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Young easily wins 21st House term; Coghill, Kelly, Wilson, Higgins in lead

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Posted: Tuesday, November 6, 2012 8:05 pm | Updated: 11:55 am, Mon Jan 21, 2013.

Updated 10:15 p.m.

FAIRBANKS - Alaskans went to the polls today to decide the makeup of the state Senate, whether Don Young will serve a 21st term in the U.S. House of Representatives, whether to spend hundreds of millions of dollars on construction and transportation projects, as well as cast their vote for president of the United States.

Alaskans favored Mitt Romney over President Barack Obama, although Obama had been declared the winner well before polls had closed in Alaska.

Young, 79, who has been in office since 1971, took a strong lead over Democratic state representative Sharon Cissna, who is best known for her stance against the Transportation Security Administration. With about half of precincts reporting, Young had 63 percent of the vote, Cissna had 29 percent. Jim McDermott, the Libertarian candidate, and Ted Gianoutsos who is on the ballot as an unaffiliated candidate, lagged far behind.

Redistricting has pitted several Interior Alaska incumbents against each other, with the makeup of the state Senate and its current bipartisan coalition in the balance.

• In District A, Republican Senate Minority Leader John Coghill Jr. is running against Democrat Sen. Joe Thomas. Coghill led, 57 percent to 42 percent.

• In District B, Democrat Joe Paskvan garnered 48 percent of the results, lagging behind Republican Pete Kelly, who pulled 51 percent with 11 of 13 precincts reporting.

• Republican Click Bishop had a wide lead over Democrat Anne Sudkamp in District C, 70 percent to 28 percent.

• In District T, Democrat Donny Olson pulled in 74 percent of the votes over Republican challenger Allen Minish.

• In Interior Alaska House races, Republican Doug Isaacson and Democrat Janice Golub are competing for District 1, which encompasses the North Pole area. With 6 of 7 precincts reporting, Isaacson held a broad lead over Golub with 76 percent of the total.

• For District 2, Republican Tammie Wilson led over Democratic Rep. Bob Miller, 52 percent to 48 percent, with 5 of 6 precincts in.

• Republican Steve Thompson is unopposed for the District 3 House seat.

• In District 4, incumbent Democratic Rep. Scott Kawasaki is facing a challenge from Republican David Pruhs. With 7 of 10 precincts reporting, Kawasaki led with 54 percent of the total.

• Pete Higgins, a Republican was leading with 53 percent of the total over Democrat David Watts in District 5.

• In District 6, incumbent Eric Feige, a Republican, had a strong lead over Democrat Jamey Duhamel, with 71 percent of the total.

• In newly created District 38, which encompasses a wide swath of communities stretching from Ester and the Goldstream Valley to Denali National Park and rural villages extending west to the Bering Sea, Republican Rep. Alan Dick is vying with Democratic Rep. David Guttenberg. Dorothy Schockley, who is unaffiliated, is also on the ballot. With 6 of 29 precincts reporting, Guttenberg had 56 percent of the total and Dick had 34 percent.

Alaskans also decided two ballot measures Tuesday.

Alaskans face a question that comes up every 10 years, which is whether to hold a constitutional convention to make changes to the state constitution. Sixty-seven percent of the voters were saying no, according to early results.

Alaskans were also asked to vote on Proposition A, a bond measure to pay for $453 million in construction and transportation projects, including $50 million for the Anchorage port expansion, the first leg of a long-talked-about road to Nome and other projects. With a quarter of the precincts reporting, the measure was winning approval with 57 percent of the total.

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