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Top 4 in special House primary maintain positioning after latest ballot count

AP calls race for Palin, Begich, Gross and Peltola
The race for Alaska’s U.S. Representative seat stayed mostly in order after the latest dump of ballot counting Friday afternoon in the special primary election.
Published: Jun. 17, 2022 at 2:18 PM AKDT|Updated: Jun. 17, 2022 at 2:54 PM AKDT
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ANCHORAGE, Alaska (KTUU) - The race for Alaska’s U.S. Representative seat stayed mostly in order after the latest dump of ballot counting Friday afternoon in the special primary election.

Republican Sarah Palin maintained her lead over the rest of the field, even as the total percentage of votes she’s corralled shrank slightly, going from 28.19% of all ballots cast on Wednesday to 27.59% Friday. The former Alaska governor leads by over 12,000 votes over her nearest election competitor, Republican candidate Nick Begich, who now holds 19.27% of all ballots.

The latest count by the Division of Elections shows 150,036 ballots counted, up from Wednesday’s count of 134,179, in the race to decide who will finish out the term of the late Rep. Don Young. The 150,036 ballots currently counted represents a 25.55% voter turnout.

Behind Palin and Begich are nonpartisan candidate Al Gross with 12.65% of the vote and Democrat Mary Peltola with 9.44%. The top four vote-getters advance to the Aug. 16 special general election.

Peltola’s lead over Republican Tara Sweeney grew slightly, going from over 4,000 votes to now more than 5,000 — Peltola currently has 14,133 votes to Sweeney’s 8,671.

The Associated Press on Wednesday declared Palin, Begich and Gross would advance. On Friday, AP called the final spot for Peltola.

Sweeney conceded in the primary election Wednesday night and was joined Thursday by Democrats Christopher Constant and Emil Notti. Constant currently sits eighth with 3.72% of the vote, while Notti sits 13th with 1.14%.

Santa Claus, a nonpartisan candidate, sits sixth with 4.60% of the vote, while Jeff Lowenfels sits seventh with 3.73% of the vote.

The division will issue its final vote counts on Tuesday before the State Review Board begins next Thursday. The target date for the Division of Elections to certify the results is June 25.

Editor’s note: This article has been updated with additional information.

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