Trauma Bonding reinforces illusions that the captor is your friend or that you cannot survive without his magnanimity and protection.
May I suggest that Alaskans love Senator Stevens for the same reason a business owner loves the Mafia or, more accurately, the way that an abductee loves his kidnapper: When you think you have no options, when you have been convinced (or have convinced yourself) that you need this person, then your abuser’s gifts sustain you for another day of exploitation. The effort involved in extracting yourself from this exploiter exceeds the benefits of freedom. Perhaps it’s the power of rationalization. Or perhaps it’s is just that the evil you know is better than the evil you don’t know.
Anyway, 106,351 Alaskans did not have the discernment to recognize a criminal; 114,400 did see. Only 3,354 votes, among 11,402 in that latter group, would have taken an election away or, at the least, forced a recount.
Alaska, can you find it in your heart to forgive me?