Bleeding Heartland has a much better on-the-ground analysis of Des Moines area local elections than I did: "If Griess becomes a rising Republican star, just remember that it could have been avoided if some people had talked Vlassis into retiring."
Aside: Only six cities in the state have Iowa City style primaries; more of the larger cities have runoffs. If Iowa City had a runoff, we could occasionally save ourselves one election; this year Dickens and Mims would have won outright the first round. Of course, that's not the reform I'd make to Iowa City elections (remember, I want precinct-sized districts so students will get represented) but it's worth mentioning.
Up in Waverly, former state senator Bob Brunkhorst is now mayor.
And over at Iowa Republican, Craig Robinson has a minimal-spin analysis of the state of All Things Culver:
Since Roos joined the campaign on September 8th, former Governor Terry Branstad entered the gubernatorial race, Culver was forced to make massive cuts to all levels of state government, the Culver campaign spent $250,000 on two different TV ads in an effort to reassure Iowans that he is up to the task, and the Des Moines Register’s Iowa poll came out showing Culver is in serious trouble. Making matters worse, last weekend, the Iowa Progress Project ran a scathing ad that blames Culver’s mismanagement for cuts made in education.
It’s impossible to lay the blame for this predicament at the feet of Roos since he has not been on the job long, but when things get bad in politics, heads begin to roll. The bad news for Culver is that things are unlikely to get better soon enough to help him with his re-election effort.
This is why Democrats have gone out of their way to take the focus off of Culver. The most significant example of this is the recruitment of Roxanne Conlin...
I'm also going to have to write my take on the demise of Mike Huckabee, but that'll probably be at the Register. Stay tuned.