Friday, August 17, 2012

District Of The Day 3: Iowa Senate District 14, Iowa House District 27 & 28

Senate District 14
Registration: D 10737, R 13327, N 12873, total 36963, R +2590
Open Seat; Paul McKinley, R-Chariton, retiring.

Sure, the leadership challenge ahead of the anticipated loss in the Marion special senate election last year probably played the biggest role in Paul McKinley's retirement. But it's worth noting that on Map Day, he went from a 3844 Republican registration edge to a much more swingy 622. Caucus and primary activity has boosted Republican rolls, but we're still talking about a much less Republican seat than the old one.

The new seat includes four whole counties - Clarke, Lucas, Decatur and Wayne - plus most of Mahaska, with the exception of Pella. It also has a chunk of southern Jasper County.

Both parties saw enough opportunity to draw contested primaries, and both primaries were landslides. In the Republican side, Wayne County supervisor Amy Sinclair was way ahead of Steven Everly of Knoxville, 66-28%. A third candidate, Stephanie Jones of Knoxville, drew attention mainly for an arrest shortly after filing, and won less than 7%.

Democrat Dick Schrad, the former Knoxville City Manager, was a two to one primary winner over 2008 House loser James Demichelis.

July 19 Campaign Finance Report: Dick Schrad for Senate, Sinclair for Iowa Both candidates are deficit spending. Schrad had $2,201.41 on hand with a little more than that, $2,458.73, in loans outstanding. Sinclair has more on hand, $4,294.73, but has $8100 in loans out.

House District 27
Registration: D 5329, R 6313, N 6345, total 18004, R +984
Incumbent: Joel Fry, R-Osceola, no Democratic candidate

 Fry knocked off Democrat Mike Reasoner with a solid 57% win in one of 2010's bigger upsets. Reasoner was from Creston, in Union County, which is now out of the district.  The district keeps Decatur and Fry's home County, Clarke. It adds Wayne County and most of Lucas County including Chariton.

Fry drew a nuisance primary challenge from James Demichelis, Junior., not to be confused with the Democrat in the Senate race. Father and son Some Dudes of different parties. Fry easily won 86-14%.

This is the most Democratic seat that the Democrats left officially uncontested, number 60 on the depth chart. But there's kinda sorta a Democrat in the race: Ruth Smith of Lamoni filed as an independent on the last day of filing. Smith ran for the Senate twice as a Democrat, losing to Kim Reynolds in 2008 and to Joni Ernst in the 2011 special when Reynolds became lieutenant governor.

July 19 Campaign Finance Report: Fry for Iowa House

House District 28
Registration: D 5408, R 7014, N 6528, total 18959, R +1606
Open Seat; Rich Arnold, R-Russell, retiring.

It's a culture clash race, as home birth meets home school.

Republican Greg Heartsill, a "homeschool(er) with nine children," outraised Christian bookstore owner Len Gosseling by several orders of magnitude, and outpolled him 76-24% in the primary. He faces Democrat Megan Suhr in the fall. She's a doula, which is a birth coach and assisant.

Rich Arnold has held the seat since 1994, winning comfortably in recent years. The line changes cost the seat about 1000 Republicans and turn a good GOP district into a swing seat. Lucas County gets split for the first time since Iowa started Clean Redistricting (TM) in 1981, and with Chariton going west to Fry's district, this seat has the smaller, eastern part. The chunk of Marion County expands, to take in Knoxville and almost the whole county (but not Pella), and adds part of southern Jasper.

July 19 Campaign Finance Report: Heartsill for Iowa, Megan Suhr for Iowa It looks like Heartsill is starting to spend. He took in $5,764.50 post-primary but spent $7,075.65, for an on hand balance of $1,533.36. Suhr has $3,284.98. Or "had"; as I write the July 19 reports are a month old and no one but the insiders will know more until October.

Senate District 14, House District 27 & 28: District of the Day 1 - 5/12/2011 | District of the Day 2 - 3/16/2012

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