Begich plans secret poker strategy for 50th birthday

Sen. Mark BegichMark BegichEx-Sen. Kay Hagan joins lobby firm Unable to ban Internet gambling, lawmakers try for moratorium Dem ex-lawmakers defend Schumer on Iran MORE (D) seems to be taking his upcoming 50th birthday in stride, telling ITK, “I’m still breathing. That’s a good sign.”

The junior senator from Alaska, who will be on a plane back home when he turns the big 5-0 on Friday, is placing his bets on his relatives putting together a Vegas-style bash.

“More than likely, according to what my wife has told me, her sister is setting up a birthday-party dinner/poker game with the family. I’m all for that,” says Begich.

But don’t expect his family to rig the poker tournament so the birthday boy wins. Begich is going for an entirely different tactic — losing big time: “The idea is to make them feel sorry so they buy me more gifts!”