Speed Reads

election 2020

A North Dakota candidate who died of COVID-19 seemingly just won his election

David Andahl, a North Dakota "Trump Republican" running for his state legislature, appeared to win his election on Tuesday night. There was only one problem: Andahl died due to complications from COVID-19 back in October, Fox 9 reports.

Though Andahl was still listed on the ballot, the Republican Party will appoint his replacement now that he's evidently won. "If a deceased candidate receives the majority of the votes, the candidate is elected," North Dakota Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem has previously explained. "However, if the prevailing candidate has died, the candidate is no longer qualified and a vacancy will exist. State law provides the process to fill vacancies of a legislative office."

Andahl was 55, and died just four days after showing symptoms for the disease; he was known as "Dakota Dave," due to his love of his state, his obituary said. His odd victory is a tragic reminder that election day was held in the midst of a raging pandemic, with at least 1,130 new coronavirus deaths and 92,410 new cases reported nationally on Tuesday.