Ballots have been mailed for the special primary election to fill Alaska’s lone U.S. House seat left vacant after the death of Rep. Don Young. Voters will choose one candidate from a field of 48.
State Division of Elections Director Gail Fenumiai says it’s important voters read all the instructions before casting their ballot.
“Vote your ballot. Get it back (to us). Make sure you sign, provide an identifier and have it witnessed. And get it postmarked on or before Election Day. There’s no postage required,” Fenumiai said.
If you make a mistake, Fenumiai says voters can contact any Division of Elections office for assistance, or to request a replacement ballot.
“So if someone makes a mistake on their by-mail ballot and doesn’t have an opportunity to ask for a replacement ballot, they can draw a line through their mistake and write ‘no,’ and then go and fill in the oval of their correct choice,” she said.
In addition to returning ballots by mail, she says ballots can also be cast or dropped off at the Division of Elections offices located in Juneau, Anchorage, Wasilla, Fairbanks and Nome. Mailed-in ballots must be postmarked by June 11 and received by June 21.
And though every registered voter is mailed a ballot, residents can still vote in person if they’d prefer. Early voting starts May 27 in many communities, including Ketchikan, Metlakatla, Craig, Klawock, Thorne Bay, Hydaburg and Kasaan. Even more communities are scheduled to offer in-person voting on election day, June 11, including Hollis and South Thorne Bay.
Fenumiai says ballot counting will begin on election day and completed on June 21.
Under Alaska’s new ranked choice voting system, the top four candidates will appear on the final special election ballot. That election will be held August 16, the same day as the regular primary election.
Registration for the special primary election is still open – the deadline is May 12.
For a link to a list of all communities offering in-person voting, and a link to register to vote, look for this story at KRBD.org.