Single-issue approach was failure
Orange City voters chose a mayor on Tuesday, and they did so based on more than one issue.
Incumbent Deb De Haan swept to victory over Kurt Korver 1,813-566 votes, according to the unofficial count. De Haan, Orange City’s first female leader, has been in office for six years and residents saw no reason for a change.
Especially not over a single, highly divisive issue, which is what Korver, a local health-care provider, ran on in this campaign. He focused on OC Pride, a LGBTQ event that has been controversial but caused little real trouble.
Still, Korver said he was focused on protecting the moral character of the community. By supporting De Haan in a landslide, voters said, loud and clear, that they are confident that seeing a few people gather to dance and celebrate poses no real risk to their lives.
He also touched on fiscal responsibility, lower taxes and economic growth, but the overriding message was anti-LGBTQ. That came through loud and clear, and voters, even in this conservative corner of Iowa, did not appear overly interested.
Instead, they responded to De Haan’s campaign, which included her support for continued economic development, more affordable housing and expanding recreational trails. She has been a prudent and progressive mayor and her re-election shows voters realize that.
Many who supported her may not attend or even like the OC Pride events. But they don’t wish to select a mayor based on that.