DES MOINES — Sen. Ken Rozenboom was the lone no-voter in the Iowa Senate for the second redistricting plan from the state.

Rozenboom, a Republican from Oskaloosa, currently represents all of Mahaska, Monroe and Appanoose counties, and portions of Marion and Wapello counties.

The proposed redistricting plan would lump him and Sen. Adrian Dickey, a Republican from Packwood, into the same district. It would force one of the two to concede or move, or both to face a primary.

The Senate remained in session after the redistricting vote, and Rozenboom did not immediately respond for request for comment.

Rozenboom and Dickey would both be placed into the new Iowa Senate District 44, which would cover most of Mahaska County including Oskaloosa, as well as all of Keokuk, Jefferson and Van Buren counties, and a portion of Henry County that includes Mount Pleasant.

Sen. Rob Hogg, an Iowa City Democrat, was not present for voting Thursday. All other 48 Iowa Senators voted to approve the proposal.

The Iowa House approved the plan Thursday evening by a 93-2 margin. Rep. Jon Jacobsen, R-Council Bluffs, and Rep. Tom Jeneary, of R-LeMars, were the two no votes, and five representatives were absent.

The plan heads to Gov. Kim Reynolds for signature.

How redistricting will impact area

Mariannette Miller-Meeks, an Ottumwa Republican, has been lumped in with the new third congressional district, which will include Wapello, Davis, Appanoose and Monroe Counties, as well as both Dallas and Polk counties, among others.

That could set up an election bout with incumbent Cindy Axne, D-West Des Moines. The 1st Congressional District, which includes Mahaska, Keokuk, Jefferson and Van Buren counties as well as Iowa City, Davenport and others, has no incumbent.

Per the U.S. Constitution, representatives in the U.S. House are only required to live in the state they represent. They do not need to live in the specific district they’re elected to, though they typically do. Rather than face Axne, Miller-Meeks could file to run for the 1st District seat whether she moves to that district or not.

Ashley Hinson, a Republican from Dubuque, would live in the new 2nd District, which would represent Cedar Rapids in northeast Iowa. Randy Feenstra, a Republican from Hull, would live in the new 4th District, representing a wide swath of western Iowa, but that stretches to Ames and Fort Dodge.

Rozenboom and Dickey are not the only sitting state senators who are paired together. Of Iowa’s 50 senators, 20 are drawn into districts together. Of 100 representatives, 38 are drawn together.

Contrasting with the U.S. House seats, state senators and representatives do have to live in their districts. To qualify for a seat at the statehouse, representatives must be an Iowa resident for more than a year, and a resident of the district at least 60 days before the election.

All of Wapello, Davis and Monroe counties would join most of Appanoose County in Iowa Senate District 13. There is no incumbent senator in the area.

The western portion of Mahaska, a portion of Marion that includes Pella, and all of Jasper County will form the new Iowa Senate District 19. There is no incumbent in this district.

District 12 will represent a western sliver of Appanoose that includes Plano, all of Wayne, Lucas, Clarke, Decatur, Adair and Madison counties, with portions of Union and Dallas counties. Amy Sinclair, of Allerton, is the only incumbent in that district.

Inside those Iowa Senate districts are seven house districts that would represent the readership area. Two would be open seats and four would pit sitting representatives against each other.

District 25 is similar to the current District 81, including Ottumwa and the southeastern part of Wapello County. Cherielynn Westrich is the only incumbent in the area.

District 26 has no current incumbent, and will include all of Davis and Monroe, and portions of Appanoose and Wapello County.

District 87 is made up of all of Van Buren County, as well as southern Jefferson County that includes Fairfield, and southwestern Henry County that includes Mount Pleasant. Jeff Shipley, R-Fairfield, and Joe Mitchell, R-Mount Pleasant, are both incumbents living in this district.

District 88 is the eastern one-third of Mahaska County, including Oskaloosa, all of Keokuk County and northern Jefferson County. Holly Brink, R-Oskaloosa, and Dustin Hite, R-New Sharon, both are incumbents in this new district.

District 37 includes western Mahaska County, a portion of Marion County that includes Pella, and southern Jasper County. This would be an open seat.

District 21 includes a portion of Marion County that includes Knoxville and a portion of Warren that includes Indianola. Jon Thorup, R-Knoxville, and Brooke Boden, R-Indianola, both live in this district.

District 24 would include Decatur, Wayne and Lucas Counties, as well as a portion of western Appanoose, and most of Clarke including Osceola. Joe Fry, R-Osceola, would be the district’s lone incumbent.

Kyle Ocker is the editor of the Ottumwa Courier and the Oskaloosa Herald. He can be reached at Follow him on Twitter @Kyle_Ocker.


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Kyle Ocker is a Centerville native and award-winning multimedia journalist. Kyle is currently the president of the Iowa Freedom of Information Council and vice president of the Iowa Print Sports Writers Association.

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