While Tara Sweeney, a Republican, won 54% of the northernmost regional vote in Alaska in District 40, there were just not that many votes cast so far — just 1,234 altogether in the special primary election to temporarily fill Alaska’s empty congressional seat. Over 108,000 votes were counted late Saturday night in the special mail-in-only election. That was her stronghold and even with similar results in next-door District 39, it was not enough for her to break into the top four in the special election, in spite of having the most money spent on her campaign and the independent expenditure group supporting her. Sweeney not making the top four was one of the bigger surprises in the election results from the June 11 special primary.
Most election analysts believe the final four who will appear on the August 16 ballot for this temporary seat will be Sarah Palin, Nick Begich, Al Gross, and Mary Peltola.
House District 38, out in Western Alaska, was Mary Peltola country. She took the most votes in her home region, with 44%. Palin got 13.87% and Begich got 13.24%.
House District 37, the Bristol Bay and Aleutian Island region, went solidly for Palin, 31.52%, even though it is represented by state Rep. Bryce Edgmon, who was a Democrat until dropping the D from his name a few years ago, while still caucusing as a Democrat. House District 37 is 44% Alaska Native, and yet over 54% of the vote went to Republicans.
Meanwhile, down in the Ketchikan area, the southernmost populated region of Alaska, 2,288 votes were counted so far, with Sarah Palin winning 33% of the vote, Al Gross winning 20.3% and Nick Begich taking third place at 17.46%.
As for Juneau, Gross, who is in third place overall, did best in his hometown, where he got 25.8% of the vote. Begich came in second there, with 12%, and Palin at 11.5% of the 3,915 votes cast.
South Eagle River House District 14 went more for Begich, with 23.21%, and Palin with 17.64%. Gross placed third, 13.79%.
The rest of Anchorage saw Palin and Begich sharing over 50% of the vote, almost evenly, with 25.84% for Begich and 25.53% for Palin. Overall in Anchorage, Palin underperformed against her statewide average of 30%.
North Eagle River voters leaned into Palin, who over-performed her state average, with 32.34% of the vote in House District 13. Begich won 24.26% in this, his hometown.
Anchorage Assemblyman Chris Constant, in his home neighborhood of House District 20, only won 13.27% of the vote. The Democrats in Constant’s district ignored the Alaska Democratic Party endorsement of Constant. Instead, Republicans got over 33% of the vote even in downtown Anchorage. No-party candidate Gross got 14.88%, followed by Begich at 14%, and Palin at 12.52%.
In Wasilla House District 10, it was heavy Palin country; some 70% of the vote went for Republicans, with Palin getting 45.66% and Begich getting 22.1%.
The top 4 of the 48 candidates on the special primary election will go on to an Aug. 16 special general election, which will be decided by ranked-choice voting.
The Division of Elections will release additional counts on June 15, 17, and 21. To date, 134,697 ballots have been received, with 4,772 of those ballots rejected by the board that is overseeing the ballots, for over a 3.4 percent rejection rate. More results at this link.
Every single one of the 48 candidates on the ballot received some votes.