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Loebsack coasts to primary victory

The 3-term Democratic congressman will face attorney John Archer in the November election.

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Posted: Wednesday, June 6, 2012 12:00 am

DES MOINES -- Three-term Democratic congressman Dave Loebsack will try to defend his seat against Bettendorf corporate attorney John Archer in the November election, as Archer defeated Muscatine home builder Dan Dolan on Tuesday in the 2nd district GOP contest in southeast Iowa.

The win came as Loebsack coasted to an easy primary victory in the 2nd congressional district in southeast Iowa over state Sen. Joe Seng.

Archer and Dolan agreed on most issues throughout the campaign, but highlighted their different backgrounds as they campaigned.

Archer, 47, a lawyer who served as senior counsel at agricultural equipment manufacturer Deere & Co., said his campaign has the stronger organization needed to compete in the new district.

Dolan, 52, has highlighted his work as an electrician and homebuilder who launched his own company, Dan Dolan Homes, which has built more than 300 houses in the district. He offered himself as a champion job creator who would help turn the nation's economy around if elected.

Loebsack will be campaigning on new turf in the 2nd congressional district. The new congressional boundaries that took effect last year have expanded both districts, forcing Loebsack and Rep. Bruce Braley to compete in new areas where they have less voter recognition.

"We had a good ground game, and we focused on the issues," Loebsack said Tuesday night. "We know for a fact that this general election race will be more competitive, but we're going to be focused on jobs and getting the country back on the right track."

The redrawn boundaries prompted Loebsack to move to Iowa City to avoid facing Braley. Loebsack, 59, has aggressively campaigned in the new district and argued that the concerns from constituents in his old and new districts are largely the same.

In the contested 1st and 2nd Districts, redistricting has meant the addition of more rural counties and a swapping of Iowa's second- and third-largest cities --Cedar Rapids moved into the 1st District and Davenport into the 2nd.

Seng had portrayed himself as a moderate Democrat who was opposed to abortion and to an Obama administration rule that initially would have required church-affiliated employers, such as colleges and hospitals, to cover the cost of contraceptives for employees.

© 2015 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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