Monday, December 30, 2013

The last couple o' weeks in review

I've gotten pretty sloppy with this feature, and writing in general, the last two weeks. Chalk it up to the mandatory political break of the holidays. Right before the break I speculated that lots of serious discussions with families would be happening that will impact Iowa's suddenly reconfigured governor and 3rd CD races.

Your inbox, like mine, is no doubt rapidly filling up with last-second pleas from federal candidates before tomorrow night's quarterly federal finance filing deadline. The actual reports aren't due till the 15th but by weeks end candidates who think they've had good quarters will be bragging. But silence speaks louder and this may be the moment some of that crowded Republican Senate fields reconsiders that 3rd CD race.

Brad Zaun seems to be calling dibs on that one, though I don't see losing to chronic under-performer Leonard Boswell in the best Republican year in two decades as a resume bullet point.

The rumour mill also seems to include every mid-term central Iowa GOP senator, and of course Matt Schultz. If he runs for something other than Secretary of State, he has to talk about something other than photo ID and I don't know if he is able. I repeat: that signature issue serves him best in the race for his current job.

Republican Mark LeRette dropped out of the crowded House 91race in Muscatine but offered some good GOTV advice:
Which would be good, if the Johnson County Hy-Vees hadn't kicked early voting out of their stores this year.

This might solve the problem of more candidates than seats: do our congressional districts have too many people? Apparently there's a rule of thumb that the ideal size of a legislative body is the cube root of the population. That'd give us a US House of 675 members and Iowa would at least gain the 5th CD back. The Iowa House would have 143 which isn't so far off the House plus Senate total of 150.

Late entry in Tweet Of The Year contest:
But loses points for not using the Chuck Grassley Assume Deer Dead format.

Here's something that would never ever ever happen in Johnson County politics:
I briefly used a pen name in grad school on advice of advisers. My campus only had about nine TAs and our very existence was mildly controversial. But I've always been a strong believer in putting your real name on stuff, which I've done since 1990. I still think so even though I was in a situation - a boss with a reputation for retaliation - where anonymity would have been useful.

Speaking of grad school, among the reasons I dropped out: "One sentence summaries of years of academic work, by that work's author."

And Johnson County journalism loses one of its best as Adam Sullivan is moving from the PC to a new job as communications coordinator at the Crisis Center. Congrats and don't lose your voice.

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