Trump wanted to stop the vote when he was ahead. Alaska’s congressional delegation urges patience

photo collage of three faces
Alaska’s congressional delegation. Photos by Wesley Early/Alaska Public Media and Skip Gray/360 North

Alaska’s all-Republican congressional delegation is not backing President Donald Trump’s call to stop counting votes.

Late Tuesday night, Sen. Dan Sullivan said states have to continue processing the vote in accordance with their own law.

“I haven’t heard what the president said, but every state is different, right?” Sullivan said, adding that the diversity helps ensure elections will be secure. “So, the president’s going to have to wait for Alaska the way they wait for other places to go through their process.”

Sen. Lisa Murkowski didn’t mention Trump in a statement she issued Wednesday, but said she urges “everyone to be patient.”

“It is critical that we give election officials time to complete their jobs, and that we ensure all lawfully cast ballots are allowed and counted,” Murkowski said.

She was not on the ballot this year.

Trump was ahead in several swing states on election night, but as predicted, Democratic challenger Joe Biden gained ground as more of the vote was counted. Nationally, Democrats voted in greater number by mail, and in many states and counties, those ballots were counted after the in-person vote was tallied. Trump alleged widespread fraud last night, although election observers say there’s no evidence of that.

A spokesman for Rep. Don Young’s congressional office said Young is confident votes “will be counted fairly and accurately.”

In all of Alaska’s federal races — for president, Sullivan’s Senate seat and the state’s lone House seat – Republicans held significant leads Wednesday, with more than 130,000 ballots yet to be counted.

Alaska Public Media’s Jeff Chen contributed to this story.

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Liz Ruskin covers Alaska issues in Washington as the network's D.C. correspondent. She was born in Anchorage and is a West High grad. She has degrees from the University of Washington and the University of Missouri School of Journalism in Columbia. She previously worked at the Homer News, the Anchorage Daily News and the Washington bureau of McClatchy Newspapers. She also freelanced for several years from the U.K. and Japan, in print and radio. Liz has been APRN’s Washington, D.C. correspondent since October 2013. She's @lruskin on Twitter. She welcomes your news tips at lruskin (at) alaskapublic (dot) org  | About Liz

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