Less Partisan Elections in Alaska 2022? These Not So United States (AK Part One)

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In our continuing state series, TPP visits the state with the highest percentage of non-partisan voters (58%): vast and varied Alaska. On August 16, 2022, for the first time in the US, Alaskans will use the final four voting system, which combines a unified open primary with ranked choice voting in the general election.

Our special guests for this episode, each interviewed by TPP Reporter Dylan Nicholls, offer three perspectives on Alaskan political culture, the new election system, and the major candidates.

  • Brendan Jones, an Alaska-based author, describes the strong independent, survivalist streak at work in our nation’s largest state.
  • Independent Alaska House member Calvin Schrage speaks to the value of political independence as a legislator, noting how it allows him to form policy positions based on their merits.
  • Liz Ruskin of Alaska Public Media, explains how final four voting was intended to operate and some of the unintended consequences she’s observed so far.

Original music by Ryan Adair Rooney

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Our Guests

  • Liz Ruskin is the Washington, D.C., correspondent for Alaska Public Media. She reports from the U.S. Capitol and from Anchorage. Find her on Twitter @lruskin.
  • Calvin Schrage is an independent Alaska State Senator representing District 25. You can find him on Twitter @CalvinSchrage.
  • Brendan Jones is an award-winning novelist, essayist, and journalist based in Sitka, Alaska. Find him on Twitter @BrendanIJones.

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