Rather than go through a recount process, Sean Parnell has conceded the primary election to Rep. Don Young (links in the original):
“If I thought there was anything wrong, inappropriate or unprofessional about the way this election tally was conducted, I would not only call for a recount, I would demand one,” Parnell said. “But that is not the case here.”
Events in the presidential contest may have diminished his incentive to keep fighting for the House seat. With Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin now the GOP‘s vice presidential nominee, Parnell is in position to become governor if the Republican ticket prevails. In a statement, Parnell noted that his current “responsibilities are heightened even more with the exciting possibility” that Palin could become vice president.
I’ll have to admit that since the selection of Sarah Palin as John McCain’s running mate, I have thought that it was less likely that Sean Parnell would ask for a recount. If Palin ascends to the Vice Presidency, Alaska will need to keep at least one reform-minded leader behind. And, while this makes it more likely that Democrat Ethan Berkowitz will win in November, he is pro-drilling in ANWR and has to be more ethical than Don Young.
That’s the latest word from the recount of the Alaska GOP House primary. From the Washington Post (links in the original):
With the regular, absentee and provisional ballots counted, Rep. Don Young now leads Lt. Gov. Sean Parnell in the Alaska House GOP primary by 239 votes. But the race isn’t over quite yet, and Young faces a tough general election even if he does eventually beat Parnell.
The Anchorage Daily News says that overseas absentee ballots are still being accepted until Wednesday. After that, a state board will review the results, as is standard practice in every Alaska race. The results will likely be certified around Sept. 18. Unlike some states, Alaska does not provide for an automatic recount except in an exact tie. But the loser of a contest or 10 qualified voters can ask for one to be conducted, and if the race’s margin is less than .5 percent, as this one appears certain to be, the state will bear the cost of the recount. Parnell has not said yet whether he would request a recount.
As the article notes, even if Sean Parnell loses the primary, he still has a bright future in Alaska politics, especially if the McCain-Palin ticket wins in November.
I’ll make sure to keep you up to date.
Here’s where it stands:
Alaska State Division of Elections says there are close to 15,000 absentee ballots from the primary election that have arrived as of Tuesday of this week. There are another 12,000 or so questioned ballots.
Hopefully we’ll know the final tally soon!
I woke up this morning to the disheartening news from Alaska:
Republican Rep. Don Young — whose three and a half decade hold on Alaska’s sole House seat was imperiled by political ethics controversies — holds a razor-thin lead over Lt. Gov. Sean Parnell who ran a strong primary challenge against the embattled congressman.
With 98 percent of the state’s precincts reporting in the House contest, Young led Parnell by a margin of just 145 votes. At one point late in the count, Parnell had held a small lead over Young. That tiny gap, if it holds up in the final results, could permit the trailing candidate to call for a recount. Republican state Rep. Gabrielle LeDoux received the remaining 9 percent of the vote.
I haven’t yet heard if there will be a recount on the vote, but I will have that information as it becomes available.
As far as Gabrielle LeDoux goes, I hope she appreciates what she’s done by staying in a race she couldn’t possibly win.
UPDATE: According to the results, around 150 votes (or 0.16%) now separate Young and Sean Parnell. I just received an email from the Sean Parnell campaign saying that they are waiting on the absentee ballots to be counted, and that there will be a recount since the difference between the two candidates is below 0.5%.
As I write this, with 57.8% of precincts Lt. Gov. Sean Parnell leads Rep. Don Young in the GOP House primary by one percentage point! Hopefully I will wake up tomorrow morning to good news.
You can keep track of the election results here.
If you are an Alaska Republican today is primary day, so make sure to go to the polls and vote for Sean Parnell. I am confident that Lt. Gov. Sean Parnell will relieve kleptocrat Don Young of his post as Alaska’s lone Congressman.
Make sure you help Sean Parnell start his general election race off right by donating to his campaign.
The Salt Lake City Tribune can’t seem to understand why a Congressman like Chris Cannon got ousted by Jason Chaffetz in the GOP primary (emphasis mine):
A Congressional Quarterly study of partisan votes during the Bush years shows that Rep. Chris Cannon has voted with Republicans 97 percent of the time and supported the president 89 percent of the time, making him the most conservative member of Utah’s delegation.
But maybe not conservative enough. Cannon recently lost the GOP primary in the 3rd District to Jason Chaffetz, who ran as a conservative alternative.
“For some reason his constituents could never focus on how loyal to the party he was, and it created this strange phenomenon with him always having to struggle,” said Kirk Jowers, director of the University of Utah’s Hinckley Institute of Politics. “Really because of one issue – immigration – people were able to define him as not being as conservative as the overall data would suggest.”
The problem wasn’t that constituents didn’t know how loyal he was to the Republican Party, it’s that they did know.
The newspaper is equating agreement with President Bush and the Republican Party with conservatism, which any conservative could tell you is not accurate. Voting for No Child Left Behind meant agreeing with the GOP and President Bush, but this legislation was far from conservative. The same could be said of Medicare Part D, last summer’s amnesty legislation, and the recent housing bailout.
You can donate to Jason Chaffetz’ campaign here.