Wednesday, June 4

No Election Insurrections, But Some Squeakers

Incumbent Democrat senator Tom Harkin may face unheralded Republican challenger Christopher Reed who won 35.29% of the vote which is likely to lead to a recount as Iowa law states the winner of a primary must have earned 35% of the vote to be a party's nominee.

In the 2nd District, Republican congressional candidate, Mariannette Miller-Meeks of Ottumwa squeaked by Cedar Rapids businessman Peter Teahen to face unopposed Democrat Dave Loebsack in November. Miller-Meeks won her race by under 100 votes.

In other districts, Dem Bruce Braley, who was unopposed in the 1st District, will face Republican challenger David Hartsuch in November. Leonard Boswell's strategy to avoid debating Ed Fallon served him well as he posted a 61% to 39% thumping in the 3rd District congressional primary where fewer Democrats in the 12-county district voted than in the 2006 gubernatorial primary. In the 4th Congressional District, Democrat Becky Greenwald won handily to face Tom Latham in November. In Iowa's 5th district, the matchup for the fall is between retired Presbyterian minister Rob Hubler of Council Bluffs, a Democrat, and Rep. Steve King.

With abysmal turnouts at the Johnson County primaries, incumbents held office--of course, when there is no opposition, the job is considerably easier, as Lonny Pulkrabek, Dave Jacoby, Mary Mascher, Vicki Lensing and others can attest.

Board of Supervisor candidates Rod Sullivan and Terrence Neuzil retained their offices as did Pat Harney. Terry Dahms was a good candidate, but wasn't able to define himself away from the pack.

Though the race was not close, challenger Mona Shaw is deserving of praise for her attempt to unseat long-time Johnson County auditor, Tom Slockett. Mona is a highly principled person and apparently 32% of Johnson County voters appreciated her candor.

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