An Ottumwa physician won a narrow victory in the second congressional district contest over two other Republicans who wanted to face first-term Congressman Dave Loebsack this fall.
Dr. Marianette Miller-Meeks eeked out a victory over Peter Teahan of Cedar Rapids by just 109 votes. "I have tremendous appreciation and humility for the numbers of people that we inspired to help us with this campaign," Miller-Meeks says, "and people who contributed funds and hard earned month be it a dollar or $2300."
Miller-Meeks says she will focus on a variety of issues in which she believes Loebsack is vulnerable. "Health care, energy, GI Bill, veterans benefits, tax reform…The current tax code benefits lobbyists and special interests," Miller-Meeks says. "…There will be sharp differences between us on those issues."
Miller-Meeks won 43.6 percent of the vote.
The chairwoman of Dallas County Democrats will be her party’s nominee to face Republican Congressman Tom Latham of Ames in the fall. Becky Greenwald of Perry easily defeated three other candidates in Tuesday’s fourth congressional district primary.
Greenwald says the economy is the main issue this fall. "Ever since Tom Latham and George Bush have been working together these past seven-and-a-half years we’ve seen skyrocketing fuel costs and food costs and it’s pretty tough for our friends and neighbors to get by with that," she says.
Greenwald cites Democratic victories this year in other congressional districts around the country as evidence there’s a growing tide that could toss Latham out of office. "We’ve seen recently in rural districts in Illinois and Mississippi and Louisiana Democrats take on the congressional seats in traditionally strong Republican areas," she says, "and we now have more registered Democrats in the fourth district that we haven’t had before."
Greenwald has worked for Pioneer for the past 12 years and she worked for Garst Seeds before that. Her opponent’s family runs a competitor known as Latham Seeds.
Greenwald won just over 50 percent of the votes cast in Tuesday’s primary.