Former Republican Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin told Newsmax she would take over recently passed Rep. Don Young’s House seat “in a heartbeat” if she were asked to.
“Think of those huge shoes that are to be filled when we consider Don Young’s longevity and his passion, his love, his fighting spirit for our wonderful state of Alaska and for the nation as a whole,” she told Newsmax. “We’ll see how this process is going to go in terms of filling that seat but it would be an honor”
Palin said it “would be an honor” to take over Young’s seat. “If I were asked to serve in the House and take his place, I would be humbled and honored and I would. Yeah, in a heartbeat I would.”
Young’s office confirmed on Friday that the congressman died at the age of 88 while traveling home to Alaska. He was first elected in 1973, and he was running for his 26th term in the House when he passed. The opening of Young’s former seat, which is the only one Alaska is allotted in the House, created an opening that many in the state had been waiting for, The Washington Examiner reported.
“There are a lot of people who worked for him who thought they should inherit his seat in some fashion,” a Republican operative told the outlet. “Now that he’s passed away, a lot of these people would be free to throw their hats in the ring.”
Alaska’s new all-party voting primary could also create an opening for a Democrat if numerous GOP candidates split the vote while liberals rally behind a single contender, the Examiner reported.
“I would expect that the national Democrat machine will probably go into full action in the state of Alaska,” said Nick Begich, the only Republican to have announced a challenge to Young prior to his death, the Examiner reported. “There will be opportunists who will see this as some way to advance their own personal trajectory.”
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