In Homer, moderate incumbent mayor Ken Castner, who is a fiscal hawk and registered Republican, appears to have won reelection over liberal challenger Donna Aderhold. The percentage was 59-40 for Castner.
At the same time, both conservative candidates for city council may have lost to liberals, but there are many votes yet to count. There is a mathematical possibility the percentages could reverse for the two seats.
Aderhold, as a sitting council member and registered nonpartisan, has one more year left on the council, where she fought for making Homer a sanctuary city for illegal immigrants. Her message didn’t play well with the majority of votes.
A key difference between Castner and Aderhold is that Castner is reluctant to break a tie on the council, and has only done so sparingly, while Aderhold said she would be fine breaking a tie vote as a type of super-council member.
1,837 voters took part in Tuesday’s election out of 5,268 possible voters in the two precincts — about a 35 percent voter turnout.
The two liberals that appear to have seats on the City Council are incumbents Rachel Lord and Carolyn Venuti.
The two conservative candidates, Raymond Walker and George Hall, actually made a good showing, running on a platform of bringing balance to the council. Walker and Hall are within two points of tying with Venuti. The six-member council is dominated by five liberals.
There are 799 absentee ballots are yet to be counted. The final count, including absentee and questioned ballots, will be conducted Oct. 12.
Homer Precincts 1 and 2 are made up of 1,242 Republicans and 832 Democrats. There are a high number of undeclared voters in the two precincts.
In Homer, the Kenai Borough Assembly attempt to move borough elections to a mail-in system were defeated.