Bly Announces in House 76
Democrats have another House recruit, this time in a must-win empty swing seat. Grinnell city council member Rachel Bly has announced in House 76.
Bly won her first council term in 2009. She has a ward seat, so she's only been elected out of the southwest quarter of the city (campus is the northeast). But that's still some name ID in the district's biggest city.
A complete Poweshiek County akes up 60% of the turf. Grinnell was the scene of epic legislative battles last decade. Democrat Eric Palmer and Republican Danny Carroll fought three straight contests; Carroll won the first in 2004, Palmer knocked him off in 2006 and thwarted the 2008 comeback. But in 2010 the wave swept out Palmer and replaced him with Guy Vander Linden.
The old Carroll-Palmer-Vander Linden district was in a Poweshiek-Mahaska format. Both Palmer and Vander Linden are from Mahaska, and this announcement likely means Osky-based Palmer won't be moving. Vander Linden is staying put to the south and running; his pair-up problem was resolved when Pella's Jim Van Engelenhoeven retired. Carroll was Grinnell-based, but got his votes in Mahaska.
About 40% of the seat is the bigger part of Iowa County: Williamsburg, North English, Victor, and most of the Amanas. Johnson County Dems take note: this one's literally an across the road neighbor. You can doorknock Williamsburg and shop at the outlet mall after. Swingy turf, but way friendlier for a Democrat than Oskaloosa.
The Iowa County part was represented by Keokuk County based Betty De Boef, who's paired up with Jarad Klein and hasn't announced plans other than NOT primarying Klein.
Overall the seat had a Map Day Democratic registration edge of 217, so right on the edge. Your move next, GOP.