Mark Begich, Alaska's Democratic gubernatorial candidate, says he will not withdraw from the race despite pressure for him to bow out.
What are the details?
Begich, a former U.S. senator, held a news conference Tuesday to announce that he will not bow out of the race.
"Alaska has never given up on me, and I won't give up on Alaska," Begich said. "For those who are wondering, I'm staying in this race for governor."
Begich's decision to remain in the race comes after some Democrats reportedly were pushing for him to withdraw because they believed he could split the vote with incumbent Gov. Bill Walker (I) and hand the win over to the Republican nominee, former state Sen. Mike Dunleavy.
Tuesday was the state deadline for candidates to withdraw from the general election ballot.
"It's a three-way race, so get used to it," Begich, who was unopposed in clinching the Democratic nomination in August, said in his remarks.
"We are going to fight for a future where it isn't unreasonable to assume your car will be waiting in your driveway when you head out to work in the morning," Begich continued.
"And we are going to fight for the future of the 5-year-old I met in Bethel, who doesn’t have her PFD slashed because she’s expected to shoulder the same burden of our financial crisis as a CEO of a large corporation," he added.
— Beth Verge (@ktuubeth) September 4, 2018
Did the other challengers issue statements in response to Begich?
Both the Walker and Dunleavy camps issued statements Tuesday, responding to Begich's announcement that he would not be pulling out of the race.
Walker said, "Regardless of how many candidates are in this race, this election will come down to the decisions made to protect the Permanent Fund and deliver a Fiscal Plan. Party politicians would like to run away from those decisions and retreat back to uncertainty and fiscal crisis. Our challenge in the next two months is to convince Alaskans that those decisions have put Alaska in control of our own future."
The Dunleavy campaign said, in part, "The two candidates for big government — Bill Walker and Mark Begich — failed to pull off another scheme to disenfranchise Alaskan voters. Now the choice could not be more clear: Alaskans can vote either for the failed [experiment] of Walker/Mallott, career politician Mark Begich, or the bold new leadership of Mike Dunleavy, who has pledged to restore the PFD, take real steps to fight crime, and grow the economy."
Begich will face Walker and Dunleavy in the Nov. 6 general election. You can read more about the candidates’ backgrounds here.