Miller-Meeks, Feenstra survive Iowa primary election challenges


(The Center Square) – U.S. Reps Mariannette Miller-Meeks and Randy Feenstra successfully fended off their primary challengers Tuesday.

Miller-Meeks faced a challenge from David Pautsch, who was critical of her vote to certify the 2020 presidential election. She will go head-to-head with Democratic candidate Christina Bohannan in November.

“We will work hard to hold Biden and the Democrats accountable in November and fire them,” Miller-Meeks said in a thank you post on Facebook to voters.

Feenstra held steady against Republican challenger Kevin Virgil, a U.S. Army veteran and former CIA case officer whose endorsements included former presidential candidate Vivek Ramaswamy and the Republican Liberty Caucus group.

“Tonight, Iowans sent a clear message that they want a conservative voice in Congress who delivers results for our families, farmers, businesses, and our rural communities,” said Feenstra. “I’m humbled by the strong support for our campaign and will continue to deliver for Iowa and our communities.”

Feenstra will face Ryan Melton in the general election.

“The only ‘clear message’ from the Republican primary in IA-04 is a twice-elected incumbent got 40% of the vote and 9 counties taken away from him by a guy who got in to challenge him with no name recognition, no corporate PAC money, who got in the race really late,” said Melton.

Ashley Hinson, who supported Feenstra, sailed through the primary with no challenger but will go against Democrat Sarah Corkery in November.

Likewise, Zach Nunn faced no challenge from the right during the primary. Lanon Baccam, an employee of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, won the Democratic vote for District 3 and will face Nunn in the general election.

Baccam beat fellow Democrat Melissa Vine, who was hit with a maximum fine of $500 last week from the Iowa Ethics and Campaign Disclosure Board for a reporting violation.

The race between Nunn and Baccam represents one of the 34 congressional district seats that Democrats are targeting.

“I’m honored and grateful for the support and trust so many Iowans have put in me,” Baccam said in a statement. “We are building a movement to restore effective representation for Iowa focused on working families. As a rural Iowan born and raised, combat veteran, and former USDA official, I’ve spent my life giving back to our communities and I’m ready to continue to fight for them in Congress.”

Three of the 25 Iowa Senate seats on the ballot will be filled by newcomers next year.

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