Kenai Assembly overrides veto of vote-by-mail



Norm Blakely, an Assembly member in the Kenai Peninsula Borough, wants voters on the peninsula to decide whether the borough should move to a mail-in election.

It’s not right that just six people on the Assembly have decided to take local elections in a new direction, he says.

Blakely’s petition for a referendum on mail-in voting comes after the Kenai Peninsula Borough Assembly voted 6-3 Tuesday to override Mayor Charlie Pierce’s veto of the vote-by-mail ordinance. He needs 1,362 signatures to get it onto the October ballot.

The Assembly had passed by the vote-by-mail ordinance on June 3 and again on reconsideration on June 16.

Pierce’s veto, had it stood, would have axed the creation of a hybrid in-person and by-mail election for the borough. The hybrid system means every registered voter in the borough will receive a mail-in ballot, starting in 2021.

The ordinance also changed rules pertaining to runoff elections, giving the borough election office more time between a regular election and a runoff election to get ballots in the mail.

In Mayor Pierce’s veto note, he said that the public deserves the opportunity to vote on such a wholesale change to the election system. He said that the security of ballots and the opportunity for fraud would also increase if ballots were mailed out to people who had not requested them.

Only Norm Blakely, Kenn Carpenter and Jesse Bjorkman voted to uphold the veto. But the other six Assembly members were enough to override it.

Voter fraud took place recently with absentee ballots in District 15 Anchorage, when numerous ballots were submitted by voters who were dead or not living in the district during the legislative race in 2018. Rep. Gabrielle LeDoux won that election but is now facing felony and misdemeanor charges for her role in the voting scam.

Mayor Pierce said that having just six people in the borough change the entire election system erodes trust.

“I vetoed this, as I think it was the right thing to do. People should be allowed to vote on their fate of going to vote by mail or not. The Assembly overrode my veto last night. Assemblyman Norm Blakely is leading the effort to gather 1300 signatures to get this back on the ballot so that the people of this Borough, not just six assembly folks, can decide the fate of Borough-wide Vote By Mail,” Pierce said.


  1. Kenai is fortunate to have Pierce and Blakley. I wish the Valley did. And, certainly Anchorage.
    I still want Kristi Noem as governor, though. : )

  2. I supported Mayor Pierce’s veto and am steadfastly against this ordinance that affects my community

    Here are undisputed facts:

    1. The Kenai Peninsula Borough Clerk’s Office does a GREAT job of assisting those that seek, for ANY reason, an Absentee ballot. Here’s what you might not know: You don’t have to be ‘absent’ to vote absentee! It’s just the ‘name’ of the ballot. Once requested the official ballot will be mailed directly to you; you just have to request it

    2. This Ordinance will mail +50,000 ballots to addresses in the Kenai Peninsula Borough based on (faulty) State of Alaska Voter Registration rolls. Sadly, the most recent KPB election had less than 11,000 participants……

    3. The population of the Kenai Peninsula Borough is 58,708 person with 45,499 ages 18 and above. How can there truly be a need to mail +50,000 ballots to all registered voters within the borough?

    4. Ok, this isn’t a fact but rather a supposition: if utilizing a ‘push’ method of balloting is such a great idea, why not use it for PFD distribution? “Once I’m on the PFD “Roll” why do I have to re-apply every year?”

    This opinionated commentor thinks there should a minimum amount of effort required by the Voter in order to participate in something as important as electing our government officials. Requesting such a ballot to complete from the safely of your own how at your convenience is not too high of a bar for a responsible voter

    • Wow…if those numbers are right, the assembly and the borough clerk have some explaining to do….how can there be over 50,000 mail out ballots and only 45,000 voting age residents. That should be reason enough not to go down this path

    • Duane, that’s all very interesting. I don’t see support for mass mail-in voting among people I know. This assembly needs to be replaced. Let’s find some good people to run for these seats.

  3. Currently the petittion is under legal review. Pettition booklets will have to be turned in by July 27th, per local reporting.

  4. Leftists know they have no chance at victory in a ‘real’ election. That is the only reason they want the ‘mail in’ voting. It can and will be manipulated. Desperation reeks in the democrat gambit to ‘fool the vote’ and provide a situation where every Alaskan that votes will have that vote potentially stolen or misrepresented. The democrat/socialist way. All is fair, to them. This is a nation wide scheme that has proven to be unreliable and has been stricken in many areas of the country, with democrat indictments for intentional voter fraud in the ‘mail-in’ fraud. One glaring clue is, “only leftists want it”. Why would that be? Not the wuhan v. That is the greatest hoax ever perpetrated on America. democrats are trying to ‘one-up’ that with ‘mail in’ voting.

    • Well said and this is so true. People have a hard time believing that their friendly left wing neighbor or family member would be ok with corrupt elections, so long as their side won- but they are. Most (not all, but most) right wing voters would actually be opposed to winning that way. ALL left wing voters have NO problem with fraud-just as long as their side wins. Power for powers sake. Ends justify the means. Etc etc. it’s sick, and it’s real.

  5. The leftists on the Kenai Peninsula Borough assembly need to move to Seattle where they can form their own little autonomous zone and make up their own sucky laws. A sad fact about the assembly is that the voters are uninformed and just assume that the person on the ballot has good intentions. Then, we get crappy representatives like this group.

    • Ok. Alaska is a must have an ID state to vote. Each mail in ballot will have to be checked for legality. Might have the election results by Christmas.

  6. Once there is only Vote By Mail, all is lost. Kenai will resemble the Chicago dead voting. Folks, you had better hurry up and get that petition done or your vote will be neutralized by fraud.

  7. Proud of you peninsula folks who are standing up against this ordinance. How did these assemblymen ever get elected?

  8. When this great country was founded, only qualified people could vote. The qualifications were: own land and be a white man at least 21 years old. The qualified voter went to a set location to cast his ballot. Now almost anyone can vote, including a woman who lives in an apartment. And now they want to allow her to vote by mail. Ridiculous. If someone is too stupid or lazy to walk to the physical site for voting, and too lazy to stand in line.for a few hours, and too afraid of getting the Kung flu, they must be a democrat. Good Americans don’t trust the mail.

Comments are closed.