Friday, March 16, 2012

District Of The Day Reboot: Iowa Senate District 13, Iowa House District 25 & 26

Senate District 13
Registration: D 13570, R 14964, N 15293, total 43860, R +1394
Incumbent: Kent Sorenson, R-Indianola; holdover seat

It's been quite a ride for Kent: knocked off an incumbent in 2008, knocked off another incumbent in 2010, and national attention in the closing hours of 2011. So what are the back home electoral consequences of that last-second DolchstoƟ of Michele Bachman? We won't know till 2014, as Sorenson holds over.

The district is remarkably unchanged from old Senate 37. It sheds a small bit of Dallas County and the city of Cumming in Warren (thus sparing Tom Harkin the indignity of being in Sorenson's district) and keeps all the rest of Warren and all of Madison County. This swingy south suburban turf has been a revolving door for legislators for over a decade, and is certain to be closely fought in the battle of Boswell-Latham, in the two House races, and in two years when Sorenson is up.

Campaign finance reports: Sorenson for Statehouse

House District 25
Registration: D 6482, R 7966, N 7877, total 22340, R +1484
Incumbent: Julian Garrett, R-Indianola; primary challenge/rematch

Garrett's first run was a Senate bid in 2006, which he lost to Democrat Staci Appel (she in turn lost to Sorenson in 2010). When Jodi Tymeson Retired from the House in 2010, Garrett won a three-way primary with 44%, winning his Warren County part of the district and the Dallas part that's now gone, but losing Madison. Garrett then beat a late-starting Democrat with 64%.

That friends and neighbors primary split is relevant again. Former Madison County supervisor Joan Acela, who finished third overall in the 2010 primary but won Madison County, is running again. Tymeson was Madison County based; are there still hard feelings that Warren now has two reps but Madison has none? The new seat is about half Madison and half Warren; with the Dallas part gone the Warren parts grow. There are two separate chunks of Warren County: a chunk south of Indianola where Garrett lives, and a northern piece that includes Norwalk.

Norwalk is home for Democratic teacher Katie Routh, whose big claim to fame is her son, actor Brandon Routh. But will Superman's Mom be able to leap a Republican registration edge in a single bound?

Campaign finance reports: Garrett for Statehouse Committee (Both Acela and Routh announced after the January 19 report)

House District 26
Registration: D 7088, R 6998, N 7416, total 21520, D +90
Open seat; Glen Massie, R-Des Moines retiring. Contested Republican primary.

Even during his first session, there were rumors that Massie was looking at not running. And without any sort of visible announcement that I could find, he just sort of didn't show up to file for re-election.

It wasn't a complete surprise because two Republicans had already filed: Carlisle mayor Ruth Randleman and Warren County GOP "co-chair" (sic) Steve McCoy. I have never yet been able to figure out why Iowa Republicans call their number two officer "co-chair."

Whichever one wins the primary faces Democrat Scott Ourth, who lost 53-47 to Massie but probably would have won in any year other than 2010. Scott Ourth for State Representative broke all sorts of fundraising records for a first time candidate, never really stopped running, and had $29,039 cash on hand on this year's January 19 report.

The new lines and the presidential cycle make this a little friendlier district for Ourth than old district 74. It sheds Norwalk to the west into Garrett's district, and gains east and south Warren territory in return.

Original post 5/11/2011 Statewide Map: Front | Back (with City Insets) | Old Senate, House

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