Few Republicans Try To Close The Deal At Big GOP Event

The Republican Party of Iowa’s Growth And Opportunity event on Saturday was meant as a sort of replacement for the Iowa Straw Poll, and judging from many of the candidates’ speeches you’d think they were still in that August mindset. Few of the White House hopefuls deviated from their typical stump speeches. Despite being a mere three months from the Iowa Caucus, many contenders’ pitches remain in the introductory stage. That seemed odd considering most of the 2,000 attendees at the event were involved party activists who have seen all of these people at events or watched them online. The […]

Fair Frenzy: Sanders’ Big Day, Trump Copter, Hillary Meets Butter Cow

“Nothing Compares” says this year’s Iowa State Fair slogan. They had no idea how right they’d be. I’ve experienced a lot of crazy, surreal days in Iowa politics around caucus season, but yesterday’s madness at the State Fair definitely surpasses them all. Everywhere you went fair-goers were talking non-stop about the visiting candidates. Donald Trump flew in on his helicopter. Hillary Clinton walked the Fair, surrounded by a swarm of press and well-wishers. Like medieval banners heralding a king’s arrival, the lofted boom mics fair-goers first saw in the distance signaled a presidential candidate was coming near. However, while the […]

Why Rick Santorum’s Loss Should Be Jeb Bush’s Gain

After 2012, Rick Santorum’s world fell apart. As set out in Politco, Santorum’s 2011-12 team – the team that got him the 34 caucus votes that made him a contender – has broken up. Not Simon and Garfunkel sometimes-we-still-do-shows-together broken up, Taylor Swift we are never, ever, ever getting back together broken up. Santorum’s former campaign driver (or talking point prop), Chuck Laudner, is now attending to Donald Trump. Santorum’s former campaign managers are with Rand Paul. Important Santorum cheerleaders like former Sec. of State Matt Schultz have Cruz’ed away, while others, like Northwest Iowa powerhouse Sam Clovis, refuse to […]

Republicans Should Listen To Rick Santorum – He’s Saying The Smartest Things In The Race

For those who have written off and ignored Rick Santorum as a past-his-prime player in the country’s social conservatism movement, you might want to tune back in to his 2016 campaign. He’s quickly become the Republican field’s uncomfortable-truth-teller, urging his party to move on from Reagan economics and adopt a message aimed at the working class. Santorum, who is expected to officially announce his candidacy tomorrow, stands alone in his quest, telling numerous GOP audiences things they don’t want to hear, who usually reward him with light applause, if that. Aside from Rand Paul’s, his message is the most unique, […]

The Republican Bachelor – Who’s In Iowa for the Right Reasons?

Just as the Republican presidential race heats up in Iowa, the state’s own Chris Soules will be ending his much-hyped run on ABC’s The Bachelor. Sorry to disappoint, Democratic ladies, but Chris is a big Republican. He’s already met several of the presidential hopefuls, and Starting Line strongly believes that Chris will publicly endorse in the Iowa Caucus. Don’t discount him as just some reality TV star. He’s the most popular leading man The Bachelor has had in years, particularly in his native Iowa. An endorsement could grab attention from a large base of young people who aren’t typically engaged […]

Rick Santorum Tests Out “Blue Collar Conservative” Appeal

Hoping to recapture the magic of his 2012 Iowa Caucus win, Rick Santorum crisscrossed the state in the days following Steve King’s Freedom Summit in Des Moines. From Sioux City to Davenport, the former Pennsylvania Senator dropped in at some of his old haunts to rekindle an interest in another presidential run. Yet even as he sported a Reagan Library jacket on his Monday swing, he encouraged Republicans to move on from the messaging themes of the Reagan years.