Something Rotten In The State Of Alaska

Ken AshfordElection 20081 Comment

Alaska And it ain't fish.

Consider that this was the most polarizing election in modern American history.

Consider that most states saw incredibly — sometimes record — high voter turnout.

Consider that Alaska, for the first time in its history, had one of its own on the presidential ballot.

Consider that Alaska saw a 12.8% hike in the turnout for the August presidential primaries (before Palin was selected as a VP candidate).

Consider that Alaska also had a very high-profile Senate race involving Stevens (a convicted felon) and Begich.

Consider ALL that, and you would THINK that Alaskans would be energized and the state would have had a very high voter turnout.

But it didn't.  The turnout on November 4 was down 11% from 2004.

Why?  One could argue that it was because Obama's win was a foregone conclusion by the time Alaskans, being in a very west time zone, were able to vote.  (McCain conceded to Obama at 7:15 pm Alaskan time, well before polls closed there).

That may have played a factor, but then again — there was still the hot Stevens-Begich election.  Why didn't Alaskans turn out anyway, for that?

And on that note, it's even smellier.

While polls are not perfect, they were pretty good on all races this year, usually predicting the outcome with no more than a 4% error.

Rasmussen Reports, for example, accurately predicted every Senate race in the country within the margin of error in their most recent polls — except for Alaska.

In fact, ALL the polls prior to election day had Begich winning by an average of 10.3%.  Yet Stevens won by 1.3%.  That's a Republican shift of 11.8%. 

The same phenomenon happened with the Presidental race.  The polls were off by 10.8% (shifting Republican). 

And for the Alaska seat for the House, the polls were off by 16.5% (shfiting Republican).  The Democrat favored to win by about 4%, lost by about 12%.

It's just very odd that the voter turnout was so low, and two Republican lawmakers who were the subject of FBI corruption probes were re-elected – despite polls saying they would lose.

Did Democrats stay home that day?  Possibly.  Although, in every other state, Democrats were charged up and voted early.  Alaska, too, has early voting.  One wonders what happened to those ballots.

I'm not crying conspiracy here.  But Alaska is known for its political corruption, and, well…… hmmmmmm.