Republican Sarah Palin dies in special election for Alaska’s only seat in the US Congress. Democrat Mary Peltola will complete the remaining four months of the tenure of Don Young, who passed away in March. A resit will follow in the fall.
For months, former Alaska state governor Sarah Palin worked on her political comeback. With the support of ex-President Donald Trump, she was aiming for a seat in the House of Representatives after the death of Republican MP Don Young. He passed away in March earlier this year, after representing Alaska for nearly half a century. In the end, she lost out to Mary Peltola, a former Democratic state legislator and Yup’ik Eskimo native of Alaska. She becomes the first Native Alaskan to serve as a legislator in the state’s Congress.
“We have achieved a lot in a short time,” Peltola said after her victory. “I want to continue to earn the trust of the Alaskans.” Palin remains combative after her loss. She’s disappointed and will bounce back, but she also made it clear that she was ready for a comeback in the fall, when Republicans and Democrats will once again compete in the general election for a full two-year term. That Palin lost this battle, she said, was due to the state’s new electoral system – ranked-choice voting – the blame for her defeat. According to her, the system is ‘too complicated and confusing’.
Peltola’s win is the latest in a string of Democratic victories. These unexpected successes are giving Democrats more confidence to maintain their lead in the Senate in November, especially as Republican candidates appear to be internally divided. Still, Democrats recognize that it will be a lot harder to maintain control of the House of Representatives.