On Election Day in Dillingham, one vote separated Biden from Trump

Nov 6, 2020

The unofficial results from in-person voting on Election Day in for Dillingham put Joe Biden ahead of Donald Trump by one vote. Absentee and mail-in ballots will be counted next week. Dillingham voters also slightly favored independent challengers for the U.S. Senate and House seats over the Republican incumbents. 

Voting Booths in Dillingham
Credit Brian Venua/KDLG

A single vote separates former Vice President Joe Biden and President Donald Trump in Dillingham’s unofficial results from Election Day — a reminder of how each vote counts. Biden is in the lead; he has 249 votes, while Trump has 248. So far, just 20 votes are for the third party candidates — Libertarian Jo Jorgensen had nine votes, Green Party Howie Hawkins has three votes, Constitution Party Don Blankenship has seven votes, and unaffiliated independent Brock Pierce has one vote.

These are just the preliminary results from in-person voting on Election Day. We’re still waiting for the mail-in and absentee in-person ballots, which will be counted next week.

525 Dillinghamers cast their ballots in person on Election Day. Sixteen people voted through a special needs ballot because they could not leave their houses due to quarantine or for other reasons. 

In the Senate and House races so far, Dillingham voters slightly favor the independent challengers endorsed by the Democratic Party. 

Senate candidate Al Gross is leading incumbent Republican Dan Sullivan by almost 40 votes. Gross has 269 votes, while Sullivan has 230. Alaskan Independence Party candidate John Howe has 22 votes. 

In the race for Alaska’s only seat in the U.S. House of Representatives, independent Alyse Galvin is narrowly outpacing Republican Representative Don Young. Galvin has 265 votes, while Young is at 250. 

Dillingham independent House Speaker Bryce Edgemon ran unopposed for reelection to his seat representing District 37. Edgmon got 417 votes, and there were also 13 write-ins.

Voting at the Dillingham City Hall on Election Day went smoothly, according to Pat Walsh, an election judge in Dillingham. 

“It was a good day — people were filtering through throughout the day and we did our best to make it as safe of an environment to vote in terms of masks, the social distancing, sanitizing thing so we tried to do our best with that,” she said.

While most of the day went well, there was a hiccup with the scanning machine early in the morning.

“The only glitch was early in the morning when we opened at [7:00 a.m.],” said Walsh. “There were a lot of voters that came to vote, and our scanning machine — that scans our ballots and at the end of the night tallies -- had problems with it accepting the ballots and it took us about an hour to get that resolved.”

They ran a cleaning material through the machine, and Walsh said that all ballots were counted once it was repaired.

Voter intimidation was a hot topic in the lead-up to the election, but Walsh said there were no reports of inappropriate behavior around the polling place here in Dillingham.

“Not that I saw, not that I heard. No one reported anything, no one told us anything.” she said. “I think people were respectful — all the voters were respectful and that’s kudos to the community of Dillingham.”

Counting for in-person absentee votes and mail-in ballots starts on November 10.

Contact the author at brian@kdlg.org or 907-842-2200.