Democrat Mary Peltola elected U.S. Representative in Alaska’s first ranked-choice election

Published: Aug. 31, 2022 at 5:03 PM AKDT
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FAIRBANKS, Alaska (KTVF) - Alaskans have chosen their next representative to fill the remainder of the late Don Young’s seat in the U.S. House of Representatives.

Mary Peltola has emerged as the winner in Alaska’s first ranked choice election, having taken 51.47 percent of the votes in the last count.

This afternoon, Wednesday, August 31, the Alaska Division of Elections held a livestream on Facebook as the results were tabulated. Division of Elections Director Gail Fenumiai announced Peltola as the winner.

Sarah Palin placed second with 48.53 percent of the votes.

The first votes to be eliminated were write-ins, followed by Nick Begich, who placed third.

Begich’s votes were then distributed among candidates Palin and Peltola, based on who received second ranking on each of Begich’s ballots.

27 thousand of his votes went to Palin, more than 15 thousand to Peltola, and more than 11 thousand voters didn’t specify a second choice, so those ballots were eliminated.

“I’m honored and humbled by the support I have received from across Alaska,” Peltola said in a press release, according to the Associated Press. “I look forward to continuing Don Young’s legacy of bipartisanship, serving all Alaskans and building support for Alaska’s interests in DC.”