Just 18 months after conservative voters turned out in larger than typical numbers to oust three hard-left Palmer City Council members in April of 2022, progressives have now managed to oust one conservative in last week’s Oct. 3 city election.
Three people ran for two city council seats, with just 9.5% (477) of registered voters (4994) bothering to cast a ballot.
Incumbent conservative Richard Best won reelection with 224 votes, but fellow conservative Thomas Ojala was replaced by the pro-abortion, socially liberal Jim Cooper. Cooper secured 279 votes, while Ojala garnered just 178 votes.
While the city council still enjoys a conservative majority, left-leaning voters now have a prominent voice on the city’s governing body.
With less than 10% of voters weighing in, Palmer also approved $10 million for the construction of a new public library, and passed a $300,000 property tax exemption for seniors and disabled veterans.
Mat-Su residents will have another chance to cast ballots in two key school board and three borough assembly races during the upcoming Nov. 7 borough elections. Early voting starts Oct. 23.