Fairfield Ledger
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Mt. Pleasant News   Wash Journal
Neighbors Growing Together | Dec 17, 2017

Parties elect candidates for special election

By Nicole Major, Ledger staff writer | Jul 05, 2017

Political parties are gearing up for a hopeful win during a special election slated for Aug. 8 to replace the late Rep. Curt Hanson, who died recently.

Hanson served as the representative for Iowa House District No. 82, which is comprised of Davis, Van Buren and portions of Jefferson County.

Gov. Kim Reynolds signed a proclamation on June 21 to set a date for a special election for District 82.

Fairfield veterinarian and school board President Phil Miller was nominated Friday during a special Democratic nominating convention, while Republicans selected Moulton-Udell School Board President Travis Harris of Davis County as thier candidate to run for the seat.

The Iowa Libertarian Party plans to cast its hat into the ring, and will host a special convention from 6-8 p.m. today at the Fairfield Public Library,

“Fairfield is very eclectic. You’ve got all sorts of different people represented. I live south of Fairfield, and I’m intending to run tonight for the special election,” said Joshua Miller, who ran for a seat on the State House District 78 last year.

“I had no intentions of political involvment in 2017, it was really a matter of chance because I had just moved into the area in April. However, after we heard the unfortunate news about Rep. Curt Hanson, I was approached by my party’s executive direactor to run,” he said.

Miller, who has been a Libertarian since 2012, is a para-transit driver for Washington County Minibus.

“I had a lot of fun last year with my first campaign. I actually pulled in over 21 percent in the General Election, That was an $80 self-funded campaign,” he said. “I’m really kind of the average guy. I seek to increase representation. I took no money at all last year just to prove I couldn’t be bought. I think that message really resonated.”

“There would be three of them running, but there might be room for a write-in,” said Jefferson County Democratic Party chair Susie Drish.

Drish said local Democrat Johnathan Freeman planned to run against Miller, but decided instead to endorse him.

Drish called Miller “Curtesk or Curt-like,” and said that other had voters mentioned that quality about him.

“I want to thank the delegates from Jefferson, Van Buren and Davis counties for their support,” Phil Miller said. “I look forward to taking my sessage of creating good paying jobs with benefits to the people of Southeast Iowa. I’ll listen and work hard to earn the trust and support of tpeopl in our community. It’s time politicians start putting hard-working Iowans first again.”

Phil Miller said as a member of the school board that he knew first-hand how decisions in Des Moines could impact the community.

“When politicians shortchange public schools year after year, schools are forced to close, and fewer opportunities are available for our students. I’ll work to make public schools a top priortiy in the Iowa Legislature again,” he said.

Harris was nominated by Republicans of Davis, Wapello and Van Buren counties. In addition to serving as the school board president, he is also a director of Southern Iowa Electric Cooperative, Inc.

He has been a member of Soutehrn Iowa Electric Coorperative since 1996. Since 1999, he has been a representative with Farm Financial Strategies, Inc. The Ledger was unable to reach Harris by press time.

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