A group of Sioux County Republicans unhappy with the nomination of John Kooiker as the GOP candidate in tomorrow’s Iowa House District 4 special election stepped efforts to win a write-in campaign for the seat formerly held by conservative stalwart Dwayne Alons.
The group, which alternately calls itself Concerned Republicans from Hull and Concerned Republicans from Rock Valley, launched its write-in campaign a few days after the GOP nominating convention. It began running radio ads last week.
The new ads noted that Sioux County supervisor Dennis Wright had publicly stated he would serve, if elected. In a previous interview with The Statesman, Wright indicated his own displeasure with Kooiker’s nomination, calling him “the worst” of the six candidates at the convention.
Kooiker’s campaign has received the support of several notable northwest Iowa Republicans, including Alons’ widow, Clarice, U.S. Rep. Steve King, and Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Bill Northey. But the shortened campaign of a special election levels the playing field for a write-in campaign.
Weather may also play a factor. Sioux County received about 6 inches of snow today and strong winds tomorrow will create dangerous blowing and drifting conditions, and wind chills of minus-30 F throughout the day.
A split vote is unlikely to help the Democratic candidate, John Buntsma. Republicans hold a 9-to-1 advantage in active registered voters over Democrats, and a 3-to-1 advantage over active no-party registrants.
Polls are open from 7 am to 9 pm tomorrow. Check in at www.theiowastatesman.com tomorrow night for results.
Editor’s Note: This article was amended to reflect new information regarding the group involved in the write-in campaign and the radio ads it has been funding.