(CNN) – Sen. Lisa Murkowski appears to be taking her ongoing feud with fellow Alaskan Sarah Palin to the next level, telling CBS the former vice presidential nominee is not worldly enough for the top job.
"I just do not think that she has those leadership qualities, that intellectual curiosity that allows for building good and great policies," the Alaska senator said in an interview that aired Monday. "You know, she was my governor for two years. And I don't think that she enjoyed governing."
The comments came the same day the latest vote count in Alaska now shows Murkowski leading Tea Party and Palin-backed Republican challenger Joe Miller in the contentious Senate race. New results posted by the Division of Elections give 84,563 write in votes to Murkowski, along with 7,601 challenged votes being counted for her.
The family feud surrounding Murkowski and Palin has almost taken on a Hatfield and McCoy-like animus. Palin defeated Murkowski's father, Frank, in 2006 after a divisive gubernatorial primary fight. After a chilly relationship with Sen. Murkowski, Palin backed Miller in his bid to unseat the one-term senator (who was first given the job by her father). Palin was also at times sharply critical of Murkowski throughout the campaign, calling her tactics "shameful."
Should Murkowski ultimately be successful in her write-in effort, she signaled to CBS she may not be the firebrand conservative that some of her colleagues may expect.
"I will tell you, I am not one of those who wants Obama to fail. If he does well, that means the country's doing well," she said. "We don't have time as a nation to spend all of what we do blocking. We have got to figure out how we get to a point where we can be sitting around the table and talking about these difficult problems and advancing some solutions."