Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Bad News and Good News

Bad News and Good News

It's hard to make lemonade out of the latest managerial change on the Culver campaign (desmoinesdem plays the Spinal Tap drummer card), but there's at least some mixed news out there for Iowa Dems,

  • Lynda Waddington asks if enthusiasm is lagging here in the People's Republic and notes the 21 bar vote:
    It is possible that the students could once again show up, but only to vote on the one issue on which they have been educated. If that isn’t the case, however, most believe that higher participation by young voters benefits Democrats.
    I'm still hoping young voters take the rare chance to get the drinking age issue itself on the table, but then that's me and only me. Lynda also raised the possibility that at least us lefties may have Bob Vander Plaats to vote against, which leads me to...

  • Craig Robinson's dissection of the anti-Branstad mood among the theocratic right: "The Iowa Family Policy Center hates Terry Branstad, largely because of who is supporting his candidacy, rather than the positions he advocates for on the campaign trail."

    I'm not sure how much salience that has with conservative voters who aren't versed in the arcana of Iowa GOP politics. Or, more simply, it's Terry on the ballot, not Doug Gross. Still, if the GOP wants to fight among itself, go ahead. It gives Culver an easier opponent: either a Branstad weakened by intra-party attacks and by Christian Soldiers sitting it out... or he draws the unelectable BVP and his unconstitutional Governor By Decree platform.

  • And Kos himself mentions the Iowa Senate race as one on the outer edge of possibility:
    There will be tough contested Senate races in many of those states -- Reid's Nevada, of course, but also California, Colorado, Illinois, Florida, North Carolina, and maybe even Iowa, Washington, and Arizona. Meanwhile, we'll have hot governor races races in California, Iowa, Texas, Illinois, Georgia, New Mexico, and Florida.
    "Maybe even" is as vulnerable as Grassley has been in three decades. And as I noted Saturday in a Register post, the upcoming Supreme Court nomination puts Grassley on the hot seat as he's forced to be a national GOP face again. To quote myself:
    Complicating matters a bit more, early speculation indicates that President Obama is likely to again name a woman to the vacancy. Supporters of Grassley’s likely opponent, Roxanne Conlin, are already talking about the “Iowa-Mississippi club” (the only two states never to elect a woman to high office). So there’s that, plus Conlin’s years of legal practice vs. Grassley’s non-lawyer role on Judiciary.
  • Speaking of the Court, Politico makes the case for a justice with an electoral background. The last one was Sandra Day O'Connor, whose highest office was leader of the Arizona State Senate. A far cry from past Chief Justices like Charles Evans Hughes (a former New York governor who resigned as an Associate Justice to accept the 1916 GOP presidential nomination, then later returned as Chief Justice), Earl Warren (sitting governor of California and only one election cycle removed from a vice presidential nomination), and the ultimate, former President William Howard Taft.

    Side note: I've been spending less time writing the past few days and more time on The Smallest Farm. Better for me, if not for site traffic. I need a nice rainy writing day...
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