Joni Ernst's long rumored now official entry into the US Senate race probably completes the field of serious Republican contenders in that race. (Of course, it's possible to win a GOP primary - or convention? - without being serious.)
It also puts more pressure on Democrats to nominate a female candidate for one of the top-tier congressional races. It's impossible to overstate just how big a deal it is to Democratic
activists that Iowa is alone with Mississippi - MISSISSIPPI! - in having
never elected a female governor or member of Congress. And it would
make us absolutely bonkers if Iowa finally broke that barrier with a
Republican. And the best bet for a Democratic woman is in the 1st CD, and of the three women in that race you know which one I'd like to see get it.
In response, another old white guy, Cedar Rapids attorney Dave O’Brien, got into the Democratic race in the 1st CD. He ran a long-ago race in the 6th CD - yes, two more districts than we have now - losing to Gopher Grandy in `88. The press release email came to me from a Link Strategies email address, usually a sign that the campaign won't be a shoestring operation.
Anyone else notice how Bruce Braley instantly and effectively united the party and cleared the field? Compared to, pic a name at random Pat Murphy, who's seen FOUR rivals jump in now since he announced?
Also note that if everyone follows through in the 1st, you're looking at three Linn County candidates, one from Dubuque, and one from Black Hawk.
While we're at it with the Ernst announcement, there was kvetching in the Twittersphere and what's left of the blogosphere about the Democratic Party being "too negative" toward the GOP candidates when a press release labeled her "establishment approved." Complaints about negative campaigning have existed since Ogg and Ugg ran against each other for chief of the Unfrozen Caveman Lawyer tribe in One Million BC: "Ugg? More like Ugg-Ly. Me Ogg, me approve this message."
You know what would stop negativity? If it stopped working.