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Congresswoman Palin? Former Alaska governor says she would run for Congress ‘in a heartbeat’ if asked to run for open seat

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Alex Wong/Getty Images

Sarah Palin, the former Alaska governor and 2008 vice presidential candidate, could be headed to Congress.

What is the background?

Don Young, Alaska’s at-large congressman, passed away Friday at age 88.

Young, a Republican, was the longest-serving member of Congress. He was elected 25 times and served nearly 50 years in Congress. Young was running for re-election at the time of his passing.

"It’s with heavy hearts and deep sadness that we announce Congressman Don Young, the Dean of the House and revered champion for Alaska, passed away today while traveling home to Alaska to be with the state and people that he loved," Young’s office said in a statement. "His beloved wife Anne was by his side."

What did Palin say?

Speaking with Newsmax TV host Eric Bolling, Palin revealed she would join Congress "in a heartbeat" if asked to replace Young.

"Oh my goodness, think of those huge shoes that are to be filled when we consider Don Young’s longevity and his passion, his love, his fighting spirit for our wonderful state of Alaska, and for the nation as a whole," Palin said.

"If I were asked to serve in the House and to take his place, I would be humbled and honored and I would— yeah, in a heartbeat I would," she added. "We’ll see how this process is gonna go, in terms of filling that seat, but it would be an honor."

"It would be an honor": Sarah Palin responds to calls urging her to replace a late Alaskan Rep. youtu.be

When Bolling asked if Palin truly is "up for that challenge" of being in Congress, Palin compared the feat to the one Donald Trump took when he ran for president.

"Well you know, when you have nothing to lose — kind of like President Trump. In one sense, you have everything to lose, as Trump gave up so much," Palin began.

"But on the other hand, you know, when the media has already clobbered you, as bad as you can get clobbered, and the haters, you’re not going to change their mind," she continued. "But you have faith that there are enough Americans who understand where you’re coming from, your love for the country, your servant’s heart, um yeah, I think there are enough Americans who understand what we need and when I have nothing to lose as is the case today, I think it would be good for my family even. Yeah, I'd serve."

Anything else?

Numerous Alaskan Republicans will battle for Young’s seat in a special election that will be held sometime this summer — most likely on Aug. 16 — and will test Alaska’s new ranked-choice voting system.
“There are a lot of people who worked for [Young] who thought they should inherit his seat in some fashion,” a Republican operative told the Washington Examiner. “Now that he’s passed away, a lot of these people would be free to throw their hats in the ring.”
So far, Nick Begich is the only Republican who has declared he will run in the special election. Democrat Christopher Constant, a member of the Anchorage Assembly, has also said he will run.
Alaska Gov. Mike Dunleavy (R) has said he will not run.
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