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Neighbors Growing Together | Sep 20, 2014

Siegel, Ernst win primary races

By DIANE VANCE | Jun 04, 2014
Photo by: ANDY HALLMAN State Representative Curt Hanson, left, and Judy Stevens, secretary of the Jefferson County Democratic Central Committee, pore over the results of Tuesday’s primary election. Hanson was on the ballot but had nothing to worry about as he was running for the Democratic nomination unopposed.

Jefferson County had nearly 12 percent of registered voters turn out for the primary elections, which had contests for county jobs, state government and the U.S. Senate and Congress.

Unlike a few districts in Iowa, all of the contests in Jefferson County have a declared winner. Those candidates now move on to the November general election where the voters will decide between Republicans, Democrats or third-party candidates for the jobs.

The county mirrors the rest of the state in picking Republican U.S. Senate candidate Joni Ernst out of a field of five GOP candidates. She received 414 votes, or 52.67 percent in Jefferson County. Ernst received 88,695 votes or 56 percent of Republican votes cast in Iowa.

Ernst will now compete against Democratic candidate Bruce Braley for Iowa’s second U.S. Senator to fill retiring Sen. Tom Harkin’s seat.

Braley was the only Democratic candidate for the U.S. Senate and received 331 votes or 98.81 percent in Jefferson County; there were four write-in votes. Statewide, Braley had 62,623 Democratic votes or 99.2 percent.

Iowa’s other senator is Republican Chuck Grassley, whose sixth term expires in 2016.

Iowa’s District 2 has a U.S. Congressional seat on the November ballot, between incumbent Democrat Rep. Dave Loebsack who was unopposed on the primary ticket and received 351 votes, or 99.15 percent of Jefferson County Democratic votes.

Loebsack will face Republican nominee Mariannette Miller-Meeks for the third time for this seat in November.

Miller-Meeks, from Ottumwa, received 564 votes or 72.31 percent of Jefferson County Republican votes in the primary, handily defeating two other Republican candidates.

In District 2, Miller-Meeks received 15,059 or 49 percent of the Republican votes, according to the Iowa Secretary of State’s website. Loebsack had 17,155 or 99.3 percent of the Democratic votes cast in District 2.

 

State politics

Incumbent Republican Gov. Terry Branstad easily beat Republican challenger Tom Hoefling in the primary. Branstad had 129,712 votes, or 83 percent of Republican votes in Iowa to Hoefling’s 26,284 votes, or 17 percent, according to the state’s data.

Jefferson County Republicans cast 612 votes, or 78.66 percent for Branstad compared to 164 votes, or 21.08 percent for Hoefling.

Branstad will face Democratic challenger Jack Hatch on the November ballot. Jefferson County cast 325 Democratic votes or 98.78 percent for Hatch; he had 60,404 Democratic votes or 99.3 percent statewide.

 

Local places

In local races, State Senate District 41 had two regional Democrats, Steve Siegel and Tom Rubel to challenge incumbent Republican Mark Chelgren. In Jefferson County, Siegel defeated Rubel with 273 votes or 76.69 percent to 83 or 23.31 percent of Democratic votes. Siegel kept his lead with 2,041 votes or 70 percent in the district to Rubel’s 883 votes or 30 percent.

Siegel will face Chelgren on the November ballot. Chelgren received 519 votes or 99.05 percent in Jefferson County and 2,387 Republican votes or 99.4 percent throughout the district.

Democratic incumbent Rep. Curt Hanson representing state District 82 received 331 Jefferson County Democratic votes or 99.1 percent, and 992 votes or 98.9 percent in the district. Republican challenger Jeff Shipley received 502 Republican votes or 99.6 percent in Jefferson County and 1,463 votes or 99.8 percent in the district.

Republican incumbent Rep. Dave Heaton of Iowa Legislature’s House District 84 received 87 votes or 56.49 percent in Jefferson County and his Republican challenger Ralph Holmstrom received 67 votes or 43.51 percent. Throughout District 84, Heaton had 1,306 or 69.6 percent of the Republican votes compared to Holmstrom’s 569 votes or 30.3 percent. No Democratic candidate filed for the primary in this race.

Iowa’s Secretary of Agriculture, incumbent Republican Bill Northey, received 658 votes or 98.95 percent in the county while Democratic challenger Sherrie Taha received 301 votes or 97.73 percent. Both parties also had seven write-ins.

Northey had 124,482 Republican votes or 99.7 percent in the state, while Taha was close in percentages at 99.5 percent but not votes, with 55,069. Both will be on the November ballot.

 

Jefferson County elections

At the county level, Republican incumbent Richard “Dick” Reed was unopposed and received 697 votes or 97.89 percent to retain his seat on the board of supervisors. Republicans had 15 write-in votes and Democrats cast 29 write-ins for this seat.

Other county offices unopposed in the primaries include:

• Republican incumbent Terri Kness, county treasurer, received 680 votes or 99.85 percent while Democrats cast 11 write-ins.

• Democratic incumbent Kelly Spees, county recorder, received 305 votes or 99.67 percent and Republicans had 22 write-ins.

• Republican incumbent Tim Dille, county attorney, received 649 votes or 98.78 percent. Republican voters cast eight write-ins and Democrats cast 15 write-ins for county attorney.

Republican Secretary of State candidate Paul Pate received 632 votes or 99.68 percent in Jefferson County and 119,009 or 99.5 percent in Iowa, while Democratic candidate Brad Anderson received 308 votes or 99.35 percent of votes in the county and 57,273 votes or 99.7 percent in the state.

State auditor votes in the county were 300 votes or 99.34 percent for Democratic challenger Jonathan Neiderbach and 609 votes or 100 percent for Republican incumbent Mary Mosiman. She received 115,521 votes or 99.7 percent of Iowa’s Republican votes to Neiderbach’s 55,395 votes or 99.6 percent of the Democratic votes in the state.

Democratic state treasurer incumbent Michael Fitzgerald had no challengers in the primaries, and received 317 Democratic votes or 99.69 percent in Jefferson County and 60,471 votes or 99.8 percent in the state. Jefferson County Republicans entered 21 write-ins.

Democratic state’s attorney general incumbent Tom Miller had no challengers in the primary and received 322 Democratic votes or 99.08 percent in the county and 61,382 votes or 99.6 percent in the state. Republican voters in Jefferson County cast 20 write-ins for state attorney general, while 3,408 Republicans in Iowa voted for a write-in.

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