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Election Results!

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What an election night!  Iowans voted in record numbers - 60% of all registered voters turned out.  That's 1.3 million voters (a usual mid-term election turnout is more like 1 million).  That's good news for our democracy!  Your vote is your voice - so we hope that you got a chance to use it!

Here’s a few quick notes about the election.  At the federal level, Iowa went from being represented by three Republicans and one Democrat, to being represented by three Democrats and one Republican.  Iowa elected its first women to Congress - Cindy Axne defeated David Young, and Abby Finkenauer defeated Rob Blum.  Finkenauer would have been the youngest woman ever elected to Congress, but she was beat out by New Yorker Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, who was also elected to Congress on Tuesday.  Both are 29 years old (only 10 months apart).

At the state level, Republicans will continue to control of all three decision-making bodies, winning the Governorship, gaining seats in the Iowa Senate, and holding the Iowa House (although with a smaller majority).

Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds became the first female Governor elected in Iowa, by beating Fred Hubbell, 50-47%. In other statewide races, Democrat Rob Sand defeated Republican Mary Mosiman in the State Auditor’s race, 51-47%.  All other statewide incumbents won, including Republican Secretary of State Paul Pate, Democrat Attorney General Tom Miller, Democrat State Treasurer Mike Fitzgerald, and Republican Secretary of Agriculture Mike Naig.  Of note, one of Rob Sand's biggest issues on the campaign trail was Medicaid managed care.  He promised to begin a process to audit the MCOs to make sure Iowa taxpayers are getting what they are paying for. 

In the Iowa Senate, Republicans gained three seats overall and will enter January with a 32-18 majority.  They did it by losing one seat (Bertrand’s Sioux City seat to Jackie Smith), but gaining four seats (David Johnson’s independent seat in NW Iowa to Zach Whiting, Chaz Allen’s seat in East Polk and Jasper counties to Zach Nunn, Tod Bowman’s seat in NE Iowa to Carrie Koelker and Rita Hart’s seat in East Iowa to Chris Cournoyer).   There are many other new faces on the list, but none of them resulted in a new party in control of the seat.   

In the Iowa House, Republicans lost five seats overall and will enter January with a 54-46 majority.  They did it by gaining two seats (Helen Miller’s Fort Dodge seat to Ann Meyer and Phil Miller’s Fairfield seat to Jeff Shipley), and by losing seven (Kevin Koester’s Ankeny seat to Heather Matson, Jake Highfill’s Johnston/Grimes seat to Karin Derry, Peter Cownie’s West Des Moines seat to Kristin Sunde, Chris Hagenow’s former seat to Jennifer Konfrst,  Rob Taylor’s West Des Moines/Waukee seat to Kenan Judge, Walt Rogers’ Cedar Falls seat to Dave Williams, and Ken Rizer’s Cedar Rapids seat to Molly Donahue).  As with the Senate, there are many other new faces on the list, but none of them resulted in a new party in control of the seat.

Some more fun facts:

  • Women made gains, but they still are under-represented in the Legislature.  Only 1/3 of the Iowa House seats are held by women, and only 1/5 of Iowa Senators are women.  Of note, more than half of the 46 Democratic seats in the Iowa House are women!
  • 1 in 5 legislators is new this year.  There are 22 new Representatives and 9 new Senators (although two are not really new - they came over from the House).
  • In 2018, there were no Senators named Zach.  In 2019, there will be three Senators named Zach (Zach Whiting, Zach Wahls, and Zach Nunn).  Zach is now tied as the most popular name in the Iowa Senate (with Mark - Mark Costello, Mark Segebart, Mark Lofgren).  Not that this has any importance, but there are two Tims (Kapucian, Kraayenbrink), two Jims (Lykam, Carlin), and two Toms (Greene, Shipley).

You can see election results on the Secretary of State's website here.  As time rolls forward, and we get the really important information about committee assignments, etc., we’ll share that information here.  In the meantime, reach out to your newly elected legislators, and congratulate them on their win!  Ask them to put you on their email or newsletter lists!