The Iowa Republican leads their story with Cedar Rapids wunderkind Christian Fong, but also floated some more trial balloons for downballot state candidates yesterday, including some great understatements:
In case coming off two losses in a row is a bad way to start a statewide race, the mentioners also mention Matt Schultz of the Council Bluffs council.
Either way it's a tough race. Dems have held the office almost continuously since 1986, except for the four year Paul Pate interregnum. The last three people in the job seem to have used it mainly as a stepping stone: Elaine Baxter for two congressional bids and Pate and Culver for governor. But for Mike Mauro, who came out of an elections background as Polk County auditor, it seems to be the dream job. The 2008 general election went down with much less strife in Iowa than 2000 and 2004, though in fairness Culver's two presidentials were much closer than Mauro's first.
Neither Reed nor Rathje ran great campaigns the last time around but with a smaller geographic to cover, we’ll hopefully see a more intense primary. If the fundraising isn’t better this time around, we’ll have a repeat performance. Benchmarks by both men need to be set and met before they are seriously looked at as candidates.
IR also throws the names Teahen and Miller-Meeks out there. MMM has a bit higher profile, blogging semi-regularly. She's also been mentioned for state senate, but the "Doctor's Notes" are focused on federal issues. The name Loebsack appears nowhere.
My bet is that the doctor keeps her name out there, but sits out 2010 and waits to see the map in 2011.
So that brings guns into the mix -- an issue on which Boswell has always leaned rightwards.