Republicans held the seat representing Iowa House District 6 that was left vacant after former State Representative, now State Senator Jim Carlin (R-Sioux City) won the special election in Iowa Senate District 3 on December 12.
The Republican nominee Jacob Bossman defeated the Democrat Rita DeJong 55.7% (2,152) to 44.3% (1,712) in an expected low turnout for a special election. Carlin won election to that seat in 2016 beating Democrat Perla Arlacon-Flory 65.5% (9,655) to 34.5% (5,086) in a much higher turnout in a presidential election year. Former State Representative Ron Jorgenson (R-Sioux City) who chose not to run for re-election ran unopposed during the general elections in 2012 and 2014.
Registered Republicans (7,778) outnumber registered Democrats by over 2700 voters. No party voters also outnumber Democrats in that district by just over 1600 voters.
Bossman, who lost a close Republican primary to Carlin in 2016, lives in the Morningside area of Sioux City with his wife Carmen and their twin daughters. Bossman served on the staff of U.S. Senator Chuck Grassley for 12 years and was currently a regional director for Grassley. Bossman is a longtime member of Morningside Lutheran Church. He currently serves on the Morningside College Alumni Board. He also coaches YMCA youth soccer and has volunteered for Siouxland Youth for Christ and the Big Brothers Big Sisters of Siouxland’s Every Classroom Counts program.
“Congratulations to Jacob Bossman, who’s going to be a great member of the Iowa House and a solid ally as we fight to build a better Iowa,” Iowa GOP Chairman Jeff Kaufmann said in response to Tuesday’s victory.”
Kaufmann took a shot at Iowa House Minority Leader Mark Smith (D-Marshalltown).
“Looks like Iowa House Minority Leader Mark Smith campaign to be Majority Leader is off to a rough start, as Smith’s candidate came up short in tonight’s special election,” Kaufmann boasted.
“It’s just more of the same for Smith – who’s never flipped a Republican seat while watching Republicans win six seats previously held by Democrats. Since taking over as head of the House Democrats in 2013, Smith is 0-117 in races against a sitting Republican legislator.”
Iowa Democratic Party Chair Tony Price considered the race a moral victory.
“Rita’s tenacity and dedication to putting Iowa back on track brought the people of Woodbury County together and swung the district by nearly 20 points,” Price said in a released statement.
“She was outspent 10 to 1 in a district that Donald Trump won by 30 points just last year. By all conventional political wisdom, we shouldn’t have had a shot, but 2018 is not a conventional year,” he stated. “Iowans are paying attention. They know what four, even two more years of full Republican control will do to our communities, and they’ve had enough.”
“House District 6 is the 29th most conservative district in the state. We have the momentum, and if we work hard and keep it up, the writing is on the wall for the Iowa House Republican Majority,” Price added.