Alaskan politics are a different breed from any other state. Although Alaska is known as a red state, it sometimes goes to an Independent like the current Governor Bill Walker. He was running against a Republican and a Democrat for his reelection, but now he’s abruptly dropped out of the race.
Last week, he lost his running mate to a sexual misconduct scandal, so the polls have shown his chances of winning have drastically decreased. Republican candidate Mike Dunleavy has a commanding lead. Walker did not want to lose, so he simply dropped out of the race. According to Anchorage Daily News, he has now endorsed Democratic nominee Mark Begich.
If Walker’s supporters follow him and vote for Mark Begich, and the poll numbers prove accurate, there is a very strong possibility that a Democrat is about to be the next Governor of Alaska. There are many unpredictable factors in this race, so it’s hard to be 100 percent about what’s going to happen, but all signs point to a major shake up.
In his speech at AFN, Walker talked up Begich as being better in sync with him than Dunleavy.
“On balance, it is my belief that despite my many differences with Mark Begich, his stance on important issues that I have listed are more closely aligned with my priorities for Alaska,” Walker said, citing his support of Medicaid expansion, pursuit of an Alaska natural gas pipeline project and state spending on rural Alaska and education.
“It is the honor of my life to have served as the governor of this great state,” he said.