Monday, March 03, 2014

Upcoming events: March 2-9

Centuries from now, when all but the greatest political leaders are forgotten, people will still learn the name Jane Goodall. The woman who redefined "human" will be at Carver-Hawkeye a week from today to discuss her work with our chimpanzee relatives and her conservation efforts. A can't miss.

In the small political world where I live: State and federal filing continues all this week, and starting today courthouse candidates can also file.

Both parties hold county conventions Saturday. The same date thing isn't critical like it is with caucuses, because anyone can caucus, and can caucus twice, if the dates are different, but at a convention you have to be elected. To me the same convention date is too bad because I have gone to a few Republican conventions to catch the speeches and just generally see how they operate.

And they operate very differently. The dustup this past weekend was on the Republican practice of electing a large chunk of their delegates to the next level as a slate. More to the point, the issue was who's making the slate. Craig Robinson, Shane Vander Hart and David Chung have write-ups but the tl;dr read is this is a Branstad Wing vs. Vander Plaats and Paul wings fight.

I've never seen a formal "slating" process at Democratic conventions, at least not in my county or at district/state. Everyone runs and is elected as an individual, so any "slating" is informal. Also, only X number of delegates, I believe half, can get elected on the first round. And In contested presidential years people are elected out of preference groups, so the Ron Paul vs Non Paul dynamic of the 2012 Republican cycle can't happen on the Democratic side. 

Whichever convention you attend, stop by beforehand for the Crisis Center of Johnson County annual pancake breakfast, hosted by Our Redeemer Lutheran Church, 2301 Court Street in Iowa City. $6 for adults and $3 for children at the door gets you unlimited pancakes, toppings, sausage, and beverages. The 7 AM start gives you two hours before the conventions start, and it runs till 1.

The party central committees also meet this week. Republicans get together Monday at their default meeting spot, the Miller Learning Center on South Keokuk. Matt Whitaker and Sam Clovis are expected to attend.

Democrats meet Thursday at the Iowa City School District office and elect a new chair. Interim chair Gerene Denning is expected to step up to finish the term of Mike Carberry, who resigned to run for supervisor.

Josh Ruebner — the national advocacy director of the U.S. Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation — will be speaking at 7 p.m. Monday in the Coralville Public Library on his new book, “Shattered Hopes: Obama’s Failure to Broker Israeli-Palestinian Peace.”

"Miss Representation," a documentary film about gender, stereotypes and its effects on women and men, girls and boys in the United States, will be screened at 2 p.m. Sunday at the Englert, with proceeds benefiting Scattergood Friends School.

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