Sarah Palin defeated again in Alaska comeback bid

Former US vice-presidential candidate, Sarah Palin, is projected to have again lost her bid for a political comeback after this month’s midterm elections.

The Republican suffered her second defeat in three months to Mary Peltola, a Democrat, in the race for a US House of Representatives seat in Alaska.

Senator Lisa Murkowski is meanwhile projected to have beaten a fellow Republican challenger in her election.

The results won’t affect which parties run Congress after the midterms. Republicans will still take over the House, while Democrats retain the Senate. The Alaska race took two weeks to be called because the state used a new ranked-choice voting system.

CBS News, the BBC’s US partner, projected the result for Alaska’s at-large House seat on Wednesday night with 88 per cent of votes counted, showing Ms Peltola on 55 per cent and Ms Palin on 45 per cent.

Ms Peltola won the seat by three percentage points in a special election this August, her first victory over Ms Palin.

The Democrat’s win is notable in a conservative state that former President Donald Trump took by 10 points in 2020, and in a district that was Republican-held for nearly five decades.

Senator Murkowski – an incumbent moderate Republican who voted to impeach Mr Trump for incitement of insurrection after last year’s US Capitol riot – has also cruised to re-election.

With almost all votes counted, she has beaten Trump-endorsed intra-party challenger, Kelly Tshibaka, by more than seven points, CBS projects.

In 2020, Mr Trump vowed to campaign against Ms Murkowski, saying: “Get any candidate ready, good or bad, I don’t care, I’m endorsing. If you have a pulse, I’m with you!”

The former president – who has just launched another campaign for the White House – travelled in July to Anchorage to appear at a rally for Ms Palin and Ms Tshibaka.

Ms Peltola, who is Yup’ik and grew up in a rural part of Alaska, campaigned for abortion access, climate action and the state’s salmon populations.

She served in the statehouse in Juneau for a decade, overlapping with Ms Palin during her 2006-09 tenure as governor of Alaska. -BBC

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