Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Iowa City Set For A Primary

Iowa City Set For A Primary

For the tenth straight city election cycle, it looks like Iowa City is having a primary.

Long-announced at large candidate Josh Eklow filed his papers today, becoming the fifth official candidate in the at large race. Assuming no one drops out, that means a primary October 11 with the top four advancing to November 8.

The last city election year Iowa City avoided a primary was 1991, and there was an extra election that fall anyway (an Iowa City school district bond). More ancient history here.

The last two primaries, in 2007 and 2009, were low turnout affairs to eliminate one candidate, and 2005 was similar (six names on the ballot but one guy had dropped out after the dropout deadline). So the last city primary with a big field of candidates was 2003. That was also the only time an incumbent, Irv Pfab in the District C race, lost a primary.

If I was rewriting a city charter, this wouldn't be my number one change, but one advantage to a runoff over a primary is that in a field with a prohibitive favorite who could win an outright majority in round one, you could save the cost of the second election. But then again, Rick Dobyns ran first in the 2005 primary but lost in November, so maybe the primary does have its advantages.

Everyone seems to love my post from this morning but since I touched on about five issues I can't tell which part gets the love. Have to assume it's "da Bears still suck" part.

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