Anchorage Voters May Have Rejected An LGBT Anti-Discrimination Ordinance In Chaotic Election

With 90 percent of precincts reporting, it appears that 58 percent of Anchorage voters rejected Proposition Five a measure that would have ensured protections for LGBT people.

According to the Anchorage Daily News, the “equal rights ordinance that was far and away the most controversial and emotional component of this spring’s election.”

The Daily News writes that it was a chaotic election, and that neither side of the Prop 5 debate has conceded defeat:

An unexpectedly high turnout, with some polling places running out of ballots, resulted in a large number of votes that might be on “questioned” ballots, which have to be counted by hand. The final results may be days or longer away, said municipal clerk Barbara Gruenstein.

Reports began circulating late in the day Tuesday that some precincts were running out of ballots because of heavy turnout. By 7 p.m.—an hour before polls were to close—lines were long at many polling places and extra ballots were being rushed to precincts that had run out.

The New York Times says it was strange for so much national attention be paid to a measure in a small city with a population of just 300,000:

The vote followed an unusually loud and expensive campaign for a city ballot measure in Anchorage. The organizers of Proposition 5, a group called One Anchorage, included prominent politicians from both sides of the aisle (Alaska’s United States senators, Lisa Murkowski, a Republican, and Mark Begich, a Democrat, both said they supported it) and the group outspent the opposition more than 4 to 1.

One Anchorage, which had raised about $340,000 as of last week, received some of its support from outside the state, including a $25,000 donation from Tim Gill, a Colorado billionaire who has given generously to gay causes. Opposition was led by conservative religious leaders in Alaska, including within the Catholic Church, and was financed largely by one source, the Anchorage Baptist Temple and its leader, the Rev. Jerry Prevo.

Queerty is holding out hope that the Yes on Prop 5 side comes out with the extra votes they need in the recount. In a small election such as this, it’s not inconceivable. Plus, a lot of the people who voted no on the measure were told that they could register on the same day, which is incorrect (you need to register 30 days prior), so many of those votes could get invalidated.

Photo via Frank Kovalchek

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  • Lumi Bast (@nugoyxi)

    Human rights should not be voted on by the public, they should be guaranteed.

  • JO

    They’re just a city of backward morons. No one in their right mind would live there anyway.

  • Bailey

    Go Palin Jihadists!

  • Danny

    At least a lot was learned in either case, like who the top human rights violators are in the region, and knowing is half the battle (for instance, people know to stop donating the Catholic Church in Alaska).

  • Heather Hamilton


    I came to Anchorage, AK five years ago seeking an education, and have stayed for the extraordinary community that has rallied behind and supported Prop. 5.

    We may have some backwards zealots with loud voices up here, but we as a whole are not out of our minds.

    We very much have them, in fact, and are doing our damnedest to use them to better a corner of these United States often ignored in anything not regarding Sarah Palin. Perhaps since you seem to think you’re better than those of us living up here, you might have some insight into how we can make this a more tolerant place for future generations?

  • JO

    @ Heather Hamilton,

    Heather, let me tell you I don’t think I’m better than anyone else. I’m a flawed like everyone else.

    The backwards morons I was referring to were the 58 percent of the population of your city who think that it’s okay to discriminate against LGBT people.

  • kahn

    Hello, I’m kahn, a gay kid who lives in Anchorage, Ak. Most Alaskan Gays didn’t support this prop 5 and niether do I. Don’t get me wrong i wouldn’t have minded if it had passed, however most of us don’t care. People in the lower 48, fail to realize that alaska is very independent and we don’t care about these sort of things. We would rather live and let live, as the saying goes. No one inpunes my rights, No one bashes me, but a cruel word every now and then is expected no matter where you go. The point is, compared to the other 14 states i’ve visited, alaska is by far the most tolerant and friendly.
    Now that i think about it, the only truely judgmental people i’ve met, were in L.A. and they were gay… think on this, might do you some good.

  • Jim Minnery

    Please excuse kahn… I mean, me. It wasn’t my fault , but a staffer at the Municipal Clerk’s office caused my inner child to escape, but you can only believe half of what he says. As an adult, I’ve reached even higher levels of achievement.

Comments are closed.