Tuesday, August 07, 2012

Shannon Chair Nominated in SD34

As expected - since no one else had thrown their hat in the ring - Linn County Republicans in Senate District 34 replaced neo-secessionist Randi-Kaye: Shannon on the ballot with her former campaign chair, Ryan Flood.

Shannon withdrew from the race against Senator Liz Mathis last month and announced she had been "selected" as "united States Senator in the Republic of the united States of America."

Flood, most recently reported as living and working in Texas, plead ignorance last night, telling Kevin Hall of TheIowaRepublican:
“I actually didn’t really know about that until it was on the news,” Flood said. “I was down in Texas and she asked me to come up and help her out. I knew she was trying to get some paperwork done at the last second, so it doesn’t surprise me that she put me on there.”
Though the district has a Republican registration advantage, "a victory by Flood in November is highly unlikely," Hall writes."There are well known Republicans in Senate District 34 who could have given Mathis a decent challenge this year. Despite efforts to recruit other candidates, both before the June primary and after Shannon’s mind-boggling departure, no one other than Ryan Flood was interested in the seat."

But at least  he's another Ron Paul/Campaign for Liberty type, which should make A.J. Spiker and the crowd running the state central committee happy. The GOP can also go back to bragging about having a candidate on the ballot in all 26 Senate races. (Democrats have left four Senate seats, all heavily Republican, unchallenged.)

Mathis, for her part, spent yesterday in Black Hawk County campaigning with Senate colleague Jeff Danielson. The newest legislator is a popular fund-raiser guest for other candidates, and she shouldn't have to slow down much on that as she swats away this challenge.

In the night's other convention, also in Linn County, Republicans picked business owner Lance Lefebure to challenge Rep. Todd Taylor in solidly Democratic House District 70. In contrast to Flood, Lefebure has left few political footprints and on paper looks like he might have been a decent candidate for a more rural district. His business produces high-end GPS equipment designed for ag use. Taylor's turf stretches out into the county, to Fairfax, for the first time, but is still essentially an urban Cedar Rapids seat.

Republicans have two more conventions scheduled this week. Thursday they meet in House District 90. No name has emerged to oppose incumbent Cindy Winckler, D-Davenport. Friday the GOP is expected to nominate Jim Steffen to oppose Rep. Jerry Kearns, D- Ft. Madison. Both seats are heavily Democratic.

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