The Washington Times - April 21, 2008, 04:12PM

Mark Begich, a Democrat and mayor of Anchorage Alaska, today said he plans to run against Alaska Sen. Ted Stevens, the longest serving Republican in the U.S. Senate.

Begich faces an uphill money battle against Stevens, a powerful fixture on Capitol Hill and former chairman of the Appropriations Committee.


Democrats are hoping to capitalize from Stevens’s embattled reputation. He is under federal investigation for his ties to an oil contractor convicted of bribing state lawmakers. Last fall FBI and Internal Revenue Service agents raided his Anchorage home.

“It’s rare that we see a challenger raise as much money as an incumbent, but what we’ve see is that money is just one piece of the puzzle,” said Matt Miller, a spokesman for the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee. “We’re going to help Mark Begich in any way possible. We are 100 percent behind his candidacy.”

The National Republican Senatorial Committee launched a Web site pointing out Begich’s tax history, which includes repeated late payments.

A request for comment from the Begich campaign was not immediately returned. You can watch his campaign announcement below: Carrie Sheffield, Web editor, The Washington Times