Sarah Palin, the former governor of Alaska and vice-presidential candidate, announced on Friday that she would run for the House seat of late Republican Rep. Don Young, who died last month after almost 50 years as a congressman.
“Today I’m announcing my candidacy for the U.S. House seat representing Alaska. Public service is a calling, and I would be honored to represent the men and women of Alaska in Congress, just as Rep. Young did for 49 years,” Palin wrote in a statement on Facebook and Twitter. “I realize that I have very big shoes to fill, and I plan to honor Rep. Young’s legacy by offering myself up in the name of service to the state he loved and fought for, because I share that passion for Alaska and the United States of America.”
— Sarah Palin (@SarahPalinUSA) April 2, 2022
“America is at a tipping point,” she stated. “As I’ve watched the far left destroy the country, I knew I had to step up and join the fight.”
The Anchorage Daily News reported that 51 candidates have signed up to compete for Young’s seat, more than twice the highest number in any past election, but Palin is the only one whose name made the headline of the article. This suggests she may have an edge over other candidates in the primary.
The primary will be held on June 11th and will be entirely by mail for the first time. Results are set to be announced on June 26, and the general special election will be held on August 16 using ranked-choice voting.
The special election will be held on the same day as the primary of the regular election for the seat that Young held, which means that some candidates could be running both for the special election and the primary.
Under ranked-choice voting, voters rank their choices on the ballot rather than choosing one candidate. If no candidate wins a majority of the votes, the candidate with the least votes is eliminated and the tally is re-ranked without those votes, considering the second-preference rankings on those ballots.
If no candidate still has a majority, the second-lowest ranked candidate is eliminated, and so on, until someone gains the majority of votes.
Palin was the mayor of Wasilla from 1996 to 2002, served as the Alaska Oil and Gas Conservation Commission chair in 2003, and was elected governor of the state in 2006.
She was selected as John McCain’s vice presidential running mate in 2008 and helped inject spirit and enthusiasm into that race. Ultimately, it was not enough to overcome Barack Obama, however.
She is probably the most politically experienced candidate on the ballot, but whether that is a good thing or not, who knows anymore?