- Associated Press - Saturday, May 3, 2014

JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) - Alaska’s lone U.S. House member says his desire to get a Republican elected to replace Democratic U.S. Sen. Mark Begich isn’t personal.

U.S. Rep. Don Young said it’s about ensuring Harry Reid is no longer Senate majority leader.

Young made his comments after addressing the state Republican convention. Republicans see Alaska as key to their efforts to reclaim control of the Senate. The House is currently controlled by Republicans.

During the speech, Young called Reid a “puppet” of President Barack Obama, and said if he stays majority leader, there will be a continued “downslide” of the nation.

He said if Republicans aren’t successful in their efforts to defeat Begich, he will probably have a lifetime job. He later told reporters it’s tough to beat an incumbent past the first term.

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