Sunday Grab Bag: GOP Results, Marco Roboto And IDP Under Siege

Good afternoon readers! Starting Line is still slowly getting back into a normal routine after a considerable amount of naps and late mornings this past post-caucus week. This next week I’ll make a return to the Statehouse and do a few reports of what’s driving the discussion there. For today, a few thoughts on the Republicans and the (hopefully) final commentary on the Democratic caucus problems. The Republican Results With all the madness on the incredibly close Democratic side this week, I realized I never weighed in on the Republicans, of whose events I attended almost as much as Democrats […]

Sunday Grab Bag: Guns And Bernie, Kasich’s Awkwardness, Moore Retires

Good morning readers! With just three weeks left to the Iowa Caucus, real decisions are getting made at candidate events, coffee shops and diners. The time to decide who to caucus for is here, and Starting Line has found a surprising amount of undecided voters out at both Democratic and Republican events lately. For all those of us who have been closely following every small development in the race since last January, there are actually quite a few Iowans who wait until the last month to tune in. Starting Line had a busy weekend with a number of caucus events […]

Sunday Grab Bag: Taking Suggestions and Rubio/Cruz Iowa Schedules

Good morning readers! I hope you all had a great holiday and are rested and relaxed for the final month of the Iowa Caucus. This Sunday Grab Bag will be a lot shorter as I’ve been spending the past couple days with family and there isn’t as much to write about. 5 Weeks Left – What Do You Want To Read? We’re fast approaching February 1st, caucus night in Iowa. Many are ready for it to be over. I’m not. Covering the Iowa Caucus with Iowa Starting Line has been the best professional experience I’ve ever had. But with so […]

Sunday Grab Bag: Dem Debate, Wendy Davis, Sanders Fundraising Record

Good morning readers! Well, the Democratic primary finally got back into the news this week, though not for what anyone expected. The firestorm over the Sanders/DNC data breach set off a nasty two days of internal fighting in the Democratic Party. Fortunately, Sanders’ VAN access has been restored and hopefully everyone can start to move on. The Democratic Debate The third debate for the Democrats has come and gone, and little has changed because of it. All three candidates put in very solid performances, but there weren’t any real break-out moments. That’s not good for Sanders or O’Malley, both of […]

Sunday Grab Bag: Bernie Blackout, Leadership, Iowa Poll, Carson’s Focus

Good morning readers! So that was an interesting week in American politics, huh? I’m not sure if I can remember anything quite like a presidential candidate proposing a complete ban on an entire religious group from entering the country. Every time we thought the 2016 election cycle has hit a new low… In fact, I’m sure Trump will roll out something in the next month that will make this week look tame in comparison. Anyway, here’s our quick(er) takes on some other stories from the week: Bernie’s Media Blackout This week Bernie Sanders’ campaign lambasted the media for their lack […]

Sunday Grab Bag: Boring Reporting, Bernie’s Super PAC, Chelgren Toast?

Good morning readers! Sorry about that Iowa game, but at least we got a hilariously incorrect Joni Ernst tweet out of it. It was a busy week on the Iowa Caucus trail, so let’s get right into it: Reporting On The Boring This weekend seven Republican candidates were in Iowa on the same day, leading to tough choices by caucus reporters on who to cover. I made the wrong choices, apparently. Rather than hit up the entertaining Trump events in Spencer and Davenport, or Carson’s veterans event in Waterloo (where he made a number of interesting comments on women in […]

Sunday Grab Bag: PP Attack, Loebsack Refugee Vote, Caucus Decisions

Good morning readers! Starting Line is back after a couple days off for the Thanksgiving holiday and to attend to newly-arrived Baby Starting Line. We’re now looking at the final two month sprint heading to the Iowa Caucus on February 1st. In these next two months, Starting Line will be getting back to some basics that served us well early on. I’ll be posting Sunday Grab Bags and Monday Power Rankings on a regular basis once again. I’d gotten away from the power rankings for a few months as there simply weren’t enough races with new developments that often to […]

Sunday Grab Bag: GOP’s Keystone Conundrum, Hillary’s Immigration and ISIS

Good morning readers! As always, a lot happened in the political world this week. Enjoy our Sunday Grab Bag of shorter takes on a number of Iowa and national political topics: The Catch-22 of Keystone and Eminent Domain The most interesting exchange I’ve seen so far from the 2016 trail happened Thursday night at a Carly Fiorina event in West Des Moines. A younger man asked Fiorina whether she supports eminent domain laws. Somehow by the tone in which he said it, I just knew exactly where he was going. Fiorina did not. Of course I oppose it, she responded, […]

Sunday Grab Bag: Iowa Goes Pink for Schools, Clipboard Season, and Baltimore

Good morning readers! As always, a lot happened in the political world this week. Enjoy our Sunday Grab Bag of shorter takes on a number of Iowa and national political topics: Democrats and Allies Unite in Pink for Education The stalemate over education funding at the Iowa Statehouse continues this week as Republicans refuse to budge from their original paltry 1.25% allowable growth increase. ISEA, Democrats and education allies showed their frustration on Thursday by encouraging supporters to wear pink across the state in solidarity with the teachers receiving pink slips. 1,130 teachers have either been laid off or positions […]

Sunday Grab Bag: Slow Down Cruz, Dems’ Plans and Twitter Brigades

Good afternoon readers! As always, a lot happened in the political world this week. Enjoy our Sunday Grab Bag of shorter takes on a number of Iowa and national political topics: Calm Down There, Teddy Most of the candidates at last night’s Faith and Freedom Coalition gave their typical stump speech, with an emphasis on religious issues. Ted Cruz, however, rolled out some new attack lines that raised a few eyebrows and got the crowd cheering and stomping their feet. He claimed the Democratic Party was practicing “liberal fascism” against Christians with their stances on gay marriage, and went so […]