Photos: A winner is declared, finally, in Alaska’s special election for U.S. House

Democrat Mary Peltola held on to her lead in ranked vote tabulation to defeat former Gov. Sarah Palin and businessman Nick Begich III, both Republicans.

On Wednesday, Mary Peltola was named the winner of Alaska’s special U.S. House race, weeks after Alaskans cast their votes in the Aug. 16 election. The Democrat from Bethel won the most first-choice votes, then held her lead over Republican former Gov. Sarah Palin in the next round of ranked vote tabulation after third-place GOP candidate Nick Begich III was eliminated.

Palin, Peltola and Begich were among the candidates who participated in a U.S. House forum hosted by the Alaska Oil and Gas Association on Wednesday at the Dena’ina Civic and Convention Center in Anchorage. When it ended, both Peltola and Palin went to their campaign offices to watch as results were announced.

Here’s a look at how the day unfolded as election results were released.

[Video: What Mary Peltola had to say after results showed she won Alaska’s U.S. House election]