Former Republican Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin advanced to the August special election for the state’s single House seat, The Associated Press reported Thursday.
Palin competed against 47 other candidates in the special primary, advancing to the special election alongside Republican Nick Begich and independent Al Gross, the AP reported. Only the top four candidates will secure a spot in the special election to replace recently deceased Republican Rep. Don Young.
The state, which conducted the primary largely by mail-in ballots, has counted 132,730 votes since the special primary was held Saturday, the AP reported. Palin led with 28.3%, followed by Begich with 19.3%, Gross with 12.8%, Democrat Mary Peltola with 8.7% and Republican Tara Sweeney with 5.5%.
The election did away with party primaries after voters approved eliminating them in 2020, the AP reported.
The winner of the August special election will serve in the position until January, with the winner of the November general election holding the seat for a full term, the AP reported. The general election will implement ranked-choice voting, which was similarly passed by the voters.
Both Begich and Gross have sought to remind voters that Palin resigned as governor of the state after campaigning as the vice-presidential nominee on the 2008 Republican presidential ticket, the AP reported.
“She had a chance to stay in the fight for Alaska, but she chose to chase cheap fame,” Begich’s campaign said in a fundraising email, the AP reported.
Palin has “really not made herself available to the people of Alaska to get to know her again,” Begich told The Daily Caller News Foundation. “We’re excited about the race in front of us and looking forward to a very competitive, spirited debate about the issues over the next two months.”
Palin said since announcing her campaign that her resignation was the consequence of frivolous records requests and ethics complaints that impeded her tenure as governor, the AP reported.
“I’m so Alaskan I hit a moose the other night,” Palin said in response to the criticism, the AP reported.
Representatives for Palin and Gross did not immediately respond to TheDCNF’s request for comment.