The death of David Andahl Monday, a Republican candidate for District 8, came as a shock to many friends, family and colleagues.
While they continue to mourn him, Andahl’s passing has raised questions regarding the November election — one of them being how to address his candidacy.
Secretary of State Al Jaeger says though North Dakotans have voted and continue to do so, Andahl’s name cannot be removed from the ballot, so all the votes cast for him will be counted.
If Andahl is one of the top two recipients of votes in District 8, which covers part of the state east and north of Bismarck, he would be considered elected. While Jaeger says this situation hasn’t happened in recent memory, there is state law that explains the protocol of what to do if he is elected.
“Obviously he would not be able to serve, and so a vacancy would be declared. Under state law there is a very specific process that allows the district political party to appoint somebody to fill that vacancy and allow that individual to represent the district in the upcoming legislative session,” Jaeger said.
It was confirmed earlier Tuesday that Andahl, who was 55 years old, died of coronavirus complications.