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District 31 voted Republican down the ballot and opposed Ballot Measure 1

Photo courtesy of Jeremy Hsieh/KTOO

In the race for House District 31, Republican nominee Sarah Vance beat former Republican and non-partisan candidate Paul Seaton, ending his 16-year run in the Alaska House of Representatives.

The unofficial turnout districtwide was 44 percent, lower than the 2016 presidential election. Roughly 66 percent of voters turned out in 2016 and 59 percent voted in the 2014 midterms.

Seaton carried three of the nine precincts within the district Tuesday evening: Diamond Ridge, Kachemak City-Fritz Creek and Homer precinct no. 1, though he took that precinct by just one vote.

Homer precinct no. 2 voted overwhelmingly in favor of Vance. Homer voters make up roughly 30 percent of all voters in the district. Homer residents were also the most familiar with Vance prior to the election. Vance was the face of a controversial Homer City Council recall campaign and she also attempted to run for a seat on the council.

Vance also carried Anchor Point and Kasilof, the second and fourth largest precincts in the district, by wide margins.

The district also leaned towards Republican candidates in the U.S. House and gubernatorial races. U.S. House Rep. Don Young received 55 percent of the vote, and 44 percent of District 31 voters cast their ballot in favor of Independent Alyse Galvin. Republican candidate Mike Dunleavy also beat his Democratic opponent Mark Begich by 17 percentage points.

Like the rest of the state, District 31 voters also opposed Ballot Measure 1 by a wide margin. The ballot initiative would have implemented more regulations on development affecting salmon habitat. Nearly 60 percent of district residents voted against the measure

Aaron Bolton has moved on to a new position in Montana; he is no longer KBBI News Director. KBBI is currently seeking a News Director, and Kathleen Gustafson is filling in for the time being.
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