Warning Sign or Fluke? Sara Palin Loses In Alaska to Democrat, Turning Seat Blue For First Time in Decades

Warning Sign or Fluke? Sara Palin Loses In Alaska to Democrat, Turning Seat Blue For First Time in Decades

Former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, who was backed by Donald Trump in her bid to keep the state’s sole congressional seat red during a special election this week, has lost, according to Wednesday reports.

But so, too, did the other major Republican candidate in the race, handing the seat to a Democratic challenger for the first time since the early 1970s.

Mary Peltola, a Native American, will serve the remainder of former GOP Rep. Don Young’s term after he passed away at the age of 88 earlier this year.

Is Peltola’s victory a sign of things to come in November? Is a Democrat winning the sole House seat in a red state Trump won by 10 points in 2020 a problem for the GOP? That depends on how you look at it.

Sure, Democrats are going to spin this victory in their favor by claiming that Trump is a cancer on the Republican Party and that Peltola’s victory is an affirmation of the ‘great job’ that Joe Biden and the Democratic congressional majority are doing for the country. They’ll say that with a straight face despite the fact that Americans (and Alaskans) can see, daily, the devastating effects of Bidenflation, a chaotic southwestern border, rising crime in major cities — and did we mention high gas and food prices?

But the real culprit is Alaska’s goofy “ranked choice” electoral system voters approved in 2020.

“The special general election for the vacant seat in Alaska, which was held on Aug. 17, used ranked-choice voting, a measure approved by Alaska residents in 2020 that dismissed the state’s previous election method consisting of partisan elections ahead of general elections. Due to the measure’s approval, all candidates in the special election appeared on the same ballot,” Fox News reported.

“Ranked-choice voting allows voters to rank candidates in order of preference on their ballots. Should one candidate receive a majority of first-preference votes, that individual is declared the winner in the race. However, if no candidate wins a majority of first-preference votes, the candidate with the fewest first-preference votes is eliminated. Following the elimination of the candidate who received the least amount of first-preference votes, voters’ second-preference choices are evaluated and a new tally is established to determine whether a candidate in the race has received a majority of the vote. That process is repeated until a candidate wins a majority of the vote,” the report added.

As noted from the then-unofficial results, Palin and fellow Republican candidate Nick Begich split the GOP vote, which — taken in total — far outnumbered Democrat votes for Peltola.

Peltola, Palin, Nick Begich, and Chris Bye will face off in another ranked-choice election in November to see who will then serve the next full congressional term.

So again, while Democrats will spin this as a ‘major upset’ and ‘turning point’ for Biden and his party, the Republican majority in Alaska can take back the seat and keep it red by coalescing around a single GOP candidate.


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