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1996 United States Senate election in Iowa

The 1996 United States Senate election in Iowa was held on November 5, 1996. Incumbent Democratic U.S. Senator Tom Harkin sought re-election to a third term in office, and he was challenged by U.S. Congressman Jim Ross Lightfoot from Iowa's 3rd congressional district. Lightfoot had won the Republican primary against two opponents, while Harkin had won his primary uncontested, so both moved on to the general election, where they engaged in a toughly fought campaign. Ultimately, Harkin was successful in his bid and defeated Lightfoot, albeit by the thinnest margin of his career.

United States Senate election in Iowa, 1996

← 1990 November 5, 1996 2002 →
  Tom Harkin official portrait.jpg Jimrlightfoot.jpg
Nominee Tom Harkin Jim Ross Lightfoot
Party Democratic Republican
Popular vote 634,166 571,807
Percentage 51.8% 46.7%

Iowa Senate Election Results by County, 1996.svg
County results
Harkin:      30-40%      40–50%      50–60%      60–70%
Lightfoot:      40-50%      50-60%      60-70%
     70–80%      80-90%

U.S. Senator before election

Tom Harkin
Democratic

Elected U.S. Senator

Tom Harkin
Democratic

Contents

Democratic primaryEdit

CandidatesEdit

ResultsEdit

Democratic primary results[1]
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Tom Harkin (Incumbent) 98,737 99.19%
Democratic Write-ins 810 0.81%
Total votes 99,547 100.00%

Republican primaryEdit

CandidatesEdit

ResultsEdit

Republican primary results[1]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Jim Ross Lightfoot 101,608 61.48%
Republican Maggie Tinsman 40,955 24.78%
Republican Steve Grubbs 22,554 13.65%
Republican Write-ins 153 0.09%
Total votes 165,270 100.00%

General electionEdit

ResultsEdit

United States Senate election in Iowa, 1996[2]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Democratic Tom Harkin (Incumbent) 634,166 51.81% -2.66%
Republican James Ross Lightfoot 571,807 46.71% +1.30%
Independent Sue Atkinson 9,768 0.80%
Natural Law Fred Gratzon 4,248 0.35%
Independent Joe Sulentic 1,941 0.16%
Socialist Workers Shirley E. Pena 1,844 0.15%
Write-ins 280 0.02%
Majority 62,359 5.09% -3.96%
Turnout 1,224,054
Democratic hold Swing

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit