Saturday, August 02, 2008

First Week's Filing

Slow First Week of Candidate Filing

Third party candidates must still be out getting their signatures. As the first week of filing ended, only one presidential ticket and two state legislative candidates had turned nomination petitions in to the Secretary of State's office.

The first presidential candidate to file in Iowa was Gloria LaRiva, representing the new Party of Socialism and Liberation (PSL).

Ron Gunzburger of the priceless resource Politics1 says the PSL was founded in 2006 by a breakaway faction of the communist revolutionary wing of the pro-Cuba/pro-China Workers World Party. LaRiva was the Workers World presidential nominee in 1992 and has been a frequent candidate for other offices since the 1980s.

The electoral impact of the left of the left of the left is well below the Mendoza line of scattered Mickey Mouse write-ins. Bill Van Auken of the Socialist Equality Party won 176 votes in Iowa out of 1.5 million cast in 2004. Yet every cycle, at least one of the Marxist parties manages to get the 1500 signatures to qualify for the Iowa ballot. Perhaps a signature is enough to make an aggressive newspaper seller go away.

With two weeks to go before the Aug. 15 deadline, Iowa's U.S. Senate and five congressional races are still, officially, two candidate, Democrat vs. Republican contests. Democratic primary loser William Meyers had not yet filed as an independnent in the 4th Congressional District, nor had independent Brian White or Green Wendy Barth in the 2nd District.

The Republicans and Democrats have not, as yet, filled any more of their gaps in the 36 state legislative races that remain uncontested by one of the major parties. However, two other legislative candidates have filed.

In Ottumwa, independent Rick McClure will challenge Democratic Rep. Mary Gaskill. "I am a true Independent. I am not sold out to either party or any special interests. Like a baseball umpire, I call 'em like I see 'em," McClure says on his MySpace page. He has two friends; Tom is not among them. Dan Cesar of Keosauqua filed in House District 90 as a candidate of the "4th of July Party." He'll face incumbent Democrat John Whitaker in the fall. There is no Republican candidate in either contest.

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