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18-Year-Old Wins Father's Mayoral Seat

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A political dynasty is emerging in northern Iowa. This past week, Jeremy Minnier was elected mayor of Aredale, Iowa, as was his father before him. Host Audie Cornish has more.


A political dynasty is emerging in Northern Iowa. This past week, Jeremy Minnier was elected mayor of Aredale, Iowa, like his father before him. Jeremy says his dad was happy but nervous about his Election Day victory.

MAYOR JEREMY MINNIER: He was supportive of it. He didn't know that. He said, I think you are taking something under your hands that you're not going to be able to handle, because he knew what it was like.

CORNISH: He thinks his dad and others are getting too caught up on a number. Jeremy Minnier is just 18 years old.

MINNIER: People think I'm young. I'm only 18, I can't do this. Well, there's a lot of young adults that are interested in these topics.

CORNISH: Another small number, Aredale, Iowa's population: 74. That's important when considering Jeremy's margin of victory.

MINNIER: I had 24 write-in votes with the incumbent mayor; Virgil Homer, with eight votes.

CORNISH: And that write-in candidacy? Jeremy says it came as a complete surprise.

MINNIER: One of the business owners in town showed me the paper and he said, here -what do you think about my ad this week. And I'd seen my name there in big red print and I thought, oh, my word. And then, it was just saying to write me in on November 8th, paid for by Citizens to Elect Jeremy Minnier.

CORNISH: As Aredale's mayor-elect, this high school senior says he plans to focus on improving the town's appearance and finding solutions to its water access issues. Still, he says he plans to remain active with his church youth group and the Future Farmers of America. He is, after all, pretty well-known around town.

MINNIER: I've pretty much cleaned everybody's gutters in Aredale. And people look at that and think that's a good thing.

CORNISH: Call it an end to politics as usual.

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