Sen. Hoeven beats political newcomer in GOP primary

Senator John Hoeven
Senator John Hoeven(KFYR)
Published: Jun. 14, 2022 at 8:23 PM CDT
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BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) — U.S. Sen. John Hoeven easily won North Dakota’s Republican primary Tuesday, coasting past an unknown and poorly funded political neophyte ahead of a November matchup when he’s again likely to be a heavy favorite.

Hoeven defeated Riley Kuntz, an oil field worker who said Hoeven had been in Washington far too long but who raised less than $5,000 for his long-shot bid. Hoeven, seeking his third term at age 65, raised more than $3.2 million in the run-up to the primary.

Katrina Christiansen, a University of Jamestown engineering professor, had the Democratic endorsement in that party’s primary, where she faced Michael Steele, a Fargo art and antiques dealer.

Both Christiansen and Steele were largely unknown outside their hometowns, and raised little money — about $21,000 by Christiansen and $2,100 by Steele.

Hoeven won both of his previous Senate terms with more than 76% of the vote.

GOP U.S. Rep. Kelly Armstrong was unopposed as he seeks a second term. Democrat Mark Haugen, also unopposed, is his November opponent Haugen, of Bismarck, is a University of Mary graduate adviser and has long worked as a paramedic.

Hoeven was first elected to the Senate in 2010 after longtime Democratic Sen. Byron Dorgan retired.

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