Suit challenges eligibility of Alaska legislative candidate

JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — A lawsuit filed in state court is challenging the eligibility of an Alaska legislative candidate to hold the seat.

The lawsuit filed Monday alleges Democrat Jennifer “Jennie” Armstrong did not meet residency requirements on the date she filed to run for office. The complaint seeks an injunction barring state elections officials from certifying Armstrong as the winner of her Anchorage House race should she garner the most votes. Armstrong faces Republican Liz Vazquez in next week’s election.

The case, brought by Chris Duke, Randy Eledge, Steve Strait and Kathryn Werdahl, names the state Division of Elections and its director as defendants. The plaintiffs are described as “public interest litigants.”

Patty Sullivan, a spokesperson with the state Department of Law, said Tuesday morning that the department had not yet been served an official copy of the complaint and could not comment on the specific allegations.

But she said that Armstrong has been certified for the ballot based on information she provided in her declaration of candidacy and that the time for any challenge to her eligibility has expired.

“There is no process for the Division to find a candidate disqualified based on residency at this point in the process,” Sullivan said by email.

Armstrong did not immediately respond to a message seeking comment.

Becky Bohrer, The Associated Press