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Murkowski Wins More Votes Than All Statewide Write-in Candidates in Alaska History Combined

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Only 94,926 Alaskans had cast their ballot for statewide write-in candidates over the previous 52 years; Murkowski eclipses 100,000

Republican write-in U.S. Senate candidate Lisa Murkowski not only made history in Alaska today - with the Associated Press declaring her the winner in her contest over GOPer Joe Miller - but she did so in stunning fashion.

Smart Politics finds Murkowski won more write-in votes in 2010 than all those cast in the history of statewide elections in Alaska (Governor, US Senate, US House) - elections which included write-in campaigns by a sitting Senator (Ernest Gruening, 1968), a former Governor (Wally Hickel, 1978 and 1986), and a GOP-endorsed write-in candidate for Governor (Robin Taylor, 1998).

And it nearly took every one of these write-in votes for Murkowski to come out on top.

The eight previous write-in campaigns for statewide office in Alaska over the past 50+ years tallied 94,926 votes.

After Tuesday, Murkowski had won 100,868 votes, including 8,153 ballots that were counted, but contested by Miller (who sat at 90,448 votes).

Given this historical context, Murkowski's vote tally is an incredible feat - even after discounting her well-known surname and the large amount of money she had to spend to educate a relatively small electorate on the write-in process.

When Wally Hickel ran for governor as a write-in candidate in 1978 - setting the previous Alaskan mark of 26.4 percent - there were slightly more than 126,000 ballots in play.

When Robin Taylor ran for governor as a write-in in 1998 (winning a previous best 40,209 votes), there were slightly more than 220,000 ballots cast in that year's gubernatorial race.

More than 254,000 ballots were counted in the Last Frontier State's 2010 U.S. Senate race, with Murkowski winning more than 39 percent of the vote.

Write-In Candidacies in Alaskan Statewide General Elections, 1958-2010

Year
Candidate
Office
Votes
Percent
Place
1958
Keith Capper
US Senate
599
1.2
3 of 3
1968
Ernest Gruening
US Senate
14,118
17.4
3 of 3
1978
Wally Hickel
Governor
33,555
26.4
2 of 5
1986
Wally Hickel
Governor
4,958
2.8
4 of 6
1986
Ed Hoch
Governor
107
0.1
6 of 6
1998
Robin Taylor
Governor
40,209
18.3
2 of 8
1998
Wayne Ross
Governor
801
0.4
7 of 8
1998
Nick Begich, Jr.
Governor
579
0.3
8 of 8
2010
Lisa Murkowski
US Senate
100,868*
39.6*
1 of 6
* Unofficial results. Sources: Office of the Clerk, U.S. House of Representatives; State of Alaska Division of Elections. Table compiled by Smart Politics.

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1 Comment


  • and Senator Lisa Murkowski pulled it off despite Michelle Bachmann throwing her support behind Joe Miller.

    Michelle should leave Alaskan politics to more ethical people!

    Joe Miller was disciplined for ethics violations, he carried consumer credit card debt that equaled his yearly salary, he lied, lied about lying and then admitted he was a liar, he quit every job he held in Alaska, always taking less salary or part time work.

    Joe tried to take vacation by pretending to need medical care, when he was caught, he refused to come to work & quit....but before he quit he erased years of legal work from the Borough computer exposing the tax payers to Discovery violation fines and the possible loss of an important law suit.

    (clearly the most expensive tempur tantrum in history)

    This Alaskan hopes Michelle Bachmann shows better judgement in the beautiful State of Minnesota!

    I care because Northerners stick together...maybe because we have a bond based on a basic truth; Big Mosquitoes means Big Fish! or maybe Northern Lights are gorgeous! Southern California, great weather every day; who needs that????

  • Leave a comment


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