Forty years after a Democrat named Nick Begich represented Alaska in Congress, his grandson is trying to reclaim that seat.
Republican Nick Begich is one of the candidates in the special election to fill the term of the late Rep. Don Young, as well as the primary for a full term.
After emerging among the top contenders in the Aug. 16 ranked-choice primary, Begich will advance to the November general election for a full term representing Alaska’s greater congressional district.
Preliminary results in both the special election and the full-term primary had Begich in third place, behind Democrat and Alaska Native Mary Peltola and Republican former Gov. Sarah Palin.
The results of the special election will not be available until at least August 31st. In a new batch of returns released Friday, Begich is in third place with 27.8 percent, behind former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, who has 30.9 percent, and Democrat Mary Peltola leading with 39.6 percent. , the Anchorage Daily News reports.
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Here’s what you need to know about Begich.
Who is Nick Begich III?
Nicholas Begich III, earned a BA in Business from Baylor University and an MBA from Indiana University.
He founded FarShore Partners, a technology development firm, according to Ballotpedia.
Begich’s website says he served on the board of the Alaska Civic Forum, “an organization dedicated to advancing opportunity through economic freedom and individual liberty.”
He was the co-chair of the Alaska GOP Finance Committee and Young’s 2020 re-election campaign.
Begich has experience in corporate and startup settings and is involved in business management in Alaska and abroad, his website said.
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Political family ties
Begich’s grandfather, Democratic Rep. Nick Begich Sr., won election in 1970 for an Alaska congressional district, but disappeared two years later on a flight from Anchorage to Juneau, the Anchorage Daily News reported.
Young filled that position.
Begich’s uncles are former Sen. Mark Begich, D-Alaska, who served in Congress from 2009-2015, and current state Sen. Tom Begich, D-Alaska.
Begich said he “agrees with the Supreme Court’s decision” when asked by Alaska Public Media if he thinks Congress should protect access to abortion.
Begich does not support gun control legislation and said he supports Second Amendment rights, according to the Anchorage Daily News.
Begich did not immediately respond to whether he believes President Joe Biden “legitimately” won the election when asked by Alaska Public Media. Instead, he acknowledged that Biden is president, but said there is a “crisis” of trust “in our electoral system” and “restoring” it “requires improved public transparency.”
Also in that interview, Begich said he does not believe transgender athletes should be allowed to play sports in the gender they identify with.
Why is it running?
Begich III told Alaska Public Media in an interview that he is “running for Congress to bring new energy and solutions to the job. I will work hard to provide the leadership and representation that the people of Alaska deserve.”
Begich, who describes himself as a “lifelong Republican,” said his top priorities “will be creating economic opportunity that unlocks generational wealth for the people of our great state,” according to public media reports Alaska Update.
Begich in ranked voting
Begic said he is not happy with Alaska’s new voting system, saying it creates “confusion,” but he will accept the results.
“I will absolutely accept these election results. I have confidence in our election process here in the state of Alaska,” Begits told NBC News on August 15
This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Nick Begich runs against Palin, Peltola for Young’s Alaska House seat