Thursday, February 23, 2012

Democrat Routh Running in House 25

By now the sorts of people who read Iowa political blogs are all cued in to the fact that new Democratic House candidate Katie Routh has a famous son, right? Since that's taken care of let's look at the district.

House 25 keeps Madison County intact, and that's just over 50% of the population. The other half is two separate chunks of Warren County. The biggest change is the addition of a northern piece that includes Routh's base in Norwalk. There's also a reconfigured a southern rural piece that skirts south of Indianola. That's where first term GOP incumbent Julian Garrett lives.

Garrett lost a close 2006 Senate race to Democrat Staci Appel, then came back in 2010 to take this House seat over a late-starting Democrat when longtime Republican Rep. Jodi Tymeson retired.

The new turf has a post-caucus GOP registration edge of about 1500, up about 500 from the Map Day numbers. (The GOP registration totals are puffed about as high as they're going to get right now; insert my standard disclaimers that the trend simply indicate which party has had the most interesting recent internal contest.) So, uphill for Democrats, but worth a serious effort.

Other legislative contest news:

  • Bleeding Heartland looks at the House 56 contest in the northeast corner between GOP freshman Bob Hager and Democrat Patti Ruff.

  • Now THIS is how re-election announcements should be done:
    State Rep. Mark Lofgren said he doesn’t need to call a press conference to announce he’s running for re-election this fall.

    “Consider this my formal announcement,” the freshman legislator said by telephone from the state Capitol late Wednesday afternoon.

    Lofgren, R-Muscatine, has so far drawn one opponent for the November election — Democrat John Dabeet, a professor of economics and statistics at Muscatine Community College.
    None of this announcing that I'm going to announce dog and pony show, no Formal Announcement several months after the first story or, even worse, after the candidate has filed to get on the ballot.
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