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Iowa sees historic midterm results

Cindy+Axne+%5BLEFT%5D+and+Abby+Finkenauer+%5BRIGHT%5D+were+the+first+female+candidates+in+Iowa%27s+history+to+be+elected+to+the+US+House+of+Representatives.+
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Iowa sees historic midterm results

Cindy Axne [LEFT] and Abby Finkenauer [RIGHT] were the first female candidates in Iowa's history to be elected to the US House of Representatives.

Cindy Axne [LEFT] and Abby Finkenauer [RIGHT] were the first female candidates in Iowa's history to be elected to the US House of Representatives.

Photo courtesy of ABC News

Cindy Axne [LEFT] and Abby Finkenauer [RIGHT] were the first female candidates in Iowa's history to be elected to the US House of Representatives.

Photo courtesy of ABC News

Photo courtesy of ABC News

Cindy Axne [LEFT] and Abby Finkenauer [RIGHT] were the first female candidates in Iowa's history to be elected to the US House of Representatives.

Andrea Hernandez Delgado, Staff Writer

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On Nov. 6, millions of citizens across the U.S. went to vote in local and national elections. Iowa allowed early voting and mail-in ballots in the weeks leading up to the nationwide election day, which contributed to Winneshiek county’s 70.15 percent turnout rate. This is the highest turnout rate the county has ever seen, according to Decorah News.

In Decorah, citizens voted for their State Representative of District 55, which was a tight race between Republican incumbent Michael Bergan and Democrat opponent Kayla Koether, who are still waiting to have the final absentee ballots counted as of Tues., Nov. 13. Bergan leads the tally by only eight votes, and this count could still change the outcome. This district is often involved in close races that come down to absentee ballots and recounts.  Stephen Hadaway (‘21) believes student voting in a district that is historically close is important.

“I was shocked by the eight vote difference in the State House vote,” Hadaway said. “I’m disappointed that [Koether] is losing so far, and I doubt a recount will get her ahead, but it just shows you how voting can prevent wins from such a small disparity.”

Even if Koether wins this upcoming election, she will join the Democrats as the minority party in both houses of the Iowa Legislature. The new session, which is to start in January 2019, will have 54 Republicans and 46 Democrats in the state House. In the State Senate, it will have 32 Republicans and 18 Democrats according to the Des Moines Register.

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1 Comment

One Response to “Iowa sees historic midterm results”

  1. Carol Birkland on November 28th, 2018 8:38 pm

    I don’t know if CHIPS allows comments from non-students, but as an alum living in Decorah, I hope you will allow me some space to comment.

    The votes have now been recounted and by a margin of only 9 votes, District 55, of which Decorah is a part, will allow a man, who has followed the far right Republican Party agenda in lockstep, to return to the Iowa State House to continue as before.

    He voted to restrict abortions for women even before they know they are pregnant. He voted to continue Medicaid Privitization that has been a total disaster for both patients and providers. Our Winneshiek Co. Medical Center has had to write off tens of thousands of dollars because of what he has done. The list goes on and on.

    If only 10 more Luther students had managed to get off their butts to vote for Kayla Koether, all of this would not have happened. Kayla carried Winneshiek County but she needed 10 more votes from us to offset the deficit in Clayton County.

    So instead of sending a smart, extremely talented 29 year old woman who is committed to listening and responding to her constituents (and yes, Iowa resident Luther students ARE her constituents), we have her opponent for 2 more years of the same old same old.

    What happened to Kayla is a shame and any person who supports a progressive political agenda and failed to take the time to attend the Candidate Forum in Valders (where she clearly was the most prepared and articulate person on that stage – especially as it related to her opponent), must take responsibility for their inattention. And, if they failed to vote, the are responsible for their inaction.

    This is your future and it begins at the ballot box!

    Carol Birkland
    Class of ’67




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