Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Random Impressions

Random Impressions

An extremely late night for me and a normal early morning today. I will eventually crunch the numbers.

The clock ran out on Mike Blouin who seems to have been rapidly closing the gap. Don't know anything about the rest of the state but he won here with Fallon in second. Ed's 26% statewide way exceeds expectations and gives him options for the future.

I got three phone calls yesterday urging me to vote for Mike and not one from Chet. I hope Culver adapts and starts to do the field work that the state's most successful Dems - Harkin and Vilsack - do so well.

Speaking of Vilsack, the nationals will see this as a serious dent. If they look closer, they'll also note that the candidate he formally endorsed, Dusky Terry, also lost. Denise O'Brien is the surprise winner of the night. Dusky was on the fast track and probably slated for governor in the future, but he was close enough and is young enough that he can regroup. As for Vilsack, he whipped out a "congrats Chet" statement almost immediately and can recover from this bump... IF Culver wins. A Nussle win would be serious damage to Vilsack. Well, and to Iowa, too.

Big Winner (Other than Chet): Mike Mauro. Instead of nominating Dopf, the Justice Department lawyer, the GOP went with Allison, setting up a Secretary of State race between the auditor of the biggest county in the state and... a foot doctor.

Maggie Tinsman gets knocked off. Bad news for GOP moderates and a sign of the party's direction.

Johnson County smashes the Dems turnout record with just over 11,000. Don't Tread On Me appears to have played well in Iowa City as Larry Meyers is a close second to Stutsman and Mike Lehman is the first Board incumbent to lose since 1996. To beat an incumbent you need a symbol, a handle for voters to grasp. Ten years ago it was a controversial appointment to a board. John Schneider rides the coattails and is last ut not by much.

Janet Lyness wins almost everything except a couple student precints and, oddly, Swisher (I heard Nick Maybanks did some serious doorknocking up there). She even won in the Don't Tread On Me precincts where Maybanks had some anti-incumbent support, though her margin was smaller (55% in Newport).

Nick Maybanks was a better candidate than his 30% indicates. There was a longstanding deep respect for Janet within the party that was too much for him to overcome, and a deep vein of support the woman candidate as well (that helps here in Johnson County). But Nick played a big role in shaping the debate and Janet will be a better county attorney for it. (Maybe she should hire him away from Linn County!)

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