(NewsGlobal.com)- The final results in Alaska’s election for their at-large seat on the House of Representatives, but it appears as if incumbent Democratic Representative Mary Peltola will win re-election.
The only reason that Democrats will hold onto the seat, though, is because of Alaska’s new voting system called “ranked-choice” that went into effect for the first time this election cycle.
Instead of a traditional election where voters will choose just one candidate who they want to win, voters are able to assign a numerical value to more than one candidate. They can vote for who they think should be first, second and third, for example.
This system was put into place after voters in the state of Alaska approved it via referendum back in 2020. This was the first election in which it was used, though.
Turns out, the ranked-choice voting system has benefitted the Democrats quite considerably. To wit, Peltola garnered 48.7% of the total vote. The next two in line were both Republicans — former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin, with 25.8% of the vote, and Nick Begich, with 23.4% of the vote.
The two Republicans accounted for 59.2% of the total vote compared to Peltola’s 48.7%. If Alaska had a traditional voting system — which a primary for each party and then a straight winner voting poll — it’s very possible Republicans could’ve landed the seat.
Palin went off on the voting system in October, saying that it was a system that was designed to specifically assist the Democrats and other weaker Republican candidates such as Senator Lisa Murkowski, who also looks to have won re-election for her seat over her Republican challenger Kelly Tshibaka, who was endorsed by former President Donald Trump.
As Palin explained of the voting system:
“This is what’s going to elect Democrats and destroy our country before we even know it. I am just sounding that alarm that it’s this bad.
“I don’t want this to happen to any other electorate, in any city, in any state. Alaska is kind of this test case right now where we have elements of a perfect bad storm. We have lax voter-ID laws. We have a long election cycle where mail-in ballots can be mailed in for — gosh — it seems like months if not many weeks.”
The last point that Palin is referring to is the fact that Alaska’s elections won’t be called for quite some time after Election Day because of the state’s rules when it comes to absentee ballots. In fact, the official results of this year’s elections in Alaska won’t become official until this Wednesday, at the earliest.
Peltola won a special election back in August to serve out the remainder of the seat’s term, which only lasts through early next year. That meant she had to once again run for election a few months after the fact to try to win the seat back.