Democratic Congressional Candidates for 4th district hold town hall at Ames Public Library


Jillian Alt/Iowa State Daily

Candidates for the 4th district John Paschen and J.D. Scholten answer questions from Ames citizens during town hall meeting at the Ames Public Library. The event took place from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. on Thursday night

Jill Alt

The Ames Public Library hosted a congressional candidate town hall meeting Thursday from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. with candidates John Paschen and J.D. Scholten. These candidates are running against eight-time incumbent Steve King for the 4th district congressional chair. 

Participants wrote down questions on notecards which were asked by a mediator. Topics included free speech, legalization of marijuana, medicare, and gun rights as well as many questions regarding party loyalties and issues.
The other democratic candidates running for the 4th district, Leann Jacobsen from Spencer, Iowa and Webster City native Paul Dahl, fell ill and could not attend.
John Paschen is a pediatrician from Ames, Iowa and his primary goals include medicare for all, establishing jobs and fair immigration laws. He said that medical care should be accessible to everyone and wants that to be a high priority should he go to Washington.
He pulled from his experience as a doctor often, talking about the people he’s interacted with over the years. He talked about a patient whose parents had to reassure him that people wouldn’t come into their home to take them away, even though they came to America legally. 
J.D. Scholten, standing at 6 feet 6 inches tall, is a former baseball player from Sioux City and his primary goals include improving agriculture, bettering the job market, and health care.
He spoke against the war in Iraq. While he was still a college kid, he took a 20-hour bus ride from Lincoln, Nebraska to Washington D.C. to protest the war. 
“I protested the war when I was in college and we’re still there,” Scholten said.
The candidates did not stray away from controversial topics like abortion and gun rights during the event, speaking directly regarding their views. However the two also cracked jokes to lighten the mood, the chuckles in the crowd breaking the tension of the serious topics. 
The republican candidates for the 4th district are Steve King and Sioux City native Cyndi Hanson.
The primary election will take place in June 5, 2018.
For more information regarding the democratic candidates at this event, click the links below:
The primary election will be in June 2018.