Voters of Mitchell County braved the snow and the sub zero temperatures this Tuesday for the 2018 Iowa caucuses, arriving this year in tandem with a massive winter storm system dumping up to seven inches of snow in many areas of the state just hours before the evening’s caucuses convened.
The caucuses were held for the Republicans at the Milt Owen Nature Center in Osage and at South Square Community Center in St. Ansgar, with the Democrats meeting at the Osage Middle School.
This year, not being a year of a presidential election, saw the caucuses focused on local and statewide races in November, when all of Iowa’s executive officers will be up for election as well as all four of Iowa’s seats in the United States House of Representatives, half the seats in the Iowa Senate, and all 100 seats in the Iowa House.
In Iowa House District 51, encompassing Worth, Mitchell, Howard, and part of Winneshiek Counties, Republican incumbent Jane Bloomingdale is facing Democratic challenger Tom Knutson of Northwood, a healthcare consultant and small business owner. The party primary is June 5 and the general election is Nov 6.
Iowa’s incumbent governor Kim Reynolds is facing a primary challenge from Cedar Rapids Mayor Ron Corbett and Steven Ray, Mayor pro-tem of Boone. The Democratic field for governor is far more crowded, currently with seven contenders: State Senator Nate Boulton, labor activist Cathy Glasson, businessman Fred Hubbell, former IDP chair Andy McGuire, attorney Jon Neiderbach, former Vilsack staffer John Norris, and former Iowa City Mayor Ross Wilburn.
There will a special election for the District 3 Mitchell County Board of Supervisors seat, tentatively to be held in early April. County Auditor Lowell Tesch informed the EJ that a petition for a special of election was filed with his office with close to 230 signatures of those in support of a special election for the seat currently held by Amanda Adams of Stacyville, who was interim-appointed by the Board of Supervisors to serve out the 11 month term of Shannon Paulus, who resigned upon her appointment as Mitchell County Treasurer earlier this year. Adams, a Republican, indicated that she will run for the seat in her own right in the special election. Steve Smolik of Little Cedar, who filed the petition, also indicated to the EJ that he would file to run as a Republican once the date of the special election is set.
County party conventions will convene to nominate their respective candidates, (dates have been scheduled tentatively as Feb 22 for the Democrats and March 10 for Republicans, but as of press time this is not yet confirmed) and other candidates must submit nominating petitions with the Auditor’s office to run as an independent.
Stay tuned to the EJ for more on this developing story! Subscribe to all the local news that matters by clicking here!