Westphal enters Iowa House race

Rural Marshalltown resident Ben Westphal has entered the Iowa House race as a candidate in District 72.

Westphal, a Democrat, will run unopposed in the June 3 primary and take on incumbent Rep. Dean Fisher, R-Garwin, in the Nov. 4 general election.

The filing deadline for primary candidates was Friday.

Westphal, 33, works as a cook at the Iowa Veterans Home. This is the first run at public office for Westphal. He is originally from the State Center area and is a 1999 West Marshall High School graduate.

“I’d like to see people have a fair shot and stand up for the people,” Westphal said.

He said he would also like to see the minimum wage raised to $10.10 an hour, have proper funding for schools and the reopening of the Iowa Juvenile Home in Toledo.

“That’s a big impact on the community,” Westphal said.

Westphal feels Fisher could have done more to keep IJH open.

“Dean’s a very nice guy but I don’t see him doing much in the way of helping out what’s going on at the Iowa Juvenile Home,” Westphal said.

Westphal said he felt the need to help people, which is a major reason why he is running this year. He said he plans to do plenty of door knocking as part of his campaign this year.

“We’re going to put the feet to the streets and do phone banks,” Westphal said.

Fisher, who was first elected in 2012, is wrapping up his two-year term in the Iowa House this year and announced his bid for re-election in January.

District 72 includes all of Tama County and portions of Marshall County and Black Hawk County.