Voices of Alaska: Alaska Republicans ready to vote for president

  • By Frank McQueary
  • Saturday, February 20, 2016 4:29pm
  • Opinion

Across the Kenai, volunteers are putting final touches on what will be an exciting day for Republicans: Super Tuesday.

They’ve been training for weeks on how to run a proper polling station and, with several great presidential candidates to choose from, these volunteers are expecting a big turnout on March 1.

The Alaska Republican Party joins 13 other states and territories that will have caucuses, primaries and polls that day. These are distinctly different political traditions for choosing the Republican nominee for president, but they all lead to a presidential nomination.

Alaska’s Presidential Preference Poll is not a caucus, where fewer people typically participate. With caucuses, people gather in meeting halls, engage in debate for and against candidates, and vote either by secret ballot or by placing themselves in a section of the room to indicate their support for a particular candidate.  

The Alaska Presidential Preference Poll is also not a primary, because it’s not run by the state. The PPP is the one chance that Republicans have to bind the votes of delegates to the Republican National Convention.

The Kenai Peninsula will have numerous voting locations for this occasion. The Alaska Republican Party web site, www.alaskagop.org, has a complete listing.

We expect thousands of Alaskans to take part by heading to a polling place in their legislative district. District party volunteers will tally the totals at the end of the process and the statewide count will be announced later that night or in the early hours the next day.

Although only Republicans take part in choosing the Republican nominee, it’s easy enough to change one’s registration, and most voting locations will have a qualified voter registrar available to assist. It only takes minutes to register as a Republican and we encourage Alaskans to do so.

More than 26 percent of Alaska’s 514,162 registered voters are already registered Republicans. Although our state’s independent streak does lean right and typically votes right, more than half of Alaska voters don’t officially affiliate with any party at all. We’d be happy to help them change that because we value their participation in choosing the next president.

With our Republican majority in the State House and Senate, and our Republican national delegation, Alaska is awarded as many delegates to the Republican National Convention as a much more populous state, such as Oregon.

Twenty-eight Alaska delegates and 25 alternates will head to Cleveland in July to take part in the naming of the Republican nominee. Their votes on the floor of the convention will be bound, through the third round of voting, by decisions made by us — the voters who participate on March 1.

Candidates must receive at least 13 percent of the total statewide Presidential Preference Poll vote to receive any delegates to the national convention, which is why we are now seeing effort made by the leading candidates to reach Alaska Republicans and urge them to get to the poll on March 1.

I want to thank the volunteer army on the Kenai that is working hard to ensure that the Presidential Preference Poll is a success.

You also can help make it a historic success, by showing up to your district polling place on March 1, from 3-8 p.m., with your identification, such as your driver’s license or voter ID card.

Add your voice to this great process that leads to a peaceful transfer of power every four years.


Frank McQueary is the vice chairman of the Alaska Republican Party and is the director of the 2016 Presidential Preference Poll.

More in Opinion

No to 67%

Recently, the Alaska State Officers Compensation Commission voted to raise the pay… Continue reading

This image available under the Creative Commons license shows the outline of the state of Alaska filled with the pattern of the state flag.
Opinion: Old models of development are not sustainable for Alaska

Sustainability means investing in keeping Alaska as healthy as possible.

Gov. Mike Dunleavy unveils proposals to offer public school teachers annual retention bonuses and enact policies restricting discussion of sex and gender in education during a news conference in Anchorage. (Screenshot)
Opinion: As a father and a grandfather, I believe the governor’s proposed laws are anti-family

Now, the discrimination sword is pointing to our gay and transgender friends and families.

Kenai Peninsula Education Association President Nathan Erfurth works in his office on Thursday, Oct. 28, 2021, in Soldotna, Alaska. (Ashlyn O’Hara/Peninsula Clarion)
Voices of the Peninsula: Now is the time to invest in Kenai Peninsula students

Parents, educators and community members addressed the potential budget cuts with a clear message.

Gov. Mike Dunleavy holds a press conference at the Capitol on Tuesday, April 9, 2019. (Juneau Empire file photo)
Opinion: An accurate portrayal of parental rights isn’t controversial

Affirming and defining parental rights is a matter of respect for the relationship between parent and child

Opinion: When the state values bigotry over the lives of queer kids

It has been a long, difficult week for queer and trans Alaskans like me.

Unsplash / Louis Velazquez
Opinion: Fish, family and freedom… from Big Oil

“Ultimate investment in the status quo” is not what I voted for.

Dr. Sarah Spencer. (Photo by Maureen Todd and courtesy of Dr. Sarah Spencer)
Voices of the Peninsula: Let’s bring opioid addiction treatment to the Alaskans who need it most

This incredibly effective and safe medication has the potential to dramatically increase access to treatment

An orphaned moose calf reared by the author is seen in 1970. (Stephen F. Stringham/courtesy photo)
Voices of the Peninsula: Maximizing moose productivity on the Kenai Peninsula

Maximum isn’t necessarily optimum, as cattle ranchers learned long ago.

(Ben Hohenstatt / Juneau Empire File)
Opinion: The time has come to stop Eastman’s willful and wanton damage

God in the Bible makes it clear that we are to care for the vulnerable among us.

Caribou graze on the greening tundra of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge in northeast Alaska in June, 2001. (Michael Penn / Juneau Empire File)
Opinion: AIDEA’s $20 million-and-growing investment looks like a bad bet

Not producing in ANWR could probably generate a lot of money for Alaska.

A fisher holds a reel on the Kenai River near Soldotna on June 30, 2021. (Photo by Ashlyn O’Hara/Peninsula Clarion)
Voices of the Peninsula: King salmon closures long overdue

Returns have progressively gone downhill since the early run was closed in June 2012