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Donald Trump encouraged Sarah Palin to run for Congress, report says

Donald Trump encouraged Sarah Palin to run for Congress, report says
Large field of candidates vying to replace late US Representative Don Young, who died earlier this year

Donald Trump encouraged Sarah Palin to return to politics and run for Congress, according to a report.

John McCain’s 2008 presidential running-mate spoke with the one-term president before filing paperwork to run for Alaska’s vacant House seat, two sources told Fox News.

The state’s former governor announced on Friday that she is aiming to fill the “big shoes” of late US Representative Don Young, who died earlier this year after serving for 49 years.

Ms Palin joins a field of 40 candidates seeking to fill the state’s only House seat.

“Public service is a calling, and I would be honored to represent the men and women of Alaska in Congress, just as Rep. Young did for 49 years,” Ms Palin said in a statement.

“I realise that I have very big shoes to fill, and I plan to honor Rep. Young’s legacy by offering myself up in the name of service to the state he loved and fought for, because I share that passion for Alaska and the United States of America.”

Friday was the final day that Ms Palin could have entered the race ahead of the 11 June special primary.

The results of the primary will be announced on 26 June, with the top four candidates taking part in a special election on 16 August where the winner will be chosen by ranked-choice voting.

Alaska’s Division of Elections is aiming to certify the special election on 2 September, with the winner serving the rest of Young’s term, which ends in January 2023.

Ms Palin lost a defamation lawsuit against the New York Times in February, though she is seeking a new trial.

Other candidates in the race include Republican state Senator Josh Revak, Democratic state Representative Adam Wool, and independent Al Gross.

A man who legally changed his name to Santa Claus and serves on the North Pole City Council has also filed paperwork to run in the special primary.