The ex-TV anchor was a star recruit for Iowa Democrats when Terry Branstad rolled the dice for a shot at a tied Senate last year. The GOP helped by nominating party activist and former defeated candidate Cindy Golding over two stronger contenders (one of whom Branstad had recruited), but Mathis and the Dems left nothing to chance and worked hard for a solid win.
But that was just for the last session of Swati Dandekar's term, so Mathis has to run again this year (on revised, more favorable turf.) The only Republican to file last March was Randi Shannon, who at first glance seemed to be just a garden variety, tea party Ron Paul type.
But it seems there was a lot more crazy to Shannon than we thought. She dropped out of the race Friday because she, um.... got a better offer?
Therefore, in order to affect the most good on behalf of The People of Iowa’s 34th District and in keeping with my conscience, I have accepted the position of U.S. Senator in The Republic of The United States of America, where I may better serve You and All of The People of Iowa. I want you to know I have taken an Oath to Uphold, Support and Defend The Constitution of The United States of America. This I will do to the best of my ability, So Help Me God.Yeah. And I'm the sheriff of Aspen, Colorado. But wait! There's Legal Reasoning, or at least a bunch of words on paper:
Let me now announce to everyone in Iowa, I have become aware of the existence of the Original Republic for The United States of America.“We the People” re-inhabited our lawful de jure (de jur- “by right of lawful establishment”) government on March 30th, 2010. This is The Republic founded in 1787 and then abandoned during The Civil War in the 1860s. It was then replaced in 1871 by the UNITED STATES CORPORATION. (de facto-without law). This Unlawful Corporate Democracy, established by the forty-first congress, has been acting as though it is the “official government” which clearly it is not! In point of fact, it is the reason why “We the People” Instead of Experiencing Freedom and Prosperity, suffer under the weight of Oppressive Statutes and an Out of Control, Monstrous National Debt which is Robbing Us and All Future Generations of Americans of Our Treasure and Our Legacy for which Our Founding Fathers’ so Valiantly Fought and Died. And Remember This! Where the de jure Republic of The United States of America exists the de facto UNITED STATES CORPORATION, having no standing, must go away!
Now, knowing this, and with the best interests of The People of Iowa District 34 uppermost in my heart and out of respect for my own conscience, I am here to announce that I am ending my campaign as of this July 4th, 2012. Trust me this story does not end here nor does my commitment. In fact, my level of service to the good people of Iowa who have been so supportive of me and my campaign will be greatly increased. Please allow me to continue, because I have some great news to share with all of you!Nope never had this one pegged as a full-blown "sovereign citizen" militia type. And an obscure branch of said movement, yet. This dropout may be the biggest news coverage the "Republic of the United States of America" has ever gotten.
Iowa's political and journalism community is trying really hard to deal with Shannon's "promotion" while keeping a straight face. All this makes for the funniest political story since... oh, I guess Thaddeus McCotter only resigned last week but still pretty funny.
The funniest thing is that, on paper, this actually HELPS the Republicans by allowing then to nominate a less crazy candidate before the August 17 deadline. But before they can do that, Shannon has to notify the Secretary of State of the actual Iowa government that she's quitting. But... wouldn't that mean she's recognizing the state? Help, I'm caught in a Mobius strip of legal illogic here.
But whoever Linn County Republicans do pick gets a late start. Golding doesn't live in the new district, a point that was an issue in last year's special. And if one of the other serious Republicans had thought they stood a chance against Mathis, they would have filed in March and easily dispatched Shannon in the primary.
Don't look for this race to move up the charts, though Republicans can at least be relieved that they're spared from further embarrassment from Shannon.