Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Well, they finally got somebody

Well, they finally got somebody

Register reports this AM on last night's nomination:

The Iowa GOP looked to the White House on Monday night in picking a replacement candidate for Iowa secretary of state after their previous one dropped out last month.

Iowa Republicans named Mary Ann Hanusa, 43, as their candidate. Hanusa lives in suburban Washington, D.C., and handles President Bush's personal correspondence.

Although several names had been floated in recent weeks, Hanusa was the only person considered Monday night, Sheehan said.

Sheehan said Hanusa will be moving or already has moved back to Iowa.

Jane Norman mentioned her in late 2002 in an artice on Iowans working in the White House:

Hanusa helps the president field letters from family members and personal friends... and worked in correspondence for the president's father during his administration.

A DOUBLE Bush connection - JUST what the Republicans need. Although a quick googling indicates she was a Grassley staffer from 1996 to 2001. I'm thinking she'll emphasize that connection more.

Norman also noted Hanusa headed up the Bush campaign effort in Pottawattamie County. So that's some experience (from the other end of the process) in elections. Not the kind of official experience as, oh, being the auditor of the largest county in Iowa...

This was in the Council Bluffs Nonpareil Friday but I missed it, along with nearly everyone else. Hawkeye GOP had it, and commentator Iowa Guy at Political Forecast mentioned Hanusa and one other.

Hanusa, who is back in Council Bluffs for a few days, has been in contact with members of the state central committee getting her name across, she said.

"Granted, I'm a new face, but I've just been asking them for their consideration for me, and none of them have said, 'No, I won't vote for you,' which is good," Hanusa said.

That's strong praise. Nothing at all on her stand on issues - especially vote suppression - or actual relevant experience. The Democrats have literally the most qualified candidate possible in Mike Mauro and the Republicans blew their opportunity in this open seat race. If the eight or so other names mentioned had thought this was a winnable race, they'd have stayed in. I'm guessing the GOP is calling fourth down and long yardage on this race, and playing for field position:

  • Any minimal name ID she has is in western Iowa and Hanusa helps hold the base and get out the vote for Nussle.

  • Hanusa makes a credible losing race as an unknown and runs for something else later. That worked in Council Bluffs for Paul Shomshor - crushed by Steve King in a 2002 no-chance race, elected to the state House in an August `03 special. I'm guessing Hanusa will go house shopping in Mike Gronstal's district.

    Aside: I've been looking for ages but I can't find the worst downs-yardage situation in NFL history. I remember reading that the 60's Packers once had the Cleveland Browns at a 4th down and 52, but I can't document it.
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