Red wave washes through Florida, fades in the heartland, and barely reaches Alaska

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By SUZANNE DOWNING

The U.S. Senate isn’t the red wave conservatives hoped to surf this election season. As of Wednesday, the Senate control is at a standoff with Democrats and Republicans each having 48 seats. 

Georgia faces a runoff, and Nevada and Arizona are not yet wins for Republicans. Vice President Kamala Harris could return as the tie-breaker when the new session starts in January, and Sen. Chuck Schumer may very well return as majority leader. 

Alaska Sen. Lisa Murkowski, a less-than-reliable Republican, is paddling back to Washington to rejoin that McConnell minority, thanks to Alaska’s open primary and ranked choice voting that set her up to fend off challenges from both the right and left. Sen. Minority Leader Mitch McConnell pulled her to an almost certain victory with his $7 million spend.

In the U.S. House races, Republicans look to take control, but not by as wide a margin as they had planned: 204 seats went Republican, and 176 went Democrat. It appears Alaska Rep. Mary Peltola will join the minority Democrats.

Thus, Alaska has one of the most incoherent results of all 50 states: A solid Republican governor, who is pro-life and pro-freedom, won handily. A Democrat-embracing senator who is Alaska’s version of Neville Chamberlain, will return to the political fold of President Joe Biden and Sen. McConnell. To top it off, a far-left Democrat who supports gun control and would vote to pack the Supreme Court is a lock for the House of Representatives.

It’s all still up in the air, thanks to counting delays caused by Ballot Measure 2 of 2020, which ushered in the combination of a jungle primary election and a ranked choice voting general election.

How does Sen. Murkowski win when she is slightly behind Kelly Tshibaka? Murkowski, who was opposed by former President Donald Trump and censured and alienated from the Alaska Republican Party, will win with a big helping of second-round votes of Democrat candidate Pat Chesbro. 

That was the plan from the beginning, of course — find a weak and compliant Democrat to run as a placeholder. Democrats represent 12.8% of registered voters, which is why Murkowski and the Democrats have had a symbiotic relationship; neither can seem to live without the other.

Murkowski’s opponent from the right, Tshibaka, did yeoman’s work as a first-time candidate, keeping Murkowski from reaching the magic 50%+1 threshold needed to avoid going into the instant runoff rounds of counting, a process which will not take place until Nov. 23.

Now to the House: Rep. Peltola, a member of the party with a small fraction of registered Alaska voters, is poised to win with second-round votes from Sarah Palin and Nick Begich. There is still a snowball’s chance that Palin or Begich could pull off a Thanksgiving miracle, when the ranked choice race results get reshuffled, and when Libertarian Chris Bye is eliminated, with his voters’ getting to have their second choice counted.

There is a bright spot in all this. Gov. Mike Dunleavy, who was endorsed by Trump but ran his own race during this election cycle, is easily heading for an historic second term, the first time a Republican governor has won reelection in Alaska since Gov. Jay Hammond in 1978. 

Among the three disparate statewide election results, his is a sweet victory for Republicans, who watched in frustration as he was hounded by a savage recall campaign that started against him just 12 weeks after he took office in 2018, and which hobbled his first three years. 

Dunleavy is the win that conservatives in Alaska can cherish. Even so, Alaska Republicans don’t have a lot to crow about in 2022. The GOP lost its endorsed Senate and House candidates, and has ceded to a Democrat the one congressional seat the state has, a seat the majority party had held for nearly 49 years.

While not a disaster for the red team, the Nov. 8 election has given 49th state conservatives a case of the post-election blues.

Suzanne Downing is publisher of Must Read Alaska.

70 COMMENTS

  1. We will see how the second round goes. Murkowski is a shoe in at this point, but with Peltola. I’m praying that enough voters in each camp were able to put aside their grievances and recognize the looming problem Democrat power poses.

  2. Alaska is pretty screwed up though. Sorry, but it’s true. Rank choose? Who does that? Keep a rhino on…come on! State house and Senate in bed together with red and blue plaid sheets. Not to mention the PFD theft fiasco. Alaska is still a state where the pie has many slices, and everybody feeds, just not evenly cut.

  3. I can honestly say this People you have friends out their who are not who you think they are. They might have firearms couple pistols, AR15’s, snow machines, hunt , fish, etc. You always thought these people were solid republicans good ol red blooded Americans. Why talk politics you knew Bill was voting republican. Well they aren’t, For years they held a dark secret they are in fact democrats. Now they are emboldened and are no longer afraid to hide they will tell you. Some these individuals came out of the closet back in 2020 when they proudly boasted how they voted for Joe Biden. So don’t stand around going awe shucks what happened. Its been happening for years. When they tell you why the vote democrat be prepared to have your mind blown. How do I know cause it happened to me yesterday I was absolutely floored. The cherry on top is when they said we need to stop right wing extremism. There is no reasoning with them, the one issue they are voting on you will never change their mind.

  4. Nationally–the big winner was DeSantis. The big loser was Trump–whom I hope is doing some serious self-reflecting. If he wanted to do something great for America now, he needs to announce he is not running–and eventually throw his support behind DeSantis–who I see is one of a rare few to combat the dems who are fully under the control of the globalist elites.

    As for Murky and RCV–they are both a pox on us. Not to mention McTurtle, who I would love to see ejected from leadership.

  5. Suzanne, I like your comparison of Princess Lisa to Neville Chamberlain!
    .
    But for strict historical accuracy, I think she is much closer to Tokyo Rose, who was both a notable propagandist as well as an infamous traitor.

  6. Palin was never serious about being our Congress person, as evidenced by her never bothering to educate herself about the state’s issues, and not campaigning 1/10 as hard as Begich did.
    By staying in the race instead of dropping out and urging her cult of supporters to vote for Begich, she was nothing but a spoiler, and helped give us Peltola.
    Thanks for yet another stab in the back, Sarah…..

  7. Welp, I voted NB #1 and SP#2, KT and no others, DL for governor. I flipped on SP because she flipped on us…IMHO the endorsement by(*trigger warning*) alphabet “humans”(“folks”, “personnel”, “entities”, “furries”…etc…sorry not following but what descriptor is in vogue this week?) who don’t know which bathroom to use. I feel like this was the death nail for the SP campaign. Real hairbrained move to appeal to that(them, those??? I quit with this, free speech cannot be compelled or it is no longer free speech),anywho it needs saying. I can’t be the only one who saw that move by the SP camp as a real hurdle to voting for her a second time as primary…

  8. The big victory for Alaska was ConocoPhillips having rebuilt their capital base and hopefully bringing the Willow Field online with 200,000 to 300,000 more barrels down the pipeline. The big fight now will be stopping any new changes to oil industry taxes from our State and Federally.

  9. Mike Dunleavy is the new “Captain Zero”. If his opposition had consisted of reasonable, reliable, and rational candidates, he would not have stood a chance. Unfortunately Bill, Les, and that guy from Kenai were nothing to get excited about.

    [I know I frighten you in public situations and you are always motivated to exit “Stage Right” (as we observed again today), Mike, but you really need to grow a spine and get over yourself.]

    • People- be careful what you wish for leaders with a spine. Anchorage has 10 assembly members minus one heading to the senate who all used their “spine” pulling a fast one over us without a thought about us. Now we have 13 or 15 out of 20 house democrats plus 3 new dem senators cut from the same fabric of the 10 anchorage leftist assembly. I’m thankful to God the incoming legislature is 10/9 split and 20/20 split, the red has man power to push back and maintain a balence of power, i pray the red don’t compromise.

  10. Legislature needs to rescind RCV but highly unlikely given that the whole process stinks to high heaven. We need to put maximum pressure on them to codify this in a Bill and have Dunleavy sign it finally doing something good for this state. I only hope he grows a spine and makes the Legislature follow the 90-day conference and get the work done for the State. We will probably not get any help from DC since Palin came back to Alaska and screwed us out of representation in the House. How you can send someone to represent us with only 40% of the votes cast in their favor just shows how stupid the voters are in not understand that RCV has nothing to do with Outside Dark Money.

    • Good points. District 6 rep, Sarah Vance (the good Sarah…) plans to introduce legislation to repeal RCV. Give her all your support. RCV certainly did its scam-job and hopefully other states will learn from what happened here and not adopt it. If they do, our electoral process will become one enormous mess and render the whole idea of fair elections into oblivion. Which, of course, is the plan by our globalist masters…

  11. “Now to the House: Rep. Peltola, a member of the party with a small fraction of registered Alaska voters, is poised to win with second-round votes from Sarah Palin and Nick Begich. There is still a snowball’s chance that Palin or Begich could pull off a Thanksgiving miracle, when the ranked choice race results get reshuffled, and when Libertarian Chris Bye is eliminated, with his voters’ getting to have their second choice counted.”

    But they have to win by 50% +1, right? If people ranked the red, is there not still a chance for a Palin or Begich win?

    And waiting until November 23rd is BS in my book! Ranked choice voting sucks!

  12. Post election blues?
    I’ve never underestimated the idiocy of the Alaskan voter.
    Sure there are some who “get it”. But there are many more LIV’s out there that are beholden
    to Uncle Sugar.
    Reap what you sow. I’m going to hunker down and try to survive the best I can until the
    madness passes.

  13. Dear Alaska Legislature and Governor Dunleavy,

    You’re number 1 priority in January is to repeal RCV. Get it done; no excuses.

      • I want the freedom to have CLOSED primaries and pick our candidates and keep the vipers out. Had we done that and not allowed the RCV trojan horse in–we would be done with the election and not having this conversation. I don’t think you understand how the primary process should work.

        • 1,000% agree.
          If you are not a registered member of the party, you should have no say in who represents that party on the general election ballot. That privilege belongs to members of the party.

          • So you want the freedom to give your choices to a political club to determine for you, and everyone else.

            That’s giving up on freedom

    • I never expect anything out of Juneau except gridlock on the important issues and more spending. We’re going to have to fix the RCV fiasco with a Ballot Measure.

  14. Interesting point about Governor Dunleavy not embracing Trump or making wild claims that the 2020 election was stolen from him. Seems like embracing that would have brought his days in office to an end, based on many of the Lower48 and the Alaska races.

  15. Spot on Suzanne! Rank Choice Voting has paid its dividends for our dear Senator Murkowski. She blew up the entire state, so she could get back to hugging it out with Senator Feinstein in D.C. She has allowed Red Alaska to elect someone antithetical to our values, to represent us in Congress. Peltola isn’t going to improve Alaska, she’s going to continue shutting it down and working hard with her Dem pals to push more leftist ideologies into our schools and daily lives.

    By my count, Lisa Murkowski has already overstayed her Alaskan Senate welcome by 6 years. She lost the prior fight fair and square, primaried by Joe Miller. But no! Murkowski then decided to run a sham re-election campaign against her challenger, where judges and election officials made HUGE allowances for the spelling of her name, or any dimple/mark near the write-in oval to put her there. Now, no need to earn her Party’s vote at all, she has the Chesbro Dems to hoist her above their shoulders!

    I feel sad for the state of our state up here. I am dreaming of warmer weather and an umbrella drink someplace in Florida. If only Desantis could figure out a way to make the gators, snakes and other foul creatures magically disappear.

  16. The “red wave” came in as a ripple compared to the more recent mid-term elections; whatever its potential ramifications may be for the 2024 GOP presidential primaries, it is certain that Governor DeSantis will be going in with a royal flush, and Trump–if he enters–will go blustering in with three-of-a-kind in sixes (666)! I’ll go with DeSantis: he is young and smart! Trump, like Biden, is well past prime!

    • The dems targeted the 18 to 29 vote, which was up 20%! This demographic is also the most indoctrinated and monolithic–and they knew that… This demographic is where we need to work on–or it will happen again.

  17. Murkowski will win over Tshibaka due to her abortion & birth control stance. Plus she’s not very likable. It’s part of the reason Peltola will win but that’s mostly because Begich voters refused to rank Palin 2nd.

    • Hey Tucker, Most of us early on recognized what a great candidate we had in young Nick. Following the entrance of the wrecking ball known as Sarah we RANKED CRAZY SARAH AS OUR SECOND, got that? So please stop with the blatant bovine excrement in defending your political pied piper of destruction. You guys got led over the cliff like a hoard of lemmings. Own it!

      Add Mary to another Democrat Leftist brought to power because of your little gone rogue blathering nymph.
      So far she is batting a great record in Alaska! Walker, Mark Begich and now Mary Peltola! You with the Sarah crush must be so proud! Thanks! Joe Biden and his handlers thank you as well.

      • Mr. Puk, it’s tough having taken an ugly beating and then treated worse than a down-and-out dopehead! But, as a lady that I once knew would fondly say, “big copulating deal” or something to that effect. The people want everlasting gobstoppers, bubble gum, and fruit flavored suckers: freebies like these are right up there with the forgiveness of sin and redemption! It doesn’t take much to realize that candy stores and churches do a fine business peddling sweets and the word of God!

        Pick yourself up out of the mud and have at ’em again. The next time be a little wiser and treat the people in the fashion that they’ve become accustomed to: “we the people” want to be bamboozled and treated like we’re really worth saving–you know, pretty much like yourself!

        Whatever, I’m sure that we haven’t heard or seen the last of you, Mr. Puk! Remember, “we the people” are fickle as hell!

      • Mr. Puk, it’s tough having taken an ugly beating and then treated worse than a down-and-out dopehead! But, as a lady that I once knew would often say, “big copulating deal” or something to that effect. The people want everlasting gobstoppers, bubble gum, and fruit flavored lollipops: freebies like these are right up there with the forgiveness of sins and the promise of redemption! It doesn’t take much to realize that candy stores and churches do a fine business peddling sweets and the word of God! But then again, there are the liquor stores and pot shops–a little something for everybody!

        Pick yourself up out of the mud and have at ’em again. Quit bawling! The next time be a little wiser and treat the people in the fashion that they’ve become accustomed to: “we the people” want to be bamboozled and treated like we’re really worth saving–you know, pretty much like yourself!

        Whatever, I’m sure that we haven’t heard or seen the last of you, Mr. Puk! Remember, “we the people” are fickle as hell!

    • Murkowski will win because the democrats will rank her 1st or 2nd, and not rank Kelly T. at all.
      As soon has we go to ranking, Tshibaka loses to Murkowski.

  18. The Red Wave did happen in AK. But as Suzanne pointed out, ranked-choice voting always benefits the minority. It used to be whoever got the most votes won. Were it just 2 candidates, the Republican would have won more than likely. Still, Conservative candidates pulled off some nice wins in other places. Don’t allow yourself to be demoralized by the media.

  19. You do know that Republicans are less in voter population than the independent/non-partizan voters in Alaska, correct? How were the Republicans (thus a minority party) benefitted by the RCV?

  20. Well, you may not like the results, but you do have to respect the votes. That’s how it works in the USA.

    The GOP needs to blame the far-right Big Lie folks for these losses. Most people aren’t buying it. Oh, and they also like their Social Security, their Medicare, and their right to a (safe but rare) abortion.

    • And by “The Big Lie”, you are of course referring to the crazy conspiracy theory that Usurper Husk Biden was fairly elected in 2020, assuredly. Anyone with eyes, ears and half a brain realizes that that is nonsense.

    • No–it’s supposed to be one legal person, one legal vote. For candidates from closed primaries. Not second choices being awarded to others by some algorithm, like participation trophies…

    • Oh you fell the ol they are going to take your social security and Medicare.. Not once did I hear how democrats policies were affecting my 401K. Unlike many I planned for my golden years and have a 401K unfortunately 2 mores years of this I won’t be able to buy a cup of coffee at Burger King. Thank you democrats and rinos. But hey at least you all can go get that abortion..

    • I do respect the votes.
      I do not respect the second/third choice votes. One person, one vote. Not one person, as many votes as they want, just as long as they do not vote for more than one person as first choice, or twice on the same ticket, any other BS.
      .
      If RCV did not exist, we would 1, know the outcome of the elections, and 2, know the outcome is correct. But, with RCV, we will not know who won for weeks, and then who the F knows whether the ranking is correct.

  21. So far, so good! At least in the governor’s race. Since RCV was also put in place to take down Mike Dunleavy, it would be poetic justice to see Big Mike win on the first ballot. I will settle for a win, period. For all those who did not vote because of RCV to protest it, Alaska probably lost the convention it needed to fine-tune the constitution and address some of the things that needed correction, like enabling the legislature to stop initiatives for the people approving any new taxes, or having the PFD encoded in the constitution. As far as the RCV goes, if Alaskans expect the legislature to repeal it, don’t hold your breath. A good many of them are part of the Alaskan deep state that brought it into being along with all that dark money that Suzanne already documented. It also looks like Giesel and some of the former Dunleavy foes are back in the legislature so that can’t be good. He will need a lot of support in the form of pressure for the voters to get things done. No man is an island. In the end, I am with Tucker – thank God enough people were smart enough to vote for Governor Dunleavy. Go Big Mike!

  22. When we educate our children to be liberals why are we surprised with the results? I’m not just talking about K-12. Democratic professors outnumber Republican professors 14 to one across 14 departments at University of Alaska, Anchorage, according to the College Fix, 11-2-22.

  23. We don’t really know who voters voted for, its all selected in the machines. RANK vote is another layer to hide fraud. Fraud was rampant across the nation and a significant number of races were flipped. Polling shows 70% of voters are not happy with the direction the country is going. Exit polling showed a significantly different vote than what the final outcome is showing.

  24. This election is one for the ages.
    Two races in Alaska US Senate and House, in both cases the voice of the Red voting public went unheard by the Republicans.
    From Washington DC Mitchy M poured money into Murkys campaign like there was no tomorrow. Doing this knowing two issues, Alaska was going to be a Red Senate seat and most importantly Alaska Republicans rejected Murkowski completely.
    Palin defeated Begich Every time she faced him. In a normal election it would have been over in the primary. The Alaska Republicans fought every way they knew how to put Palin down. With MRA leading the charge, followed up by Non Alaskan Danny “please pass the biscuits” Fagen. With Virtually no negative press going after the Democrat who is formally from the Least popular place to visit in Alaska Bethel. It was easy for the public to then reject both Republican candidates.
    Multiply this Republican logic across the country and you understand why people in PA voted for Fetterneck.
    The Alaskan Republican Party has to reset it’s leadership. It is apparent that they were asleep at wheel on this election, maybe to concerned about their own political aspirations.

  25. I’m confused, Suzanne. Everything I’ve researched thus far says the only votes counted were November 8 votes—meaning early voting, absentee and many villages are not yet counted. Do you have insider information about bottom line election totals that inspired your conclusions about who won and lost?

    • CAC, thanks for your question. To drill into the data, there are about 17,000 early votes left to count, and about that many already counted, and two villages left to count. There are never any sizable numbers of absentee ballots that come from the villages. If there are 2,000 absentee ballots that come from the four rural regions, that would be a lot for them, as it is just not their way to go to the post office to mail in their ballot when they can go into town and vote. So yes, not a single absentee ballot has been counted from rural Alaska, and there won’t be very many when all is said and done. I think the two villages left to count are Gambell and another village in the Bethel region, name escapes me at the moment. – sd

      • Hoping not to add to confusion, here, but the way I read CAC’s question, he/she is asking more broadly about all the absentee ballots yet to arrive at the regional headquarters to be counted, not just those that may have been mailed from the remote villages. Any estimate, Suzanne, on how many overall absentees we can expect to trickle in between now and the deadline? Or, are you including absentees in the 17,000 “early votes left to count” number?

      • So, what is the percentage of people who were registered to vote to the actual vote. I know your readers are mostly voters but what were the numbers? So many of us are hard-core “ I only vote in person the day of “, but this is not a good philosophy. Vote at the earliest opportunity and embrace the system in place, regardless of what we think of it. Better that, then seeing the lines on Election Day and deciding that you just don’t have the time or patience for the process. When 70% of registered voters can’t take part, it is lame. When the ones who do turn out don’t research who or what they are voting for, it is doubly lame. Kelly Merrick won in district “L” simply because she had the most signs, and adds (thanks to the unions) and claiming to be Republican ( although she had been censored twice by the Republican Party of Alaska) I could say we got what we deserved, but nobody deserves this. I will try to deal with the leg- wrestling champion of Covid as my new “representative “. So sorry, Chugiak/ Eagle River, my business will remain closed.

  26. Not just the small potato four that’s being waged in Alaska, but look what happened in Long Island New York taking down three seated Democrat congressman. It didn’t just happen in Florida or Texas and probably Georgia next month and Long Island New York. There’s lots of stories around the country. It might be popular to paint that picture as anticlimactic, and certainly there’s room for improvement but there was a Red Wave last night. The only thing in question is how big away was it and my answer to that would be, big enough.

  27. Let’s be honest Begich didn’t run very good ads going after Peltola. Palin Campaign was broke, couldn’t even get ads out there. Meanwhile Peltola is running ads that looked like they were directed by a Hollywood studio. Begich/Palin I don’t care which one, should’ve found Alaskans moms and had them talk about high food costs, high fuel prices, high electric bills etc. nope none of that. How sending them to DC would help reverse crazy joes policies and lower these costs. Republicans I tell you hire the absolute worse campaign managers. Oh well let’s see what happens in 2 yrs. By December 1st fuel prices will be North of $5.50 if not higher here in Alaska. Crazy joe said no more oil out of the strategic reserve. Alaska you got what you deserve..

    • Well, Alaska have been sending Republicans to DC for years, decades… and what did the Alaska Republicans brought to Alaska,? Exactly what you said: high food costs, high fuel prices, high electric bills… It’s time that Democrat can finally help Alaska

  28. I could see it now mom and her kids pushing the car into the gas station they ran out of gas. Swipes debit card to buy gas it’s declined. Asks a Peltola supporter if they could help her out. They say nope, buy an electric vehicle as they gas up. Guy comes out it’s Nick Begich and he fills up the ladies car. Man that would’ve been a great ad more like epic ad. Any future candidates out their looking for a campaign manager I work for pop tarts and diet mtn dew.

    • Why would Nick fill up her gas tank for her? She should get a job and buy her own gas and not take gas money from the rest of us who do work and pay our taxes. She sounds like a freeloader. Begich is no commie giving handouts to people who can’t help themselves, I wouldn’t have voted for him if he made ads like you describe. Smells too much like liberal money wasting.

  29. I don’t believe a word of it.
    I believe the red wave was a tidal wave.
    And I believe Dominion Voting Systems are waterproof.
    Paper ballots, precinct counting with observers and out with the computerized theft.

  30. Sorry Suzanne, not buying the Dunleavy is a conservative line. Why did he lock down this State during the Covid debacle and watch while people lost their jobs because they didn’t want the death jab? Why did he give Dr. Zink an award for not following the science on masks and the experimental vaccine that had no safety data proving it was safe and effective. Why is he allowing hackable voting machines to be used in his State? Why has he not cleaned Alaska’s voter rolls? Why is he not challenging RCV in court? Dunleavy is a swamp creature and acts conservative with no substance to back it up. He throws the people a bone like the PFD increases but allows the rest of the State to rot! There was a Red Tsunami as described but the Democrat and RINO election steal machine is in full swing. They are continuing to count and magically finding thousands of new votes to get their candidates across the line, just like in 2020. They are literally stealing elections with no repercussions due to cowards in the State Legislatures and Courts. The American people will need to rebuild this system from the ground up and take control of the necessary processes or the damage will continue. These people are evil and will stop at nothing to destroy our Constitutional Republic. There are still people asleep, called the normies. They do not fully grasp the scope of what we face. This is a fundamental takeover of our country without the consent of the governed. America has never faced anything on this scale. The corruption is deep and wide! May God help us in this fight, because we need him to help us defeat this enemy.

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