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Mary Peltra, First Alaskan Native in Congress, Wins Bid to Retain Seat | Alaska

First Democrat Mary Peltra Alaska Born to serve in Congress, she won her bid to retain the state’s only seat in the House of Representatives.

Pertra made history She won a special election this summer, replacing Republican Don Young after his death. She is also the first woman to do so.

After serving the remainder of Young’s term, Peltra faced a rematch with her previous challenger. Republican Sarah Palin, Nick Vegich III, libertarian Chris Bye, Congress’s term expires.

On Wednesday, she won again in Alaska’s newly introduced ranked choice voting system.

“Now I am a true legislator for all of Alaska,” she said. Young often referred to himself as such. Peltola describes his legacy as one of bipartisanship and building support for Alaska’s interests in Congress.

Pertola campaigned as a moderate who was willing to work with candidates from both parties, embracing a platform of “pro-fish, pro-family, pro-freedom”. After her inauguration, she hired Young’s former chief of staff and lifelong Republican to run her office.

“I would love to work with anyone who is reasonable to find solutions to Alaska’s challenges,” she told The Guardian in August.

Peltra, who was sworn into Congress just two months ago, has upheld the platform “Stand for fish, stand for family, stand for liberty” and stand up for the climate emergency and Alaska’s fisheries. We are committed to addressing other threats and protecting access to abortion. While she maintains support for environmental and Indigenous groups throughout her home state, her support for one of the largest onshore oil and gas developments in the United States, proposed in Alaska’s North Slope, has allowed her caused controversy among its supporters.

She tries to balance the need to address the climate crisis, which includes Alaska’s vulnerable Arctic regions, with the economic realities of Alaska’s entanglement in the oil and gas industry.

Her second victory speaks not only to her broad cross-party appeal, but also to Alaskan skepticism of Palin. Known for her relentless friendliness, Peltra ran a largely positive campaign, drawing admiration from Republicans in Alaska, including Palin.

The two overlapped in the Alaska State Capitol, where Peltra was in Congress and Palin was governor. Palin spoke about Peltra at the Alaska Native League convention in late October.

Two Republicans, Palin and Vezic III, often clashed throughout the campaign season even as they encouraged each other’s supporters to rank them as second-choice to guarantee Republicans in Congress. did.

Alaska’s unique rank-choice voting system asked voters to select among the candidates in order of preference. If one candidate gets more than 50% of her first-choice votes, that candidate wins. If not, the candidate with the lowest number of votes is eliminated and votes are reassigned to the remaining candidates until someone wins.

Peltola won the election with 54.94% of the vote in the third ballot after two other candidates, Begich III and Bye, were eliminated and supporters’ votes were redistributed among the remaining candidates. . Alaska constituencyPeltola was close to winning from the start with nearly 49% of the vote in the first round. Only about 10% of the defeated Republican candidate’s supporters chose Pertola instead of Palin as their next option, but that was enough to secure her victory.

https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2022/nov/23/mary-peltola-wins-alaska-democrat Mary Peltra, First Alaskan Native in Congress, Wins Bid to Retain Seat | Alaska

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