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Peltola, Murkowski and Dunleavy maintain leads in updated results for special and primary elections

220816 special and primary election Dillingham city hall.
Izzy Ross
/
KDLG
Dillingham City Hall council chambers during the special and primary elections on Aug. 16, 2022.

The state Division of Elections on Thursday published updated results for the Aug. 16 primary and special elections. The final results of this election will be released until Aug. 31.

Statewide results: Special election

The special election will decide who fills the late Congressman Don Young’s seat in the U.S. House of Representatives from September through January.

Democrat Mary Peltola has 39% of the first place votes cast across the state. Republican Sarah Palin has received 31%, and Republican Nick Begich has 28%.

The special election is ranked choice, so these results only show voters’ first choices from the first round of counting. If a candidate gets more than 50% of the vote, that candidate wins. If not, counting starts for Round 2. That’s when the candidate with the fewest votes is eliminated from the race. If someone’s first-choice candidate is eliminated, their second-choice candidate will get their vote, and so forth. That means the candidates leading so far may lose their race once all the votes are counted.

For example, if someone’s first choice for House representative is Nick Begich and their second choice is Sarah Palin, but Begich is eliminated because he received the fewest first-choice votes, that person’s vote would count toward Palin after the second-round tally. If Palin receives more votes than Peltola after the second round, Palin would win the election.

Read the Division of Elections' guide to ranked choice voting

Statewide results: Primary 

The primary elections were nonpartisan, and voters were able to pick one candidate in each race.

In the House primary election, Peltola has 36% of the vote, while Palin has 30% and Begich has 26%.

Results from the Senate race show incumbent Republican Sen. Lisa Murkowski with 45% of the votes. Challenger Kelly Tshibaka, another republican, has received 39%.

In the race for governor, 40% of the votes are for incumbent Republican Gov. Mike Dunleavy, while Independent former Gov. Bill Walker and Democrat Les Gara are both at just under 23%.

House District 37 results: Special election

Those additional ballots have shifted the unofficial counts in House District 37, which represents Bristol Bay, the Alaska Peninsula, and parts of the Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta. But the updated numbers haven’t made any changes to the line up so far.

Peltola’s support is higher in District 37 than it is statewide. In the special election, Peltola increased her lead by 1 point, to 43% of the votes counted for the district so far. Begich and Palin each hold around 28% of the votes.

House District 37 results: Primary

Peltola has maintained her House primary lead in the district, with around 42% of the votes. Palin still has about 25%, and Begich’s counts went up by a couple points, to 24%.

In the race for Senate, Murkowski is still the top candidate with about 59% of the district’s votes. Tshibaka has gained 3 points and now has 23%.

The gubernatorial primary results shifted slightly as well. Dunleavy’s share of the votes has dropped slightly, to 36%. Former Walker now has 30%, and Gara has 20%.

State Senate District S and House District 37

The state Senate race for District S is unchanged: Democratic incumbent Lyman Hoffman has the same counts of 64% and challenger Willy Keppel of the Veterans Party of Alaska has 35%.

Finally, the race for District 37 state House Representative has only one candidate: Incumbent Independent Bryce Edgmon is running unopposed.

Get in touch with the author at izzy@kdlg.org or 907-842-2200.

Izzy Ross is the news director at KDLG, the NPR member station in Dillingham. She reports, edits, and hosts stories from around the Bristol Bay region, and collaborates with other radio stations across the state.