Nov. 8 is the final day to vote in Alaska’s general election

Here’s what to know about Election Day and how to vote

By: - November 7, 2022 2:04 pm
A voter joins a line of voters waiting to cast their ballots on Aug. 15 at the state Division of Elections office in Anchorage. (Photo by Yereth Rosen/Alaska Beacon)

A voter joins a line of voters waiting to cast their ballots at the state Division of Elections office in Anchorage. (Photo by Yereth Rosen/Alaska Beacon)

Tuesday, Nov. 8, is Election Day and polls across Alaska are open 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. 

Voters get to decide several races – who Alaska sends to D.C., who will lead the state as governor, and who will be sent to the state capital. Voters will also weigh in on a once-in-a-decade ballot measure question and what judges to retain. Tuesday is the final day to vote in Alaska’s general election.

Ranked choice voting

This is the second time Alaska voters will be doing ranked choice voting, which allows voters to rank candidates in order of preference. The first time was in August during the special general election for Alaska’s U.S. representative.

“This election looks a lot different though because for that one, there was just one race. This election has United States senator, United States representative, governor/lieutenant governor, state Senate and state House races that will all be done via the ranked choice voting model,” Alaska Division of Elections Director Gail Fenumiai said Monday.

A ballot for Alaska’s Nov. 8, 2022, general election is seen on Monday, Oct. 24, the first day of early voting. (Photo by James Brooks/Alaska Beacon)

The races for U.S. senator, U.S. representative and governor/lieutenant governor will appear on every ballot. Races for state senator and state representative will differ depending on where you live (only Senate District T, which includes House districts 39 and 40, does not have an election for state senator on the ballot).

See a sample ballot for your district here. Find out which Senate and House districts you’re in by entering your address into the Alaska Division of Elections Precincts map.

Fenumiai recommends voters look at a sample ballot ahead of time.

“They can practice ranking and marking, and be prepared when they get to the booth. The front side will have all the ranked choice voting races and the back side will have the constitutional convention yes-or-no question, as well as judicial candidates who are up for retention. Those are also yes or no votes,” she said. 

Ballot measure and judges

All voters will be asked the yes or no question in Ballot Measure No. 1: Shall there be a constitutional convention?

Every 10 years, the state constitution requires the lieutenant governor to place the question on a general election ballot, if a convention hasn’t been held. A “yes” vote supports holding a state constitutional convention. A “no” vote opposes holding a convention. At a convention, the state constitution may be amended or revised, subject to approval by the voters.

Judges who are up for retention will also be on the ballot. Every voter will vote yes or no on a Court of Appeals judge. Then, based on judicial district, voters will also vote yes or no on Superior Court and or District Court judges. Learn more about the judges on the 2022 ballot on the Alaska Judicial Council website or on the Division of Elections candidates webpage.

Find your polling place

As of Monday, Fenumiai said all polling places across the state will be staffed with election workers on Tuesday, “so precincts will be open in all 401 precincts,” she said.

If you don’t know your polling place, there are a few ways to figure out where you should vote. You can enter your address into the Alaska Division of Elections Precincts map, enter your name and city in the Division of Elections Voter Information website, or call any Division of Elections regional office. All methods will give your polling place and precinct number. The precincts map will also list your House district number and Senate district letter.

As an alternative, any voter can also vote at a Division of Elections regional office in Juneau, Anchorage, Fairbanks, Nome or Wasilla; the University of Alaska Anchorage Student Union; Anchorage City Hall; the Anchorage airport; University of Alaska Fairbanks Wood Center; the 8th floor of the State Office Building in Juneau; or Service Area 10 Camp in Prudhoe Bay from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Election Day. Each location will have ballots for all 40 different House districts.

A polling place sign at the State Office Building in Juneau on Aug. 15, 2022.
A polling place sign at the State Office Building in Juneau. (Photo by Lisa Phu/Alaska Beacon)

Voters should bring a government-issued ID, such as a voter ID, driver’s license, state ID, tribal ID, military ID, passport, or hunting or fishing license. You can present a current utility bill or paycheck, government check or bank statement or other government-issued document that shows your name and current address.

“We can’t predict that there’s going to be long lines, but we just encourage people’s patience and to be prepared as much as they can be for how they want to fill out the ballot,” Fenumiai said. “Polling places open at 7 a.m. and close at 8 p.m. If you are in line at 8 p.m. but have not physically received your ballot, you’re still able to vote.”

Voting assistance

Voters unable to vote in person because of age, illness or a disability can have someone pick up a ballot and deliver it to them to get voted. This is done through the special needs process.

“They can have somebody of their choice go to their precinct and pick up a ballot on their behalf. There’s a very detailed envelope that needs to get completed, so we encourage if voters are using that method that they have their personal representative pay close attention to what all is required on that envelope,” Fenumiai said.

Any voter can also have someone assist them at any stage of the voting process, though the person offering assistance cannot be a candidate in the election, your employer, an agent of your employer or an agent of your union. Assistance can include help inside the voting booth with reading and/or marking the ballot.

The same assistance can be used by those needing language assistance.

“They can have anybody of their choice help them,” Fenumiai said. “We also have bilingual poll workers in a number of our precincts, as well as a language assistance toll free number where they can call to receive assistance.” That toll free number is 1-866-954-8683.

Other voting reminders

If you are voting by mail and have a by-mail ballot, it must be postmarked on or before Nov. 8. 

“We are encouraging voters to take their ballot to the clerk in the post office and have them hand cancel it, make sure that the voters themselves have signed and provide an identifier and they have a witness signature,” Fenumiai said.

Voters with by-mail ballots can also be hand delivered to a voting location by 8 p.m.  

Likewise, if you received a ballot via electronic transmission – by-fax ballot delivery or online ballot delivery – it must be returned on or before 8 p.m. Alaska time on Nov. 8.

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Be informed

The Alaska Beacon worked with Alaska Public Media, the Anchorage Daily News and KTOO on a candidate comparison tool for the three statewide races for governor, U.S. Senate and U.S. House of Representatives.

The Beacon released its own questionnaire for all of the races, including legislative races, in July. Most candidates who answered questions are on the ballot in the general election. Individual races can be found on the pages for U.S. Senate candidates, U.S. House candidates, governor candidates, state Senate candidates and state House candidates.

The Beacon has done stories about several individual legislative races. They include stories that cover:

Find other Alaska Beacon election coverage on its Election 2022 webpage.

Want more election coverage?

Visit NewsFromTheStates.com to monitor national trends and read the latest from across the States Newsroom network.

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Lisa Phu
Lisa Phu

Lisa Phu covers justice, education, and culture for the Alaska Beacon. Previously, she spent eight years as an award-winning journalist, reporting for the Juneau Empire, KTOO Public Media, KSTK, and Wrangell Sentinel. She's also been Public Information Officer for the City and Borough of Juneau, lead facilitator for StoryCorps Alaska based in Utqiagvik, and a teacher in Tanzania and Bhutan. Originally from New York, Lisa is a first generation Chinese American and a mom of two young daughters. She can be contacted at [email protected]

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