Heaton, Miller-Meeks, Ernst receive nods from voters
By BROOKS TAYLOR
Mt. Pleasant News
Veteran State Rep. Dave Heaton, R-Mt. Pleasant, took the first step to gaining his 11th term in the Iowa Legislature.
Heaton, facing primary competition for the first time in his career, easily defeated Ralph Holmstrom of Mt. Pleasant, 1,306-569, or 70-30 percent, for the Republican nomination for the 84th District House seat. The district includes all of Henry County and portions of Lee, Washington and Jefferson counties.
In Henry County, Heaton won by 69-31 percent margin.
Although the circumstances may have been different (primary instead of general election), Heaton said his approach was similar.
“I approached the election in the same positive manner (as a general election), the 20-year state representative said. “I have never run a negative campaign, and I was very disturbed by the negative campaigning in the (U.S.) Senate race. I don’t know how anyone can run a negative campaign against someone in their own party.
“This, being a primary, was a different type of election in that your party decides its candidate (for the general election),” Heaton continued. “I am very appreciative of the support I received from my party. I’m a local representative and represent 30,000 people in Henry, Washington, Lee and Jefferson counties. It is a local race and that is where you focus. I am ready to continue my work on mental health, particularly children’s mental health.”
The Heaton-Holmstrom race was the lone local contested race.
In the U.S. Senate, gubernatorial and Second District House GOP primaries, county voters went along with the flow of the remainder of the state and congressional district.
Joni Ernst of Red Oak received 680 votes in the GOP U.S. Senate primary. Mark Jacobs was next at 288, Matt Whitaker had 139, Sam Clovis 137 and Scott Schaben 16.
Gov. Terry Branstad, running for yet another term, easily bested Tom Hoefling in the Republican primary, 988-296.
Finally, Dr. Mariannette Miller-Meeks, an Ottumwa opthamologist and former director of the Iowa Department of Public Health, gained the GOP nod for the third time for a congressional seat. Miller-Meeks tallied 724 votes in a three-way race with State. Rep. Mark Lofgren (439) and Matthew Waldren (82).
County Democrats did not have any state or locally contested races.
However, they were able to help Bruce Braley, U.S. Senate, 160 votes, Congressman Dave Loebsack, 163 votes, and Jack Hatch, governor, 158 votes, to the November ballot.
County officials, all running unopposed on the GOP ballot, included Supervisor Marc Lindeen, Treasurer Ana Lair, Recorder Shirley Wandling and Attorney Daren Stater.
Democrat Mary Hoyer netted 158 votes and will oppose Lindeen in November for a supervisor seat. Lair, Wandling and Stater do not have announced opposition in the general election.
The general election will be Tuesday, Nov. 4.