United States Senate elections in Alaska, 2014

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2014 U.S. Senate Elections in Alaska

General Election Date
November 4, 2014

Primary Date
August 19, 2014

November 4 Election Winner:
Pending
Incumbent prior to election:
Mark Begich Democratic Party
Mark Begich.jpg

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2014 U.S. House Elections

Flag of Alaska.png
Voters in Alaska will elect one member to the U.S. Senate in the election on November 4, 2014.

Incumbent Mark Begich holds one of the most vulnerable Senate seats going into the 2014 election. He has only served one term in the Senate and is a Democrat seeking re-election in a red state. This, combined with the unpopularity of the Affordable Care Act and Begich's support for it, makes this race a toss-up.[1]

Four Republican candidates have stepped up to challenge Begich: Lt. Gov Mead Treadwell, former Commissioner of Natural Resources Daniel S. Sullivan, Joe Miller and John Jaramillo. As of May 2014, Sullivan appears to be the favorite in the Republican primary. He leads the other Republican candidates in both fundraising and polls.

Candidate Filing Deadline Primary Election General Election
June 2, 2014
August 19, 2014
November 4, 2014

Primary: Alaska is one of 21 states with a mixed primary system. Parties decide who may vote in their primary election. The Alaska Democratic Party, Alaska Libertarian Party and Alaskan Independence Party allow any registered voters. The Alaska Republican Party allows only registered Republicans, nonpartisan or undeclared voters.[2]

Voter registration: Voters must register to vote in the primary by July 20, 2014.[3] For the general election, the voter registration deadline is October 5, 2014.[4]

See also: Alaska elections, 2014

Incumbent: The election will fill the Senate seat currently held by Mark Begich (D). Begich was first elected in 2008.

Candidates

Rumored but not running

Race background

Incumbent Mark Begich is a Democratic senator in a red state, making his seat one of the most vulnerable in 2014. The unpopularity of President Obama's healthcare mandate, combined with its poor implementation thus far, is likely to be a major issue that Begich will have to overcome in order to win re-election.

Dan Sullivan is the Republican frontrunner in the race as of May 2014. He had nearly $2 million available as of the FEC's April Quarterly, compared to Miller's $300,000 and Treadwell's $142,000.[5][6][7] Additionally, polling thus far has shown Sullivan leading the Republican field.

Campaign spending

Put Alaska First, a super PAC that supports incumbent Mark Begich, announced plans to buy over $4 million in ads prior to the general election.[8] In response to this news, a number of Republican groups reserved airtime following the primary. Challenger Dan Sullivan bought $480,000 in ads from September 23 through November 4.[9] American Crossroads is reserving $5.5 million in ads this fall.[10] The National Republican Senatorial Committee also reserved $2.2 million in ads.

Race ratings

Most vulnerable seats

The Fiscal Times compiled a list of the seven most vulnerable Senate seats up for election in 2014. The seven included in the list are: Alaska, Arkansas, Iowa, Louisiana, North Carolina, South Dakota, and West Virginia. Going into the 2014 election, all seven seats are held by Democrats.[1]

Democratic incumbent Mark Begich defeated Ted Stevens in 2008 to win the seat. However, the potential loss of jobs at Eielson Air Force Base near Fairbanks could cause Begich to take a hit in his bid for re-election.[1]

Early polling indicated that Gov. Sean Parnell (R) could have been Begich’s strongest opponent, but Parnell decided not to enter the race. The seat is considered a toss-up.[1]

Washington Post top 10 races

According to an analysis by The Washington Post, the U.S. Senate election in Alaska is considered one of the top 10 Senate races of 2014. When Alaska attorney general Dan Sullivan entered the race in late 2013, the Republican primary field became even more murky.[11]

Media

Mark Begich released a radio ad on August 19, 2013, highlighting his opposition to the No Child Left Behind Act. The ad states that the No Child Left Behind Act does not work with the diversity of Alaska's schools.[12]

Dan Sullivan

Supporting


Ad in which Condoleezza Rice defends Dan Sullivan

Sullivan for U.S. Senate: "Service"

Sullivan for U.S. Senate: "Big Heart"

Sullivan for U.S. Senate: "Cheap Talk"

Sullivan for U.S. Senate: "Basin"

Opposing

Put Alaska First released four ads attacking Dan Sullivan.[13] VoteVets.org also released an ad attacking Sullivan for not protecting the rights of Alaskans.[14]


Put Alaska First - Sullivan's Real Home

Put Alaska First - Lost

Put Alaska First ad attacking the Koch brothers

Put Alaska First - Never Forget

VoteVets.org ad attacking Sullivan

Mark Begich

Supporting


Road -- Mark Begich for U.S. Senate

Put Alaska First ad supporting Obamacare

Mark Begich - Polar Ice

Mark Begich - Clinic

Opposing

Americans for Prosperity released an ad attacking Begich for not keeping his word.[15] The American Energy Alliance also released an attack ad targeting Begich for supporting the Carbon Tax.[16]


Senator Begich Needs to Keep His Word

American Energy Alliance ad attacking Begich

Key votes

Below are important votes the current incumbent cast during the 113th Congress.

Government shutdown

See also: United States budget debate, 2013

Voted "Yes" During the shutdown in October 2013, the Senate rejected, down party lines, every House-originated bill that stripped the budget of funding for the Affordable Care Act. A deal was reached late on October 16, 2013, just hours before the debt ceiling deadline. The bill to reopen the government, H.R. 2775, lifted the $16.7 trillion debt limit and funded the government through January 15, 2014. Federal employees also received retroactive pay for the shutdown period. The only concession made by Senate Democrats was to require income verification for Obamacare subsidies.[17] The final vote on H.R. 2775 was 81-18, with all 18 votes against the bill from Republican members. Mark Begich voted with the Democratic Party for the bill.[18]

Endorsements

Governor Sean Parnell decided to stay neutral in the Republican primary and did not endorse either his lieutenant governor, Mead Treadwell, or his former director of natural resources, Dan Sullivan. He stated, "I think both could be excellent U.S. senators, so I’ve chosen to stay out of taking an official position."[19]

Joe Miller

  • Miller received the endorsements of two of the most prominent groups which advocate for Second Amendment rights, The Gun Owners of America’s Political Victory Fund and the National Association for Gun Rights PAC.[20]
  • Alaska Right to Life PAC: "The pro-life position Joe Miller takes isn’t merely a common political platitude, but is centered in the core of who he is. Joe will be a champion for the pro-life cause in Washington and is exactly the caliber of man we need representing Alaska in the US Senate. Alaska Right to Life’s Political Action Committee is proud to endorse him."[21]

Dan Sullivan

Sullivan was endorsed by the Club for Growth PAC in the Republican primary. Club President Chris Chocola said, "Dan Sullivan is a fiscal conservative with a stellar track record in Alaska and we strongly endorse him for the United States Senate. Dan has fought for pro-growth tax reform, taken on ObamaCare in court, and beaten back federal overreach by Obama’s EPA. In the Senate, Dan Sullivan will continue the fight for economic freedom and we can’t wait to see him help deliver for America the kinds of pro-growth policies he’s already delivered for Alaska."[22]

Mead Treadwell

  • RedState Editor-in-Chief Erick Erickson: Treadwell "is better on the stand your ground law in Alaska than his opponent."[23]

Polls

Republican primary

Republican primary
Poll Joe Miller Daniel S. SullivanMead TreadwellOther/UndecidedMargin of ErrorSample Size
Public Policy Polling (January 30-February 1, 2014)
20%30%25%23%+/-4.7442
Dan Sullivan internal poll (April 27-28, 2014)
12%38%22%28%+/-4500
Public Policy Polling (May 8-11, 2014)
14%40%26%20%+/-5.5313
Dittman Research (May 27-29, 2014)
12%37%35%16%+/-4.4500
AVERAGES 14.5% 36.25% 27% 21.75% +/-4.65 438.75
Note: The polls above may not reflect all polls that have been conducted in this race. Those displayed are a random sampling chosen by Ballotpedia staff. If you would like to nominate another poll for inclusion in the table, send an email to editor@ballotpedia.org

Begich vs. Treadwell

Mark Begich vs. Mead Treadwell
Poll Mark Begich Mead TreadwellNot Sure/OtherMargin of ErrorSample Size
Public Policy Polling (May 8-11, 2014)
41%33%26%+/-4.1582
Harper Polling (September 24-25, 2013)
43%42%15%+/-3.62731
AVERAGES 42% 37.5% 20.5% +/-3.86 656.5
Note: The polls above may not reflect all polls that have been conducted in this race. Those displayed are a random sampling chosen by Ballotpedia staff. If you would like to nominate another poll for inclusion in the table, send an email to editor@ballotpedia.org


Mark Begich vs. Mead Treadwell/3rd Party candidates
Poll Mark Begich Mead TreadwellZachary KileTed GianoutsosSidney HillNot SureMargin of ErrorSample Size
Public Policy Polling (January 30-February 1, 2014)
43%37%5%1%1%13%+/-3.4850
Note: The polls above may not reflect all polls that have been conducted in this race. Those displayed are a random sampling chosen by Ballotpedia staff. If you would like to nominate another poll for inclusion in the table, send an email to editor@ballotpedia.org

Begich vs. Sullivan

Mark Begich vs. Dan Sullivan
Poll Mark Begich Dan SullivanNot Sure/OtherMargin of ErrorSample Size
Public Policy Polling (May 8-11, 2014)
43%37%20%+/-4.1582
Dan Sullivan internal poll (April 27-28, 2014)
44%42%14%+/-4500
Harper Polling (September 24-25, 2013)
43%41%16%+/-3.62731
AVERAGES 43.33% 40% 16.67% +/-3.91 604.33
Note: The polls above may not reflect all polls that have been conducted in this race. Those displayed are a random sampling chosen by Ballotpedia staff. If you would like to nominate another poll for inclusion in the table, send an email to editor@ballotpedia.org


Mark Begich vs. Dan Sullivan/3rd Party candidates
Poll Mark Begich Dan SullivanZachary KileTed GianoutsosSidney HillNot SureMargin of ErrorSample Size
Public Policy Polling (January 30-February 1, 2014)
41%37%6%1%2%13%+/-3.4850
Note: The polls above may not reflect all polls that have been conducted in this race. Those displayed are a random sampling chosen by Ballotpedia staff. If you would like to nominate another poll for inclusion in the table, send an email to editor@ballotpedia.org

Begich vs. Miller

Mark Begich vs. Joe Miller
Poll Mark Begich Joe MillerNot SureMargin of ErrorSample Size
Public Policy Polling (May 8-11, 2014)
43%27%30%+/-4.1582
Harper Polling (September 24-25, 2013)
55%28%18%+/-3.62731
AVERAGES 49% 27.5% 24% +/-3.86 656.5
Note: The polls above may not reflect all polls that have been conducted in this race. Those displayed are a random sampling chosen by Ballotpedia staff. If you would like to nominate another poll for inclusion in the table, send an email to editor@ballotpedia.org


Mark Begich vs. Joe Miller/3rd Party candidates
Poll Mark Begich Joe MillerZachary KileTed GianoutsosSidney HillNot SureMargin of ErrorSample Size
Public Policy Polling (January 30-February 1, 2014)
45%25%5%1%2%21%+/-3.4850
Note: The polls above may not reflect all polls that have been conducted in this race. Those displayed are a random sampling chosen by Ballotpedia staff. If you would like to nominate another poll for inclusion in the table, send an email to editor@ballotpedia.org

Campaign contributions

Candidate Ballot Access
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Mark Begich

Mark Begich (2014) Campaign Finance Reports
ReportDate FiledBeginning BalanceTotal Contributions
for Reporting Period
ExpendituresCash on Hand
April Quarterly[24]April 15, 2013$952,260.37$947,943.67$(382,271.15)$1,517,932.89
July Quarterly[25]July 15, 2013$1,517,932.89$993,064.55$(462,594.51)$2,048,402.93
October Quarterly[26]October 15, 2013$2,048,402.93$813,189.58$(428,646.86)$2,432,945.65
Year-End[27]January 31, 2014$2,432,945$849,363$(473,012)$2,809,296
April Quarterly[28]April 15, 2014$2,809,281$1,045,615$(1,036,720)$2,818,176
Running totals
$4,649,175.8$(2,783,244.52)

Mead Treadwell

Mead Treadwell (2014) Campaign Finance Reports
ReportDate FiledBeginning BalanceTotal Contributions
for Reporting Period
ExpendituresCash on Hand
April Quarterly[29]July 15, 2013$10,000.00$10,300.00$(11,660.43)$8,639.57
July Quarterly[30]July 15, 2013$8,639.57$170,270.51$(48,560.77)$130,349.31
October Quarterly[31]October 15, 2013$130,349.31$196,307.58$(171,769.14)$154,887.75
Year-End[32]January 29, 2014$154,887$229,056$(289,140)$94,803
April Quarterly[33]April 15, 2014$94,803$298,993$(251,046)$142,749
Running totals
$904,927.09$(772,176.34)
**As of the 2014 April Quarterly Report, Treadwell's campaign committee owed $175,500 in outstanding loans to Mead Treadwell.

Joe Miller

Joe Miller (2014) Campaign Finance Reports
ReportDate FiledBeginning BalanceTotal Contributions
for Reporting Period
ExpendituresCash on Hand
April Quarterly[34]April 15, 2013$426,783.51$47.14$(850.00)$425,980.65
July Quarterly[35]July 15, 2013$425,980.65$18,394.34$(126,920.07)$317,454.92
October Quarterly[36]October 15, 2013$317,454.92$13,691.00$(43,440.49)$287,705.43
Year-End[37]January 31, 2014$287,705$30,490$(86,489)$231,705
April Quarterly[38]April 15, 2014$231,705$101,400$(37,751)$295,354
Running totals
$164,022.48$(295,450.56)

Daniel Sullivan

Daniel Sullivan (2014) Campaign Finance Reports
ReportDate FiledBeginning BalanceTotal Contributions
for Reporting Period
ExpendituresCash on Hand
Year-End[39]January 31, 2014$0$1,276,151$(158,723)$1,117,427
April Quarterly[40]April 14, 2014$1,117,427$1,411,123$(544,140)$1,984,423
Running totals
$2,687,274$(702,863)

Election history

2010

On November 2, 2010, Lisa Murkowski won re-election to the United States Senate. She defeated Joe Miller (R), Scott T. McAdams (D), Frederick Haase (L), Tim Carter (Nonaffiliated) and Ted Gianoutsos (Nonaffiliated) in the general election.[41]

U.S. Senate, Alaska General Election, 2010
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Write-in Green check mark transparent.pngLisa Murkowski incumbent 39.7% 101,091
     Republican Joe Miller 35.6% 90,839
     Democratic Scott T. McAdams 23.6% 60,045
     Libertarian Frederick Haase 0.6% 1,459
     Nonaffiliated Tim Carter 0.4% 927
     Nonaffiliated Ted Gianoutsos 0.2% 458
Total Votes 254,819

2008

On November 4, 2008, Mark Begich won election to the United States Senate. He defeated Ted Stevens (R), Bob Bird (Alaskan Independence), Frederick Haase (L) and Ted Gianoutsos (NPA) in the general election.[42]

U.S. Senate, Alaska General Election, 2008
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Democratic Green check mark transparent.pngMark Begich 47.8% 151,767
     Republican Ted Stevens incumbent 46.5% 147,814
     Alaskan Independence Bob Bird 4.2% 13,197
     Libertarian Frederick Haase 0.8% 2,483
     No Party Affiliation Ted Gianoutsos 0.4% 1,385
     N/A Write-in 0.3% 1,077
Total Votes 317,723

See also

External links

References

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 Fiscal Times, "7 Senate Seats Most at Risk—Hint: They’re All Blue" accessed February 15, 2013
  2. State of Alaska Division of Elections Website, "Primary Election Information," accessed January 2, 2014
  3. DMV.org, "Voter Registration in Alaska," accessed January 3, 2014
  4. State of Alaska Division of Elections "2014 Election Dates and Hours," accessed February 19, 2014
  5. Federal Election Commission, "Daniel Sullivan April Quarterly," accessed April 29, 2014
  6. Federal Election Commission, "Joe Miller April Quarterly," accessed April 29, 2014
  7. Federal Election Commission, "Mead Treadwell April Quarterly," accessed April 29, 2014
  8. Alaska Dispatch, "Begich super PAC will drop more than $4M on campaign ads," accessed May 19, 2014
  9. The Washington Post, "READ IN: Friday, May 16, 2014: No earmarks in WRRDA, Ernst leads Iowa field, Crossroads lands in Alaska, White House has ‘commitment’ from Boehner, and Biden’s book royalties," May 16, 2014
  10. Politico Pro, "Campaigns," accessed May 19, 2014
  11. The Washington Post, "The Fix’s top 10 Senate races of 2014," accessed December 10, 2013
  12. Politico, "Mark Begich launching ad on education," August 19, 2013
  13. YouTube, "Put Alaska First - Sullivan's Real Home," accessed February 13, 2014
  14. Youtube, ""Oath" - VoteVets.org Ad In Alaska," accessed July 2, 2014
  15. YouTube, "Senator Begich Needs to Keep His Word," accessed February 24, 2014
  16. YouTube, "Two Begiches," accessed July 2, 2014
  17. The Washington Post, "Reid, McConnell propose bipartisan Senate bill to end shutdown, extend borrowing," accessed October 16, 2013
  18. Senate.gov, "H.R. 2775 As Amended," accessed October 31, 2013
  19. Politico, "Parnell staying out of Alaska Sen. race," November 21, 2013
  20. Delta News Web, "National Association for Gun Rights PAC Endorses Joe Miller for U.S. Senate," March 18, 2014
  21. People's Pundit Daily, "Alaska Senate Candidate Joe Miller Picks Up Key Endorsement From Pro-Life Group," April 17, 2014
  22. Club for Growth, "Club for Growth PAC Endorses Dan Sullivan For U.S. Senate," March 12, 2014
  23. Treadwell for United States Senate, "Red State’S Erickson Endorses Mead Treadwell," June 18, 2014
  24. Federal Election Commission, "Mark Begich April Quarterly," accessed July 22, 2013
  25. Federal Election Commission, "Mark Begich July Quarterly," accessed October 28, 2013
  26. Federal Election Commission, "Mark Begich October Quarterly," accessed October 28, 2013
  27. Federal Election Commission, "Mark Begich Year-End," accessed February 14, 2014
  28. Federal Election Commission, "Mark Begich April Quarterly," accessed April 29, 2014
  29. Federal Election Commission, "Mead Treadwell April Quarterly," accessed July 28, 2013
  30. Federal Election Commission, "Mead Treadwell July Quarterly," accessed July 28, 2013
  31. Federal Election Commission, "Mead Treadwell October Quarterly," accessed October 28, 2013
  32. Federal Election Commission, "Mead Treadwell Year-End," accessed February 14, 2014
  33. Federal Election Commission, "Mead Treadwell April Quarterly," accessed April 29, 2014
  34. Federal Election Commission, "Joe Miller April Quarterly," accessed July 28, 2013
  35. Federal Election Commission, "Joe Miller July Quarterly," accessed July 28, 2013
  36. Federal Election Commission, "Joe Miller October Quarterly," accessed October 28, 2013
  37. Federal Election Commission, "Joe Miller Year-End," accessed February 14, 2014
  38. Federal Election Commission, "Joe Miller April Quarterly," accessed April 29, 2014
  39. Federal Election Commission, "Daniel Sullivan Year-End," accessed February 14, 2014
  40. Federal Election Commission, "Daniel Sullivan April Quarterly," accessed April 29, 2014
  41. U.S. Congress House Clerk, "Statistics of the Congressional Election of November 2, 2010," accessed March 28, 2013
  42. U.S. Congress House Clerk, "Statistics of the Congressional Election of November 4, 2008," accessed March 28, 2013