Friday, August 17, 2012

District of the Day 3: The Uncontested Races

Four Iowa Senate districts and 31 House seats will have only one major party candidate on the ballot.

Senate Republicans have candidates in all 26 races. Though they had a bit of trouble in District 34 when their candidate literally seceded, and no one stepped up to run but her campaign chair.

Three Republican Senators, all in heavily GOP districts, get a free pass from the Democrats: Randy Feenstra in District 2, Joni Ernst in District 12, and Brad Zaun in District 20. In addition, newcomer Jake Chapman will go to the Senate from District 10 with no general election opponent, though he did win a contested primary.

House Democrats fielded 81 candidates*, leaving 17 House Republicans and two newcomers alone. The list in order of most to least Republican:

District 4 Dwayne Alons (#1 most Republican)
District 1 Jeff Smith (#2)
District 3 Dan Huseman (#3)
District 23: Open seat, Mark Costello won contested GOP primary (#4)
District 22 Greg Forristall, won contested primary (#5)
District 24 Cecil Dolecheck, won contested primary (#6)
District 5 Chuck Soderberg  (#8)
District 50 Pat Grassley, won VERY contested primary (#9)
District 54 Linda Upmeyer (#11)
District 8 Henry Rayhons, won contested primary (#12)
This Is Where Your District Went: John Landon won convention, has independent opponent (#15)
District 10 Tom Shaw (#17)
District 11 Gary Worthan (#19)
District 84 Dave Heaton (#20)
District 78 Jarad Klein, won contested primary (#21)
District 17 Matt Windschitl (#24)
District 6 Ron Jorgensen, won contested primary (#26)
District 96 Lee Hein (#37)
District 27 Joel Fry  in the 41st most Republican seat, or the 60th most Democratic. That's the best seat Team Donkey is leaving alone. However, Fry has an independent opponent, Ruth Smith, who ran for state Senate twice as a Democrat.

* UPDATE August 23: There are two races where Democrats have dropped out but remain on the ballot: House 18, where Kasey Friedrichsen ended her run against GOP incumbent Jason Schultz, and House 42, where Mike McRae dropped his challenge to Republican Rep. Peter Cownie.

** UPDATE again October 29: At some point  Chris Wilson dropped out in House 79.

House Republicans have 88 candidates, leaving 11 House Democrats and one newcomer with no GOP opposition.

District 85 Vicki Lensing (number one most Democratic district)    
District 62 Deborah Berry, has independent opponent (#2)
District 86 Mary Mascher (#3)   
District 100 Chuck Isenhart (#7)    
District 74 Dave Jacoby (#13)
District 65 Tyler Olson (#17)    
District 69 Kirsten Running-Marquardt (#19)
District 98 Mary Wolfe, has independent opponent (#21)
District 31 Rick Olson (#22)
District 53 Sharon Steckman (#23)
District 57: Open seat where Republican Steve Lukan retired. Democrat Nancy Dunkel will go to the House with no opponent in the primary or general election. (#30 most Democratic seat)
District 52 Brian Quirk, in the number 32 most Democratic seat, the best seat the Republicans are letting go. Quirk drew a last-minute independent opponent who lost a 2010 Republican primary.

While we're ranking the seats, here's some people with tough races by the numbers:
  • Republican Rep. Brian Moore, House 58 (#18 most Democratic, 83rd most Republican) . The most Democratic seat held by a Republican.
  • Democrat Rep. Roger Thomas, House 55 (#73 most Democratic, 24th most Republican). Most Republican seat held by a Democrat  .
  • Democrat Chris Wilson, challenging Republican Rep. Guy Vander Linden in House 79, the 7th most Republican seat.
  • Republican Jim Steffen, challenging Democrat Rep. Jerry Kearns in House 83, the fourth most Democratic seat.

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