Is That… Yep, Steve King Has A Confederate Flag On His Desk

Iowa Republican Congressman Steve King appeared on a story on Sioux City’s KCAU TV this Friday, talking about the bill he introduced named “Sarah’s Law.” King explains how his law would change ICE deportation policies in honor of Sarah Root, a young woman killed by an undocumented immigrant while at… Wait, wait a second… What’s that on Steve King’s desk in that shot? Is that a Confederate flag? Yep, that’s what is, alright. Because of course it is. Of course it is. Yes, it appears King has a whole little collection of flags on the desk where he works on crafting the nation’s […]

New Iowa Registration Numbers Post-Primary And What They Mean

The Iowa Secretary of State’s office released this morning the updated registration totals for July, which are the first to show major shifts from the June 6 primary. Overall, Republicans saw the largest registration gain, adding 10,094 voters to their rolls while Democrats had 4,823 new registrants. No Party totals dropped by 9,499. Those top-lines are pretty good for Republicans, but lets take a deeper look to see why registration levels changed and where. As before with the early vote numbers, you can take a look at the spreadsheets I threw together if you want to play around with it […]

Sick Of Steve King’s Insanity? You Could Send A Tubman To His Opponent

Days Since Last Offensive Steve King Statement: 0 In a perfect example of the projection defense mechanism, Republican Congressman Steve King called the move to place Harriet Tubman on the $20 bill “racist” and “sexist.” King argued that it was divisive to put a woman of color on the currency, replacing President Andrew Jackson, because it was simply “liberal activism” by President Obama to divide people. Okay. It appears King believes that recognizing an inspiring historical figure like Tubman is a racist attack on white people, because she is black. Or something like that, it’s a little frightening to get into […]

Key Takeaways From The Iowa Primary Results

Iowans didn’t have to stay up too late last night to see who came out on top of the main primary races on both the Democratic and Republican side. For the most part things played out as people expected. Starting Line will spend part of the next week taking some dives into specific primary results and what it means for the general. For the moment, let’s take a look at some of the main takeaways from the night:   Hogg Keeps It Close, Has A Bright Future Things looked bleak for Rob Hogg when the Des Moines Register released a poll on […]

What To Watch For In Today’s Iowa Primaries

It’s primary day in Iowa! Polls are open until 9:00PM, and campaigns are going all-out today to get their identified supporters to the polls. What should Iowa politics watchers keep their eye on tonight? Starting Line has a few suggestions below. You can also watch myself and The Iowa Republican’s Craig Robinson do live commentary on the results tonight with the ABC 5/WOI team. We’ll be covering the results on The CW Channel (Channel 9 in Des Moines, I believe), then on Channel 5 during their 10:00 newscast. Make sure to tune in for some good, informed analysis!   Iowa Senate In […]

Another Look At Updated Early Vote Numbers For The Primary

With just two weeks left before Iowa’s primary elections on June 7, let’s take another look at the early vote totals across the state. A lot has changed since we first discussed the numbers three weeks ago. The Secretary of State’s office is posting these totals regularly now, so you can always go check yourself on their website. Also, here’s the useful list of candidates running. One caveat for the numbers I’m posting here – you’ll note that in some places the return rate of absentee ballots is very low. My guess in most of these cases is that those are areas […]

What Early Voting Numbers May Say About Iowa’s Primary Races

Early voting in Iowa’s June 7th primary has now been underway for a week. Iowans can vote in person at their county auditor’s office or by an absentee ballot at home. The number of those absentees are always a very interesting thing to track (especially to this former field staffer). It’s one of the only public numbers you can get that gives a neutral observer a look into the campaigns. They can tell you a lot about where the excitement is around the state for certain races and which campaigns may be well-organized, hitting the pavement to get requests and collect […]

It’s Time For Democrats To Vote Republican (In Steve King’s Primary)

Democrats in Western Iowa are used to voting against Steve King. They’ve done it year in and year out, always to no avail. It’s become a bit of a ritual: each campaign cycle a Democrat announces his or her candidacy and all the activists get excited that maybe this year will be the one that the despised King is finally sent packing. It never works. And then those Democrats have to go back to explaining to their friends how they live in Steve King country. But 2016 could be different. Because this year King faces something a little different: a […]

Iowa Already The Center Of The Political Universe Again

That didn’t take long. A mere seven weeks ago the TV satellite trucks and campaign headquarters packed up and headed out from Iowa following the caucus. As it happens every four years, the national spotlight flickers out on Iowa in the blink of an eye, with all the political staff and reporters that we’ve become friends with vanishing to now more-interesting states. Iowa doesn’t quite turn into a pumpkin, but we’re certainly not a fancy stagecoach anymore. But guess what? The political gods determined this couldn’t stand for long and have thrust Iowa back into center stage. As is only […]

Rick Bertrand Looking At Bid To Primary Steve King

It appears Steve King made one too many enemies during the Iowa Caucus thanks to his endorsement of Ted Cruz. Iowa’s ethanol industry was furious when King, a longtime friend of theirs, backed the one Republican candidate most hostile to the Renewable Fuel Standard. That’s led to efforts from some Republicans, including longtime GOP operative Nick Ryan, to recruit a challenger to King in the primary. They may soon have their man: State Senator Rick Bertrand of Sioux City. Multiple sources told Starting Line that Bertrand informed a Sioux City Chamber of Commerce meeting yesterday morning that he’s looking closely […]