District of the Day: Senate District 3, House District 5 and 6
The last time a Democrat was seen in Le Mars: Senator Obama gets some Blue Bunny.
Senate District 3
Registration: D 9848, R 15,607, N 13,790, total 39,274, R+ 5759
Incumbent: Bill Anderson, R-Pierson
It's a common theme in legislative politics: people who lose leadership fights tend to retire soon after. Sioux City Republican Ron Weick was Senate minority leader for one session in 2008, but got overthrown soon after the election by Paul McKinley.
Adding to the indignity, when Weick retired in 2010, his chosen successor was pushed out of the race by ex-King/Grassley staffer Bill Anderson, who went on to a relatively easy general election win in old district 27.
The old seat included the southern end of Sioux City and Sergeant Bluff as half the district, then went northeast to Cherokee County (the old Dan Huseman house seat). Anderson's new seat keeps south Sioux City, but then wraps around the rest of the city to pick up most of Plymouth County. As a result the seat gets a little more Republican. Anderson holds over till 2014.
House District 5
Registration: D 4426, R 8975, N 7421, total 20837, R+ 4549
Incumbent: Chuck Soderberg, R-Le Mars
Soderberg, 53, first went to the house in 2004 from old district 3 when Ralph Klemme retired, with a solid primary win and no general election opponent. Soderberg got a 2008 challenge by self-starter Democrat T.J. Templeton, who wasted a little on-line money and lost by more than three to one. No one bothered in 2010.
Soderberg (seen yesterday floor-managing the nuclear power plant bill) loses southern Sioux County, and Orange City, to Dwayne Alons, and instead gets rural parts of north and west Woodbury. He loses more than 2000 Republicans as a result, but the seat is still solid red.
House District 6
Registration: D 5422, R 6632, N 6369, total 18437, R+ 1210
Incumbent: Ron Jorgensen, R-Sioux City
What was I saying about overthrown legislative leaders stepping down? After Kraig Paulsen ousted Christopher Rants as Republican House leader, Rants left, with a brief stab at a run for governor on the way out.
Our first district that's basically urban, this was the Rants seat till last year when Jorgensen took over old district 54, defeating `08 Rants opponent Carlos Venable-Ridley with relative ease. Jorgensen, 53, keeps roughly the same south chunk of Sioux City (the line moves a few blocks south in places) and gains a few rural townships and along with them a few hundred Republicans.
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