Sullivan Re-elected to Senate

The slow Alaska count came out as expected.

Democrats’ slim hope of winning a Senate seat in staunchly Republican Alaska has not materialized.

The Hill (“Sullivan wins reelection in Alaska, giving Republicans 50 seats in Senate“):

Sen. Dan Sullivan (R) on Wednesday was projected to have won a second term representing Alaska, securing 50 seats in the Senate for Republicans in the next Congress.

CNN and NBC News both called the race shortly before 10 a.m. EST.

Sullivan defeated Al Gross, an independent who was backed by national Democrats in their effort to flip the seat. Gross is a former orthopedic surgeon and commercial fisherman and is the son of former Alaska Attorney General Avrum Gross (D).

Polls had consistently shown Sullivan narrowly leading in the race, but outside groups poured millions of dollars in the lead-up to Election Day as some surveys showed the race would be competitive.

The loss marked another state where Democrats failed to unseat Republicans in seats seen as closely contested. Sens. Susan Collins (R-Maine), Joni Ernst (R-Iowa) and Thom Tillis (R-N.C.) all won reelection in states highly targeted by Democrats.

Throughout the campaign, Sullivan swatted away attacks that he was tied too closely to President Trump, an argument Democrats hoped would influence voters in a state that prizes its independent tilt, and excoriated Gross for what he said were exaggerated claims to independence and close ties to Democrats.

As recently as Tuesday, Gross tweeted that more than 100,000 ballots were outstanding in the race, adding “we can win this.”

Again, this is really no surprise and, indeed, most were already factoring this in. As expected, all will come down to the dual run-off in Georgia. If both Democrats win, the Senate will be a 50-50 split with Vice President Kamala Harris able to break the tie.

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James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College and a nonresident senior fellow at the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security at the Atlantic Council. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm vet. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.


  1. OzarkHillbilly says:

    Obviously there was election fraud. No way could a man who was leading in all the polls win on election day except thru fraudulent means. I’ll bet he didn’t even have a single boat parade.

  2. mattbernius says:

    To @OzarkHillbilly’s the extended Trump family is already celebrating this election that was *called by the media* — like most states AK is still counting ballots.