A few days after officially becoming an independent candidate, Jeff VanDerWerff is ramping up his quest to win the Iowa House District 4 seat.

VanDerWerff, of Orange City, is vying with Republican Skyler Wheeler, of Orange City, in the heavily Republican district. The outcome will be decided in Nov. 8 balloting.

VanDerWerff already was on the ballot once this year, when he came in third in a Republican primary in June. He received 25.6 percent, behind the 44.5 percent of Wheeler, who won the GOP nomination. VanDerWerff subsequently gathered enough signatures to be nominated by petition in August.

VanDerWerff has planned a Tuesday event at the Sioux County Courthouse in Orange City. He will be joined by Rock Valley Mayor Kevin Van Otterloo, who finished second in the June party primary for House District 4.

VanDerWerff will also introduce two other supporters -- former Republican state Sen. Dave Mulder and Sioux County Board of Supervisors Chairman Mark Sybesma.

Wheeler got traction for his primary win with an endorsement of The Family Leader, a socially conservative advocacy group.

There is no Democratic candidate in the Iowa House District 4 race.

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County and education reporter

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