A North Dakota businessman and rancher who died October 5 after a battle with Covid-19 appears to have been elected to the state House.
David Andahl, 55, was the Republican candidate on the ballot alongside four other candidates in the race for North Dakota’s 8th district. He received about 35.53% of the total votes, according to unofficial results from the state.
Andahl’s death in October had prompted questions about what would happen were he to win the election in November. North Dakota’s attorney general issued an opinion stating that the situation would be treated just as an official’s decision to step down or retire, meaning that the district’s Republican Party would appoint a representative to fill his seat.
His family announced that he had died of the virus in a statement on his campaign’s Facebook page last month. “Our beloved son David passed away yesterday after a short battle with COVID-19,” the October 6 statement read. “He was very cautious especially because he did have a few health challenges, but he was unable to fend off this disease. We are heartbroken, and we ask that he be remembered not by how he died, but by how he lived.”
Andahl defeated long-time incumbent state Rep. Jeff Delzer in a June primary and was endorsed by North Dakota Gov. Doug Burgum and US Sen. Kevin Cramer.
Andahl’s family thanked the supporters who had played a role in his bid for the state House.
“He has been a public servant for many years and was looking forward to the opportunity to serve in the state legislature,” his family said in a statement. “We are sad that his wish will not come to pass. We thank all of you who have supported David in the past, and we ask for your continued support and prayers as we make arrangements to celebrate his life.”