Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) is cutting into her Republican opponent Kelly Tshibaka’s lead in the Alaska senate race, and Republican Sarah Palin trails Democrat Rep. Mary Peltola in the race for Alaska’s lone congressional seat, according to Alaska’s latest vote count update.
Tshibaka, who earned an endorsement from former President Donald Trump, has a narrow lead over pro-impeachment Sen. Murkowski. After roughly 27,000 more votes were counted on Tuesday, Tshibaka’s lead was cut from 3,000 to 565.
Tshibaka and Murkowski both have approximately 43 percent of the vote. Under Alaska’s new ranked-choice voting system, voters’ second and third choices will be tabulated if neither candidate earns more than 50 percent of the vote.
As Breitbart News explained:
All candidates from all parties appear on the ballot together in the August primary. The top four vote-getters regardless of party then advance to the general election, and their voters are given the opportunity to pick their top choice, as well as their second and third choices. If no candidate in the first round of voters’ first choices gets 50 percent of the vote, the last place candidate’s second choices are distributed across the remaining three candidates to see if someone can get across the majority threshold. If that fails again to produce a majority vote-getter, then a third round is conducted where the third place candidate’s votes are redistributed according to second choices between the remaining two candidates.
Alaska voters instituted the new voting system by ballot measure in 2020. However, a recent video exposed a Murkowski aide who claimed the ballot measure to institute ranked choice voting was promoted by people who “wanted Lisa to get reelected.”
Even if she does not win the first round of voting, Murkowski could see a significant bump in the second round from voters who selected Democrat candidate Pat Chesbro as their first choice.
As Breitbart News detailed:
Before the election, Murkowski allied herself with Democrat Chesbro, who in turn said she was voting for Murkowski in an effort to gain support down ballot against Tshibaka. Throughout the race, Murkowski was aided with $9 million from the Mitch McConnell-backed super PAC. The fund backed Murkowski even as it pulled funds in from New Hampshire Senate Republican challenger Gen. Don Bolduc and Arizona Senate Republican candidate Blake Masters.
In Alaska’s congressional race, Peltola, who took office after a September special election, has just over 48 percent of the vote after election officials counted the latest ballots.
Although the total Republican vote was more than a majority, Palin split that vote with GOP candidate Nick Begich under the new ranked-choice voting system. Palin has 26 percent of the vote, while Begich has just under 24 percent.
Alaska’s Division of Elections will tabulate voters’ second and third-ranked choices on November 23, with officials striving to certify the election’s results on November 29.