116 3rd St SE
Cedar Rapids, Iowa 52401
CEDAR RAPIDS — In a game of political musical chairs, what was shaping up as a three-way race for the Democratic nomination in Iowa Senate 33 now looks to be a two-person race, with one of the candidates opting instead to run for an open House seat in southeast Cedar Rapids.
After Rep. Liz Bennett formally entered the race for the seat now held by Sen. Rob Hogg, a fellow Democrat who is not seeking re-election in 2022, community organizer Sami Scheetz announced Thursday morning he would withdraw from the race and seek the [arty’s nomination for Bennett’s southeast Cedar Rapids House 65 seat.
His decision was based on his respect for Bennett and belief “she will be an excellent member of the Iowa Senate.”
Bennett, who had said earlier in the week that she was exploring a bid for Hogg’s Senate seat, announced her decision at a Linn County Democratic Party meeting Wednesday evening.
“Iowans deserve a fair shot,” Bennett said. “The basic agreement in our society is that if you work hard, you should be able to succeed. Too many Iowans struggle with low wages, high medical costs, and underfunded public schools. I’m running for Senate because now, more than ever, everyday Iowans need an experienced, progressive voice fighting for them.”
Bennett said she had received a “large amount” of community support as she considered the Senate run.
She joins teacher Breanna Oxley in the June 2022 Democratic primary. The winner will advance to the general election in November.
Hogg won his 2018 re-election with 64 percent of the vote in the district that covers southeast Cedar Rapids and extends north to wrap around Hiawatha.
Since announcing his candidacy for the Senate two weeks ago, Scheetz said he received the support of several progressive activists around the state and raised nearly $20,000, which will be transferred to his House campaign.
“Education, health care, and workers’ rights will be the three pillars of my campaign,” Scheetz said. “Iowa used to be a place where if you worked hard and played by the rules, you could make it in life. We know that’s no longer the case, and that is what we must change. Hardworking Iowans deserve a fair shake.”
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