WASHINGTON (AP) -- Sen. Lisa Murkowski says she saw it coming, even before the public scolding last weekend at Alaska's Iditarod dog sled race.
Siding with Republican leaders on a contentious contraceptives vote was a mistake.
A moderate in an era of bitter partisanship, Murkowski may be a natural heir to the centrist role played by retiring Maine Sen. Olympia Snowe at a time when their party is hurting for female leaders.
Others say she first needs to show more decisiveness and consistency.
Murkowski voted in favor of an amendment by Sen. Roy Blunt to overturn President Barack Obama's order that health insurance cover the cost of contraceptives even if providers object on religious grounds. She was backpedaling within days.