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Friday, July 28, 2006

Politically Speaking: Border security hearings set

Excerpted from this post at Politically Speaking

I have a new organization that matches, and it is a pretty high bar, the lead for number of emails daily sent out. Heretofore the Christian News Network had set the standard for most press releases emailed (the most recent this morning — "Who Does Dick Durbin Represent?"), but now the House Republican Border Security Bulletin equals CNN in frequency. That aside, just got word that one of the 19 hearings on border security through Sept. 1 will be held in Iowa. Ensuring that the immigration policy fight will move into the fall and likely impact the November elections, eight House committees will hold 19 hearings in 12 states.

Political Forecast: Facebook, MySpace, and the future of online outreach

Excerpted from this post at Political Forecast

We're seeing an age where politicians and their PACs are finding more innovative and technologically savvy methods to get in touch with the youth in this country -- and stay in touch with them. From the College Dems convention in St. Louis, Indiana Senator Evan Bayh was unable to directly address the audience but was able to offer a short video message (which you can watch here via the beauty of YouTube) and invited the students in attendance to 'Facebook him' (Facebooking is likely to become the newest verb of the English language, just like googling).

John Deeth Blog: Paul Pate on the Comeback Trail?

Excerpted from this post at John Deeth Blog

Former Cedar Rapids Mayor Paul Pate is giving consideration to becoming the Republican Party of Iowa's candidate for Secretary of State, Republican activists told The Gazette. Pate, who served in that office for eight years, would replace Chuck Allison, who dropped out of the race earlier this week, citing personal reasons... Pate never misses an opportunity. He may be Iowa's champion job hopper: state rep and state senator from a Marion district, then in mid-senate term he jumps to Secretary of State forcing two special elections.

Thursday, July 27, 2006

Iowans for Romney: Boston Globe Highlights Risks and Rewards of Upcoming Iowa Visit

Excerpted from this post at Iowans for Romney

The Boston Globe recently ran this article about Gov. Mitt Romney's upcoming planned visit to Iowa, and the political ramifications it may have for him:

Romney and his political action committee, the Commonwealth PAC, are scheduled to host a picnic lunch for Republicans in Ames on Saturday afternoon. That night, the governor is due in Cedar Rapids for a high-profile dinner with GOP donors.

Krusty Konservative: Chuck Allison Drops Out of SOS Race

Excerpted from this post at Krusty Konservative

In a shocking development, Republican nominee for Iowa's Secretary of State, Chuck Allison is calling it quits and dropping out of the race. State Party officials will try to find a candidate to run against Mauro this fall. Kalling Bob Dopf! Kalling Bob Dopf! (I bet Marcus Branstad wishes he knew about all of this before signing on with Sen. Bill Frist...)

Party officials say that Allison is dropping out because of "personal reasons." The Registers story goes on to talk about a lawsuit filed by Allison's former business partner, Robert Moratz. That lawsuit was filed on May 22nd, just over two months ago.

To me that sounds like "legal issues" not "personal issues."

The Republican Party should move swiftly and nominate Bob Dopf to run for Secretary of State. Bob is qualified, knows Mauro better than anyone else out there, and is a reader of this blog to boot. I've had my doubts about Republican's chances of picking up this office, but believe we need to run the most qualified person for the job, that has always been Bob Dopf.

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Century of the Common Iowan: New Odd Couple: Culver and Fallon

Excerpted from this post at Century of the Common Iowan

The Quad City Times has a nice look at the relationship between Chet Culver and Ed Fallon.

Though they have many differences there is one thing to remember come November: But Fallon insists the focus now should be on defeating Republican Jim Nussle. "We have a lot more in common, all of us do, than we have with Jim Nussle," Fallon said.

Iowa Voice: Kerry Says Mideast Conflict Wouldn't Have Happened If He Were President

Excerpted from this post at Iowa Voice

I couldn't help but get the irony of his saying this at a place called "Honest John's". Uhm....yeah. Anyway, Herman would have us believe that if he were President, he'd have this entire thing under control:

U.S. Sen. John Kerry, D- Mass., who was in town Sunday to help Gov. Jennifer Granholm campaign for her re-election bid, took time to take a jab at the Bush administration for its lack of leadership in the Israeli-Lebanon conflict.

"If I was president, this wouldn't have happened," said Kerry during a noon stop at Honest John's bar and grill in Detroit's Cass

Friday, July 21, 2006

Krusty Konservative: Culver -- Nussle Fundraising Analysis

Excerpted from this post at Krusty Konservative

I received a lot of positive feed back from my break down of Culver's fundraising disclosure. I have to admit, I really wanted to hold off and post a true comparison between the Nussle and Culver reports, but I felt the need to get something posted yesterday morning. Now that I have had a little more time I have my comparison finished. The following breaks down both Culver and Nussle's report using the same criteria. The number of Nussle donors is staggering when compared to Culver's.

Iowa Progress: A Sigh of Relief? Iowans 19 Times Less Likely to Die Than Indianans

Excerpted from this post at Iowa Progress

Many Iowans were perplexed last week when the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Inspector General revealed that Iowa has 19 times less stuff worth blowing up than Indiana, according to the DHS's National Asset Database. The National Asset Database (NAD) was created by the Department of Homeland Security to "identify and organize the nation's critical infrastructure and key resources" in order to remain vigilant in the struggle against our nation's enemies -- Islamofascists and hurricanes.

The Passing Parade: Malin inclined to pay partisan bill; not me

Excerpted from this post at The Passing Parade

It's the picture that keeps popping into my head. It was on the front page of the QCT on Tuesday, the day after Vice President Dick Cheney's visit to Davenport. It's an ugly thing, depicting two Davenport police officers towering over two ladies of considerable years. The ladies are dutifully following orders to remove the flimsy little sticks from the American flags they were waving as they trudged with other political marchers along River Drive. Collecting the little sticks was necessary for the security of the vice president, the officers said.

Thursday, July 20, 2006

Century of the Common Iowan: Vilsack adds to his resume to be the named Sec. of Education in 2008

Excerpted from this post at Century of the Common Iowan

Vilsack has teamed up with Hillary Clinton on a plan to help students with rising college tuition. Iowa Gov. Tom Vilsack and U.S. Sen. Hillary Clinton of New York appeared together here today to tout a new $220 billion Democratic initiative to send more students to college in the face of soaring tuition rates.

Blog for Iowa: A Pay Raise for Iowa?

Excerpted from this post at Blog for Iowa

A minimum-wage increase would benefit tens of thousands of working Iowans, the majority over age 20 and most of them female, according to a new report.

"Iowa's minimum wage has remained at $5.15 since 1997," said Elaine Ditsler, research associate for the nonpartisan Iowa Policy Project (IPP) and author of the report. "Back then, gasoline cost $1.22 per gallon and in-state tuition at the University of Iowa was $2,470. Those costs have more than doubled."

Ditsler also noted rising prices for housing, health insurance and other consumer goods. "The purchasing power of the minimum wage is at its lowest level since 1949," she said. "A pay raise for Iowa's working families is past due." According to the report, 21 states and the District of Columbia have raised their minimum wage above the federal level of $5.15. Seven of those states are above $7 per hour and four states adjust the wage every year for inflation.

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Iowa Progress: Clinton/Vilsack 2008?:

Excerpted from this post at Iowa Progress

The rumors are going around, and Vilsack is set to appear with Hillary in DC this week at a Democratic Governors Association press conference.

Here's how the Register reports it: Some pundits as well as Democratic activists have suggested Vilsack would be a good fit on a ticket with Clinton as presidential nominee. Both are active in the centrist Democratic Leadership Council, and both have insisted they will not demand a specific date for withdrawal of U.S. troops from Iraq.

A few days back, Hotline proposed some theories about the role Hillary could play in the race for the '08 Democratic nomination.

Theory 1: ...unless she either doesn't run or appears very vulnerable early on, one theory of the case holds that they will spend their time cozying up to her and tearing into each other. (Grover Norquist endorses that theory, too.) At least in part, they'll try to use the primaries to audition for the general election.

Political Forecast: Thoughts on Bayh's speech

Excerpted from this post at Political Forecast

I think the focus and theme of an opportunity society for the middle class, and how we as Democrats should help build one, is absolutely a focus we should have come November of this year and in 2008.

The theme is reminiscent of Harry Truman and his 'Fair Deal' campaign in 1948, and can seemingly be seen as the fair shot theme that another former Red State governor is using (see Mark Warner). He's got a strong approach to the problems the middle class faces and recognizes that they're an important demographic for Democrats if we want to be the party of power again.

Krusty Konservative: VP visits Iowa to Stump for Kongressional Kandidates

Excerpted from this post at Krusty Konservative

... In his remarks, Cheney talked about how important winning the third district is, and how he and President Bush are looking forward to working with Jeff Lamberti. He briefly spoke about why Jeff would be a good Congressman and why we need people like him in Washington.

Cheney then talked about the economy. He said that the U.S. economy outperformed every industrialized nation last year. He pointed to the umpteen straight quarters of growth and the job creation, in spite of 9-11, a recession, a war, Katrina etc...

He said that three Presidents have enacted broad tax cuts (Kennedy, Reagan, Bush) and they were all followed by periods of economic growth. He also pointed to the challenge we have of beginning to rein in spending and said that Lamberti has a record of doing that in the Iowa Senate and will be a leader on cutting spending in Washington.

Iowa for Feingold: Feingold is not Anti-War

Excerpted from this post at BLOGNAME

I have read on a few blogs and news articles that Sen. Feingold is going to be the Anti-War candidate in 2008 and questioning his anti-war stance with his statements about Israel and Hezbollah.

I think it is important to make it clear that Feingold is not an Anti-War candidate. The media is already trying to pin Feingold as the candidate of the far left (which is what basically happened to Howard Dean).

In actuality, Feingold's principled stances on the issues resonate with voters across
party lines. This was seen back in 2004 when Feingold won 27 counties that voted for Bush.

Monday, July 17, 2006

Homercles: Space Monkey Man of Tomorrow: So I'm not the only one

Excerpted from this post at Homercles: Space Monkey Man of Tomorrow

The Draft Condi movement is larger than I thought. I'm telling ya, she's got all of Bush's strengths, and none of his weaknesses. Plus, it would be fun watching progressives trip over themselves to paint her as a house [epithet I refuse to use] or an Auntie Thomasina. Ah, I can almost smell the hypocrisy now.

Century of the Common Iowan: Fundraising Reports

Excerpted from this post at Century of the Common Iowan

Krusty took the time to go through the fundraising reports and post about them. It is interesting to see how much each candidate is raising and worth the read. even though I disagree with some of Krusty's analysis. Here are the numbers from Krusty's site.

The Bridge to Somewhere: Bill is 75% nothing

Excerpted from this post at The Bridge to Somewhere

I'm not in favor of the government siezing someone's property, especially when it then turns it over to a private developer to build on it. I'm only mildly more inclined to support eminent domain when it comes to building public things like roads. But I just don't have much confidence that this law will protect property rights like people think.

Friday, July 14, 2006

Iowa True Blue: Porkapalooza Tour 2006

Excerpted from this post at Iowa True Blue

Today I announce that I will be launching a Porkapalooza Tour 2006. I will personally tour and blog from a state that has benefited incredibly from Congressman Jim Nussle's leadership of the House Budget Committee. That state is, of course, not Iowa -- its Alaska. According to the conservative group Citizens Against Government Waste (CAGW), Alaska by far received the most amount of pork: $325 million for pork projects last fiscal year. That figure roughly equals a whopping $490 per man, woman, and child living in Alaska.

Krusty Konservative: Time to Override!

Excerpted from this post at Krusty Konservative

There is a good chance today that the Iowa House of Representatives and the State Senate will override the Governor Vilsack's veto of the Eminent domain bill. The House and Senate passed the bill with bi-partisan support during the legislative session. An override will be an embarrassment for the Governor Vilsack who is trying to run for President. Nothing like your state legislature giving you a bi-partisan smack down to end your presidential campaign before it even starts.

The Passing Parade: Gathering in the dollars...

Excerpted from this post at The Passing Parade

Vice-President Dick Cheney will arrive in Davenport Monday with approval ratings in about the same place as the president's -- in the toilet. But his target audience on this visit is the minority who approve, and within that minority it's those with enough money to cough up $500 to $1,000 to listen to the vice president explain what a great congressman Mike Whalen would make. The invitation-only reception at the home of Chuck and Jodi Ruhl will be but a small part of the high-powered money-raising effort Quad-Citians will see between now and November as congressional contests for open seats on both sides of the river turn into dollar-driven slugfests.

Thursday, July 13, 2006

Diary of a political madman: Here's something that probably won't surprise you

Excerpted from this post at Diary of a political madman

I'm not entirely non-partisan. While I've certainly been pretty critical of the Democratic Party lately, I'd like to make sure you all remember that the Republicans have some problems too.

Earlier today, Chris Woods mentioned a Civic Skinny column in Cityview that referenced the Iowa GOP platform, in all its crazy glory. I don't think most Republicans are crazy. In fact, I know some Republicans who are great people, more so than most Democrats I know.

But it seems rather obvious to me that reasonable Republicans avoided this event like the plague, or were shouted down on a wide variety of right-wing, homophobic, xenophobic, bible-thumping issues. In his post, Chris asked for readers to look over the platform, pick a favorite crazy plank, and post it in the comments. I read over the platform, and copied down my favorites to narrow down to one. I can't. Here are my favorite 33.

Iowa Voice: Brand New Website

Excerpted from this post at Iowa Voice

Just got an email from Marshall Manson about a new website devoted to countering the vicious and false attacks on Wal-Mart by paid critics and operatives.

As he says in his email: This site is designed to turn the spotlight back on the attack machine created by union leaders to tear down Wal-Mart. It'll expose the paid critics' hypocrisy, set the record straight when necessary, and point out other tidbits that you won't read in their press releases.

The site will also shed some much-needed light on their motives. I think this is a fabulous idea. Wal-Mart needs to expose who is behind these attacks and what they're REAL agenda is. I've read about two pages so far, and believe me....this site is one that you'll want to bookmark and visit often.

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Gavin's Journal Vol. 2: Planned Parenthood Puzzlement

Excerpted from this post at Gavin's Journal Vol. 2

Planned Parenthood is really getting under my skin these days with its baffling political endorsements. First it was an endorsement of Chet Culver. Jill June, president of PPGI, declared, "Let's make it perfectly clear today that it matters more than ever who you vote for. Among the leading candidates today, Chet Culver stands head and shoulders above the rest.

"Note the use of the word "leading," an implicit slap in the face of rival candidate Ed Fallon (who trailed Culver and Mike Blouin in the polls), who clearly had the best pro-choice platform and voting record.

Not only that, I thought at the time, but to endorse a candidate in a crowded primary where multiple candidates are pro-choice is completely unnecessary. I must say, though, that given all the controversy Planned Parenthood carries I'm glad Fallon didn't get the endorsement for his own sake.

Krusty Konservative: Krusty's Six Pack

Excerpted from this post at Krusty Konservative

Now that the Fourth of July is over, I thought it would be a good time to take a look at how the 08ers are doing in Iowa. Today's Six Pack is the first of many that will look at who are the Top three Republican 08ers in Iowa. To complete the Six Pack the other is filled with three 08ers we need to keep our eyes on. Krusty's Top 3

In the inaugural Six Pack the Governors dominate the field. All three are not seeking re-election and have had plenty of time to travel to Iowa. Romney, Pataki, and Huckabee have a big advantage over the other 08ers who are stuck in Washington D.C.1.

Governor Mitt Romney: Romney has done everything right. He visits the state often, and while here he helps Republican Candidates by either headlining a fundraiser for them, or tosses them a little Commonwealth koin for their kampaigns. Romney has also worked the kaucus activists hard. Last month he released a list of Iowa activists who have signed on to support his Iowa efforts. The leadership team he has assembled in Iowa is top-notch; any kampaign would love to have Gentry Collins, Doug Gross, and Dave Kochel. Romney also is the only kampaign to have field staffers on the ground working the state. Romney is hands down number one in the Six Pack.

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

Diary of a political madman: So I didn't go see Evan Bayh

Excerpted from this post at Diary of a political madman

But I got a quick feel for him from this Daily Iowan article and video. The video is
higher quality in production than one would expect from a college paper, but the content is about what one would expect.

Bayh doesn't start speaking until about halfway through, but before that, they do talk to a local party activist who's supporting Dave Loebsack because "we need to beat Jim Leach."

I'm going to get a welt in the middle of my forehead if I keep seeing that. Hat tip to John Deeth for alerting me to the coverage.

Krusty Konservative: Hotline's Favorite Iowa Blogs

Excerpted from this post at Krusty Konservative

"Demonstrating why Iowa's political culture is second-to-none, there's yet another new '08-centric political tip blog. The Caucus Cooler is designed to give "insiders perspective on the Iowa Caucus." It joins our favorites, including Krusty Konservative, Chris Woods's Political Forecast, and Radio Iowa's Kay Henderson."

Iowa truly is a great place for political junkies, and the Iowa Blogosphere is no different.

Thanks for the shout out. WAR Hotline!

Monday, July 10, 2006

Things Going Round & Round: A question for Bruce Braley -- Will our ten year olds need Social Security in 60 years?

Excerpted from this post at Things Going Round & Round

Every election year when Democrats start to demagogue on the issue of Social Security and "Mediscare" I find myself fuming at the political process. It could be that I'm not keen on having to listen to the federally financed elderly insurance programs for dummies rhetoric.

More likely, it's the absolute audacity of Democrats gaming the issue to scare old people. It's maddening, but what's worse is this campaign strategy seems to work on a few voters every election. The Democrat's nominee for the 1st Congressional district Bruce Braley was given the honor of collecting an extensive amount of free publicity with his turn at the Democratic Response to the President.

He used the opportunity to push the Democrats gloom & doom on the Republicans' plan for Social Security, and he did so without offering a single new idea to head off the looming funding crisis in entitlement programs.

Blog for Iowa: Iowans for Voting Integrity July Update:

Excerpted from this post at Blog for Iowa

This is from a new group with great analysis of the Pottawatamie voting problem. You can check them out in the future at later this month.

Lessons from the Pottawattamie Election!

The primary election last June 6 has come and gone, but it should not be forgotten. A problem that has marred elections across the United States came to Pottawattamie County, and offered our state an unforgettable lesson in the need for verifiable and auditable elections. On election night, as county election workers watched absentee ballots tabulate, they noticed odd results in the race for County Recorder.

John Sciortino, the popular incumbent of 23 years, was losing to a 19-year-old college student named Oscar Duran. Auditor Marilyn Jo Drake quickly suspected something amiss, and ordered a manual check of the paper ballots.

Her suspicion proved correct: the ballot scanners had not been programmed to recognize that in different precincts the paper ballots rotated the candidates' positions. Ballot rotation is a measure commonly used to reduce the chance of voter fraud.

Friday, July 07, 2006

Century of the Common Iowan: Iowa is Getting Invaded

Excerpted from this post at Century of the Common Iowan

2008 Presidential hopefuls are coming out in full force and visiting Iowa. The Register has the story here and includes information about Vilsack campaigning in his own state on a "Promises Kept" tour.

This weekend will see Evan Bayh (check Nicolai's post about Bayh) and John Edwards here.

Mark Warner will be heading here next week and I am once again hearing rumors about Russ Feingold coming to Iowa this month.

Joe Biden plans on moving to Iowa for 2 weeks in August. I hope to be able to get out and live blog a couple of the events.

Iowa Voice: Lieberman Vs. Lamont: Debate Time!

Excerpted from this post at Iowa Voice

Kos and his friends have GOT to be mashing their heads against a wall after this fiasco. Outside the Beltway liveblogged it, and Hot Air has a rather lengthy video clip.

From what I saw, Lieberman took it to Lamont pretty hard. Especially when he points out that Lamont is a one issue candidate, and that Lamont was supportive of Lieberman in the past...even though Joe's position hasn't changed.

Newsweek has an article up (haven't read it yet), while MSNBC has a reaction from the Kos kids, and an article here...along with a poll that will obviously be "freeped".

**Update**: Did I call that, or what? The Kos kids have been very busy, with 13567 responses, 79% say Joe lost. Uhm....riiiiiighhht. I wonder what color the sky is in their world?

Thursday, July 06, 2006

Century of the Common Iowan: Gingrich Challenged Edwards to Debate Poverty

Excerpted from this post at Century of the Common Iowan

Edwards response...

"People worried about feeding their children don't need politicians shooting their mouths off at partisan political events who didn't do anything significant about poverty when they had the chance," Edwards spokeswoman Kim Rubey said in a statement.

Iowa's First: Who's Coming to Eastern Iowa?

Excerpted from this post at Iowa's First

As mentioned on this blog before, Mike Whalen will be bringing VP Cheney to Davenport for a fundraiser. Cost of attending this event for the candidate worth $100 million is a wallet-busting $500 per person. Or, you can spend $1000 and get your picture taken with the Vice President.

This event will be July 17th. Also scheduled to stump for Whalen in a small-time fundraiser in Black Hawk County is 2008 hopeful Sen. John McCain. McCain will be in town on July 14th, and cost for this event is only $25. For the Democrats, 2008 hopeful Sen. Evan Bayh will be in Clinton and the QC stumping for several Dem. candidates.

In Clinton, at 5:15 on Friday, he will be bashing the President (read the first paragraph of this article and you'll see what I mean) on behalf of Rep. Polly Bukta and Sen. Roger Stewart.

Both incumbents have a battle on their hands with two good GOP challengers, and bringing Bayh in signifies that the Dems are having to fight to keep both these seats. Stewart's challenger, Clinton Mayor LaMetta Wynn, was the beneficiary of a stop by Gov. Pataki earlier this year.

While in Eastern Iowa, Bayh will also be rallying the troops for Bruce Braley at an event in Davenport. This gathering will take place at the Scott County Democrat HQ at 7:30 PM on Friday.

Political Forecast: Harkin critical of DNC plan to place events between Iowa and New Hampshire

Excerpted from this post at Political Forecast

I neglected to post this on Sunday, but it is worth reading now. I think Harkin, more than anyone else in Iowa, recognizes how meaningless the Iowa Caucuses can become when certain political events happen (like running for President yourself) and how New Hampshire CAN help balance things out (such as Harkin's massive and easy win in Iowa versus a 4th place showing in NH).

Your thoughts?

Mike Schramm
Andy Szal

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