A conversation with the state’s youngest-ever lawmaker
BISMARCK, N.D. (KFYR) - The Legislature will soon be back in session, and there are about three dozen new lawmakers across the state. One of them is the youngest ever.
What were you doing at this time last year? Many in the Legislature were taking periodic breaks from their 9-5s to serve on interim committees. But Dawson Holle - likely the state’s youngest public official - was prepping for first semester’s finals, because he was still a senior in high school.
Dawson Holle understands the weight of the position he’s been elected to.
“I feel like a lot of great Legislators have sat here before me and that it’s an overwhelming feeling,” said Holle.
Holle, who was born in 2003, was the top vote-getter in the June primary election, beating out two incumbent lawmakers who had served in the House since 2011.
“A lot of people like the young blood. They like to see that there is someone new running and not the same old-same old. They wanted new representation in District 31,” said Holle.
Holle says part of getting elected was simply listening to his constituents.
“A big part was the expulsion of Luke Simons. I got that, probably 50 times, and I agree with them that their voice wasn’t heard in the matter and the Legislature had a little bit of overreach, in my opinion,” said Holle.
As far as policies go, he’s already joining forces with other dairy farmers across the state to address issues facing the dairy industry. He’s also interested in tax relief.
“I’m not sure in which area we need to lower taxes, if it is property taxes or it’s another tax, but I’ve gotta see those bills before I make a decision,” said Holle.
Coincidentally, the youngest-ever lawmaker was elected on the same ballot as term limits, which means 16 years from now, he could be termed-out of the Legislature at 35.
“I might not be for it, but the people want it, overwhelmingly, so we’ll just have to work with what we’ve got,” said Holle.
The session begins January 3.
Although Holle is the state’s youngest legislator at 19, he certainly won’t be lonely. The new lawmakers were sworn in on Monday, and now there are five Republican state Representatives under the age of 25.
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