It was, at one point, a close state Senate race -- Republican Ron Gillham of Soldotna was ahead on primary election night in August by 12 votes.

But he ultimately lost by more than 70 votes, after the final tally, to incumbent Peter Micciche.

Micciche is the sitting Senate Majority Leader, vice president of the Senate Finance Committee and a co-sponsor of criminal justice overhaul measure Senate Bill 91.

Gillham is a political newcomer, running on a platform to repeal SB 91.

While Micciche's name will be printed on the general election ballot in November, as the GOP's nominee for Senate District O, Gillham says he will continue to campaign for the seat, as a write-in candidate.

"I had lots of people, hundreds of people, get in touch with me, saying, 'Do a write-in, Do a write-in,'" Gillham said. "So, I listened to the people and said, 'OK;' I went ahead and filed the paperwork. I figured if they're going to write my name in, I might as well at least put my hat in the ring instead of having them waste a vote."

Gillham says he and Micciche have spoken briefly since the primary via a mutual acquaintance.

Attempts to reach Micciche for comment Saturday were unsuccessful.

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