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Alaska Zoo holding its own presidential election

Izzy the Brown Bear is the favored candidate for president of the Alaska Zoo in the 2020...
Izzy the Brown Bear is the favored candidate for president of the Alaska Zoo in the 2020 election. He is gaining a respectable lead to petting zoo hen challenger, Squishy.(Taylor Clark)
Published: Oct. 26, 2020 at 7:10 PM AKDT|Updated: Oct. 27, 2020 at 7:17 AM AKDT
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ANCHORAGE, Alaska (KTUU) - It’s a race that folks probably haven’t been dialed into as much as some of the other elections happening this year: President of the Animals at the Alaska Zoo. So far, two candidates are running intense campaigns to be announced the winner.

The favored candidate so far is Izzy, a massive brown bear running in his first election. He’s trailed by petting zoo hen, Squishy.

Izzy’s campaign manager is his handler, Sam Lavin who said the bear is running on some key issues that most zoo animals can get behind.

“Izzy is a very food-driven bear and thinks that everyone should be as food-driven as he is,” Lavin said. "So everyone gets lots and lots of food.”

Squishy and her campaign could not be reached for comment at the time of publication. When asked how candidate Izzy feels about his opponent, Lavin said, “Well, he loves chicken.”

Running on a platform based around food and security is the key to Izzy’s race and the whole point of the election. Instead of counting votes, campaign donations are the way to victory in this race.

“We get a lot of donations, we have a very supportive community," Lavin said, "But there is a lot of stuff that we have to buy as far as food for the animals, and we go through a lot of straw in the wintertime, and we have payroll needs, and we have electrical needs, and, you know, just the overhead costs as well. So I mean, it does all go to our general fund keeps us going through the winter.”

On top of going toward the funds to cover costs, the election donations also go toward the zoo’s relief fund.

Like the other elections, the ballots for the Alaska Zoo presidential race ends on Nov. 3. For those interested in participating, visit here.

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