home. Stevens says he's innocent and will appeal.

UPDATE: Moments after the GOP senators' meeting began Tuesday, DeMint announced he would put off the vote until after Alaska announces the final tally of the close election. An unofficial tally could come Tuesday night.

Filed under: Ted Stevens
soundoff (281 Responses)
  1. Bruce

    This is a joke, He is a convicted felon, and hsould ahve been removed from office immediatly upon his conviction. If he apeals and is cleared of the charges, then he could run again when the election is held.
    They are just hoping that he wins, then is expelled from the Senate so that Palin can nominate herslef to fill the seat.
    This is a prime example fo what is wrong with the Congress and the politics of this country.
    I was convicted of a felony I would be out of job, but apparently Congress is above the law.

    November 18, 2008 09:46 am at 9:46 am |


    November 18, 2008 09:47 am at 9:47 am |
  3. c b o

    I am confused. So you can be a convicted felon and still hold a senate seat? It seems crazy as I know you can not even vote in New York (Not sure about other states) if you have been convicted of a felony.

    November 18, 2008 09:48 am at 9:48 am |
  4. Brit in Japan

    This crook shouldn't even be eligible to stand for a senate post.

    November 18, 2008 09:48 am at 9:48 am |
  5. Carrie C.

    Why don't we just let Alaska secede already? They've brought us nothing but headaches for the past 6 months, and no one's gonna miss them at this point....I'm good with changing the flag, if it means not having to deal with the Palins and the Stevens of Alaska ever again. You go, Todd!

    November 18, 2008 09:49 am at 9:49 am |
  6. Doug R.

    Ted Stevens (R- Alaska) is a convicted felon and criminal. How can this person serve in the United States Senate?? He's a federal felon.
    A good Birthday present for him would be to lose the election and be hauled off to federal prison, where he belongs.

    November 18, 2008 09:50 am at 9:50 am |
  7. TC

    Senator Stevens is too old to still be in the Senate anywhere. I think the main problem with the US Government is we allowed these people to stay in office too long. We need term limits for the Senate and Congress so we can keep people with new and fresh ideas running this country not people that are so old and stuck back in time and can barely walk or spell their names.

    November 18, 2008 09:50 am at 9:50 am |
  8. Marion

    The reason he won't concede is because, if he does, Begich wins, and the Democrats pick up another seat. If he hangs on, wins the election, then is either expelled or resigns, then Sarah Palin gets to name a replacement, who will undoubtedly be a Republican.

    And before anyone asks, Palin cannot appoint herself, but she can resign as governor, have her lieutenant governor become governor, and then the new governor could appoint her. So, if Stevens manages to win the election, watch for Palin to resign, probably for "personal reasons".

    November 18, 2008 09:50 am at 9:50 am |
  9. Virginia

    With terms on airline pilots in reference to AGE, it's time to think about this for the government. 85 years old. Come on. It's time to say it was a good gig, now it's time to step down. If people can't judge this themselves, set some limits on them. Please!

    November 18, 2008 09:51 am at 9:51 am |
  10. Jos/TN

    we shouldn't be discussing Ted Stevens, he should have his prison stripes, or is he above the law, pure arrogance

    November 18, 2008 09:51 am at 9:51 am |
  11. Jon

    This goes far beyond party politics. Ted Stevens is a convicted felon and a disgrace to the Senate.

    The Senate should convene a special session to expel this thug from its midst. It was extremely brazen of him to run again, given the indictment, which was issued last year.

    November 18, 2008 09:51 am at 9:51 am |
  12. chuck

    IT looks like a COWBOY country in Alaska.You have a convicted senator who still wants to lead, an IDIOT for a Govenor who has her husband making decisions for her,abusive crime is on the increase,unmarried pregnancy is like everyday life,certain parts of Alaska they throw the garbage into the ocean,oil money is being given away which needs to be stopped immediately,wild life is being destroyed and many more things and now you have votes still not being counted --only in America.I hope the DEMS have type security over the uncounted ballots. I say Palin Must be REPLACED by someone with GREAT KNOWLEDGE to make Alaska what it should be for the country just like any other state in the USA. The best birthday gift that Stevebs could give himself is QUIT POLITICS,grab some nappies and wait his turn in JAIL.

    November 18, 2008 09:51 am at 9:51 am |
  13. linda from South Dakota

    there comes a time when your story is over,, time to retired stevens,,,, enjoy life and let it go,, ya do the crime,, ya serve the time,,,

    November 18, 2008 09:52 am at 9:52 am |
  14. Jamie

    I share my birthday with Ted Stevens...not sure if that is a ood thing or a bad thingf

    November 18, 2008 09:52 am at 9:52 am |
  15. Jon

    To Grog: We are not talking about term limits here; we are talking about refusing to seat a convicted felon. I would have refused to seat him had he served only one term, or been newly elected.

    November 18, 2008 09:53 am at 9:53 am |
  16. Warden

    What kind of birds don't fly? Jailbirds! Say "goodnight" Ted

    November 18, 2008 09:53 am at 9:53 am |
  17. Michael "C" Lorton, Virginia

    Happy Birthday Senator Stevens–The Bush Administration is waiting to deliver your birthday present--a Pardon.

    November 18, 2008 09:53 am at 9:53 am |
  18. Alaskan Fame Junkie

    Well boo hoo for him.

    November 18, 2008 09:54 am at 9:54 am |
  19. Andy

    Tom asked "Why is it taking them so long to re-count votes?"

    Well, its Alaska, they had a hard time find enough people who can count.

    After all, who else would knowingly vote for a convicted felon.

    November 18, 2008 09:54 am at 9:54 am |
  20. Jeff

    The most widely used phrases in American politics. (In order.)

    1.) "I will not comment because I have not seen the report."
    2.) "The case is under adjudication, so I have no comment."
    3.) "I am confident I will be found innocent of all charges."
    4.) "These charges are false, and are hurting my family."
    5.) "I'm retiring from politics to spend more time with my family."
    6.) "I have disgraced my family and my country."
    7.) "I have found God."
    8.) "I intend to return to the world of politics."

    November 18, 2008 09:55 am at 9:55 am |
  21. Derek in NY

    What a way to celebrate a birthday! At 85, way to many candles for a cake. He should do one candle per felony....

    November 18, 2008 09:55 am at 9:55 am |
  22. Ted, Washington DC

    Power is the ultimate aphrodisiac because it corrupts completely. Arrogance and recklesness are its offsprings. Washington is the spawning ground. Limit the terms or time work in Washington is the only antidote albeit not a panacea. We should all feel for the Senator not for resorting to the unvoidable but for being unlucky in being elected for so many terms. The man is down, down to the level of his knee.. Leave him alone and he will find his way and time to give an end to his ordeal.

    November 18, 2008 09:55 am at 9:55 am |
  23. ldk

    I'm glad not be a Republican. As it is, this bozo makes me ashamed to be an American.

    November 18, 2008 09:55 am at 9:55 am |
  24. Mary

    Virginia has term limits on our Govenor. It keeps them on their toes. They do not have time to get cozy with special interests and pad their pockets like Senators and Representatives do. Such as Ted Stevens and too many more to name. Democrats and Republicans.

    TERM LIMITS WOULD SOLVE A LOT OF OUR PROBLEMS. PORK, CAMPAIGN FINACE, LOBBYISTS. Call your representatives and demand term limits.

    November 18, 2008 09:56 am at 9:56 am |
  25. Barbara in NC

    Jan – you regurgitating the same old crap on every post is getting to be old. The subject of the blog doesn't even matter to you.

    I wish you would get a life and quit obsessing about things that have been resolved and debunked a long time ago. You may need to seek professional mental help.

    November 18, 2008 09:57 am at 9:57 am |
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