After a drawn-out recount process and a margin of victory of just 32 votes, Jonathan Kreiss-Tomkins ’12 won a seat in the Alaska State House of Representatives today, nearly a month after the Nov. 6 election.
The final tabulation, which was already delayed three weeks as election officials counted absentee ballots, came after Republican Bill Thomas called for a recount on Nov. 28, when Kreiss-Tomkins — who left Yale last spring to campaign for his seat — held a marginal 34-vote lead. But over the course of the recount, Kreiss-Tomkins gained five additional ballots and Thomas gained seven, according to the Juneau Empire, putting Kreiss-Tomkins with 32 votes in the lead.
The resolution of the race offered both candidates a sense of closure at the end of a long campaign.
“It’s nice to have a point of punctuation at the end of the election,” Kreiss-Tomkins told the Juneau Empire. Kreiss-Tomkins will now join 15 other Democrats in the Alaska State House of Representatives.
A native of Sitka, Alaska, Kreiss-Tomkins said his goal for his post is to advocate for every “community, no matter how small, no matter how remote or isolated.” In an earlier interview with the News, he said a motivating factor to his campaign had been the recent push within the Alaska Legislature to eliminate taxes on oil companies.
“Cutting the budget and giving back the money to highly profitable multinational companies would be giving away billions of dollars that was going to helping schools, roads and communities,” Kreiss-Tomkins said at the time.
In total, 8,228 votes were cast during the election.