The primary election is less than six weeks away. That means we have another five weeks of television political ads to sit through. It also means we have five weeks to determine which candidates we think would best represent us in the offices they are seeking.
If you are a registered voter in Dawson County you have probably received a letter from the county clerk explaining the redistricting and how it may affect your voting location and your ballot. Every 10 years government entities are required to adjust their precinct, subdivision and district boundaries based on population data collected from the U.S. Census. Part of the requirement is to make sure that districts, such as county commissioner districts, are equal in population numbers.
We experienced the results of the redistricting in the Legislature as well, as new boundaries were drawn that changed which district the community is in and who our representative is. Dawson County was formerly in the 33rd Legislative District, represented by Sen. Matt Williams. As a result of the redistricting, the county is now in the 44th District under Sen. Dan Hughes.
A native of Imperial, Sen. Hughes is a farmer and businessman who was first elected to the Nebraska Legislature in 2014. He was re-elected in 2018, and has not filed to retain his seat. Two candidates are looking to fill that position - Edward Dunn and Theresa Ibach.
Edward Dunn was born in Spokane, Washington. He served in the U.S. Army from 2004 to 2014. He earned an associate degree from Phoenix University in 2007. Dunn has served as a Joint Operations Committee Board Member for Nebraska Municipal Power Pool, a Finance Committee Board Member for Municipal Energy Agency of Nebraska, the West Central Nebraska Development District President, the District Governor Elect for Nebraska Lions Multiple District 38L, and the Vice President of the Perkins County Chamber of Commerce. He is affiliated with the Grant Lions Club and the Grant Rotary Club.
Dunn will face off in the May 10 primary against Theresa Ibach, who has not yet completed a candidate survey or provided a biography.
Candidates you will see on the statewide primary ballot include: for Governor of Nebraska - Carol Blood and Roy Harris, Democratic candidates; and Republican candidates Donna Nicole Carpenter, Michael Connely, Charles Herbster, Brett Lindstrom, Lela McNinch, Jim Pillen, Breland Ridenour, Theresa Thibodeau and Troy Wentz. Libertarian Scott Zimmerman is also on the gubernatorial ballot.
No candidates will appear on the primary ballot for Lieutenant Governor, and for the office of Nebraska Attorney General two Republican candidates have filed: Jennifer Hicks and Mike Hilgers. There are no Democratic candidates for attorney general, and one third party candidate - Larry Bolinger, representing the Legal Marijuana Now Party.
There are no Democratic candidates in the primary for the office of Secretary of State. The three Republican candidates are Bob Evnen (Incumbent), Robert Borer and Rex Schroder. There will also be no Democratic candidates on the primary ballot for State Treasurer. Republican candidates are John Murante (Incumbent) and Paul Anderson; and Katrina Tomsen is also running for the office representing the Libertarian party.
The seat of State Auditor has two Republican candidates - Larry Anderson and Mike Foley. Also on the ballot for that position are Libertarian Gene Siadek and L. Leroy Lopez of the Legal Marijuana Now Party.
The State Board of Education is divided into eight districts, with Dawson County located in District 7. Currently we are represented on the Board by Robin Stevens of Gothenburg, who is seeking re-election. Opposing him on the primary ballot are Pat Moore and Elizabeth Tegtmeier.
Dawson County is also located in District 7 on the State Board of Regents, which has three candidates on the primary ballot for that seat. Those three are Nolan Gurnsey, Matt Williams and Kathy Wilmot. For Public Service Commissioner District 5 there are three Republican candidates: Mary Ridder (Incumbent), Dakota Delka and Kevin Stocker.
To register to vote in Nebraska, you must be a citizen of the United States, a resident of the Nebraska county in which you are registering, and at least 18 years old by the first Tuesday after the first Monday in November. A voter registration application can be completed in person at the county clerk or election commissioner's office, the Department of Motor Vehicles, or other state agencies. In-person registration must be completed by the second Friday preceding the election - which this year is April 29. Applications returned by mail must be postmarked by April 22, and online applications must be submitted by 5 p.m. on April 22.
Polls for the primary election on Tuesday, May 10 will be open from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. If you have questions about your polling location contact the Dawson County Clerks office.
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