Former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin lost to Democrat Mary Peltola on Wednesday in a special election to fill Alaska’s only U.S. House seat in a surprising defeat.
She is the first Alaska Native to represent a state where almost 20 percent of the population is indigenous, the highest proportion in the United States. She will also be the first woman to hold the seat. Young had held the seat for 49 years and became the longest-serving Republican in the history of the House.
During her campaign, Peltola ran as “Alaska’s best shot at keeping an extremist from winning,” according to her campaign website. She also said she was “the only candidate in this race who isn’t a multi-millionaire.”
Palin’s campaign for the House seat was her first run for public office after she was tapped by John McCain as his running mate in the presidential election in 2008. The two lost to then-presidential candidate Barack Obama and vice-presidential candidate Joe Biden.