Orange City, Iowa — An Orange City man who finished 3rd in the June Republican Primary for Iowa House District 4, has filed nomination papers to run as an Independent for that seat in the November 8th General Election.
In his announcement of candidacy, Jeff VanDerWerff says he turned in nomination petitions for the November election with more than 100 signatures of business, ag and community leaders, many elected officeholders themselves.
VanDerWerff says that he’s called Orange City home for nearly 30 years, and that it’s his intention, as a life-long member of the Republican party, to focus on economic development and educational matters, especially given his own training and background. He says he cares a great deal about social issues, saying anyone who knows him knows he’s pro-life and pro-family, that he supports the second amendment and the individual right to keep and bear arms, and that he’s deeply committed to the on-going battle over religious liberty.
His announcement says that, at the very same time, he fully appreciates a reality where “nearly six-out-of-every-ten dollars of the state budget goes to education, where local control is essential, and where business and industry—whether livestock agriculture or banking or manufacturing or communications—needs legislation enacted by state government, which helps generate a healthy entrepreneurial environment through sound fiscal policies and common sense regulation.
VanDerWerff observed that “in the Republican primary this past June, considerably more voters in House District 4 did not choose Wheeler than did.” The three-way race for the nomination saw a decidedly low turnout, with barely 25 percent of registered GOP members participating. VanDerWerff says he thinks either Kevin Van Otterloo, or VanDerWerff himself, would have won, had either of them faced Wheeler one-on-one. He says it’s clear he and Van Otterloo split the majority of the conservative vote while Wheeler cornered a passionate, single issue bloc to win with just a plurality.
Jeff VanDerWerff finished with 25% of the vote in the June Primary, finishing 3rd behind Skyler Wheeler, who garnered 44% of the vote, followed by Rock Valley Mayor Kevin Van Otterloo who garnered 29% of the vote.