Thursday, January 02, 2014

Who's in, Who's Out

A fast moving news morning on the first business day of the election year. Must have been a lot of those heart to heart talks with families over the holidays like I expected.

Bob Krause is OUT for governor and IN for US Senate... US Senate 2016, that is. Krause endorsed Jack Hatch at a joint appearance and urged other potential candidates to steer clear of a primary. Hatch still faces opposition from Some Dude Paul Dahl, who in October told Johnson County Democrats that there were unspecified "skeletons" in Hatch's closet.

Krause only drew 13% in the 2010 Senate primary, a distant second to Roxanne Conlin, but has a high profile and decent credibility with party activists. As for the 2016 Senate races, Krause says if Chuck Grassley can announce this early, he may as well, too.

Republican David Young is OUT of the US Senate race and IN for the 3rd CD.

Ankeny Senator Jack Whitver is OUT for the 3rd CD, and IN for the Senate whip GOP post that Rick Bertrand vacated to focus on a possibly challenging re-election race in Sioux City.

Chris Hagenow is also OUT for the congressional race and probably IN for a future bid for House speaker - or maybe minority leader...

Most interesting, Matt Schultz tells his friends:
I have received a lot of support and encouragement as I have considered becoming a candidate for Iowa’s 3rd Congressional District. Next week, I will be making an important and exciting announcement about this race and my future plans to fight for Iowa.
That sounds like either an IN or a really exploitive tease for a re-election (non)-announcement. Though GOP activist Vinita Smith quickly replied:  "Please stay right where you are--we need you there."

Which illustrates the issue going forward for Schultz. I've seen him at a few GOP events and he's clearly a hero to the base on his signature issue, photo ID and "ballot integrity" (sic). But he also focuses on ID to the exclusion of almost everything else. That's OK for a narrowly focused job like Secretary of State, but how does that translate to the national, even global scope of a congressional race? Can't wait for the debates. Mr. Schultz, explain your position on the farm bill. "Voter ID." Should we intervene in Syria? "Voter ID."

My take is Schultz deeply believes that voter ID is why he got elected. The more likely reality is that he rode the wave of the best Republican year in two decades to knock off an incumbent. Still: that's more than Brad Zaun accomplished...

The big winner if/when Schultz announces? Brad Anderson. The Democrat has been up and running for Scretary of State for months and anticipating a well-known opponent. Now it's an open seat.  Does the GOP have a bench in this race?

Speaking of people who should be on the bench, Chicago Bears quarterback Jay Cutler is IN with a new seven year contract, which apparently you earn by being OUT of the playoffs.. The big winner? Us Packer fans.

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