WATERLOO — Eric Giddens, a Democrat, won the special election for the Senate District 30 seat on Tuesday.
He will replace former Sen. Jeff Danielson, a Democrat who resigned the office in February to take a job with the American Wind Energy Association.
Giddens, 45, of Cedar Falls, gathered 7,610 votes, for a convincing win over Walt Rogers, a former state representative, who had 5,631 votes. Libertarian Fred Perryman had 143.
Winter weather and melting snow posed an obstacle to campaigning, with the cancellation of several canvassing events.
Then flooding forced Black Hawk County to move one of its polling places for Cedar Falls Ward 1, Precinct 1to the Cedar Falls City Hall.
The Senate district includes all of Cedar Falls and parts of Hudson and Waterloo.
At least 1,100 absentee ballots were cast in the week leading up to the election, with more than 800 coming from satellite voting sites on the University of Northern Iowa campus, where Giddens is a program manager for the Center for Energy and Environmental Education.
Because the election fell during spring break, both Democratic and Republican student activists encouraged early voting by their classmates.
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At least nine Democrats who are running for president came to the area to campaign for Giddens, and some sent videos and campaign workers.
Rogers, 57, resigned from his job at the Iowa Public Employment Relations Board to run for office.
The special election is estimated to have cost $41,500.
Rogers’ campaign raised $45,070 to Giddens’ $43,600.50.