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House races come down to the wire

Posted: Tuesday, November 07, 2000

ANCHORAGE (AP) -- Republican control of the Alaska House was at stake Tuesday as voters cast ballots in races across the state.

All 40 seats were on the ballot, but only about 15 featured tough races. Nine seats had no incumbent, sparking tough battles between would-be lawmakers in Anchorage, Fairbanks, the Kenai Peninsula and the islands of Southeast Alaska.

Candidates and their supporters braved the morning chill in Anchorage and Fairbanks to waves campaign signs at passing motorists.

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Eleven candidates had no opponent on the ballot, while more than a dozen others faced only light opposition.

In the current Legislature, the House has 26 Republicans and 14 Democrats. One Democrat, Richard Foster of Nome, is a member of the GOP-controlled majority, while four dissident Republicans split with the majority last year.

The new House will look substantially different regardless of the election's outcome. Five members are retiring this year, three are seeking Senate seats and one was defeated in the August primary.

This election will also be the last before the boundaries of lawmakers' districts are redrawn using the results of the 2000 census. Republicans took control of the Legislature after Gov. Walter Hickel's reapportionment board redrew the lines nearly a decade ago.



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