The 2015 Iowa Starting Line Awards

It’s the last day of 2015! Which means it finally gets less weird to talk about the 2016 election when the vast majority of important campaign developments and work came in 2015. Before the year is out, Starting Line is doing a year-end wrap-up of the best and worst from 2015 Iowa Caucus coverage in an award format. So we asked all our best readers and insider friends who they thought deserved recognition for various caucus and Iowa politics categories this year. Please enjoy our official 2015 Iowa Starting Line awards, a mix of user submissions and our own personal […]

The Road Ahead For Democrats: An Interview With David Brock

While the Republican and Democratic candidates battle it out in the early states in their respective primaries, the main battle royale looms in the general election later next year. But that fight won’t simply be waged by the eventual nominees of both parties. A host of accompanying Super PACs, party infrastructure and national strategists will help shape the final outcome. One of the key figures on the Democratic side will be David Brock, the head of Correct The Record. Brock, often a controversial figure in national politics, was a conservative writer and journalist early in his career and became a […]

O’Malley Blasts ICE For Christmas Deportation Plan

Martin O’Malley was the first presidential candidate back in Iowa following the Christmas holiday season, speaking to a crowd of a little over 100 people at the Des Moines Social Club last night. He was at an event hosted by STAR PAC, an organization that focuses on foreign policy and military arms reductions around the world. They endorsed O’Malley earlier this month. O’Malley spoke on America’s role in the world, then took questions from the audience. One younger Hispanic woman asked about the recent deportation plans and immigration. O’Malley replied by suggesting suspect motives on ICE’s part in their Christmas […]

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 […]

Deconstructing The Latest DNC Data Conspiracy Theory

It’s the story that won’t die. More than a week after the biggest kerfuffle on the Democratic primary side yet, a certain member of Sanders’ top advisers simply won’t let go and continues to press the DNC/VAN data breach. Perhaps he just thinks it’s good business, since the campaign raised $1 million the day they sent out their email accusing the DNC of shutting off their access solely because of bias. But the most recent accusations are entering conspiracy theory territory, and perhaps should be explored a littler more closely. In a Christmas Day article in Yahoo News, a “top […]

Desmund Adams Gets List Of Endorsements For Christmas

3rd District Congressional candidate Desmund Adams gathered friends, family and local activists at a Des Moines hotel on the morning of Christmas Eve to announce a long list of new endorsements for his campaign. Former Lt. Governor Jo Ann Zimmerman came on board as his campaign chair, along with a number of prominent central Iowans as co-chairs to provide advice and assistance. “I found [Adams] was a candidate who knew how to work very, very hard,” said Zimmerman in her introduction of Adams. “Solid family, good background for running. This 3rd Congressional District is a purple district. It will take […]

The Christmas Gifts Voters Should Give Each Candidate

It’s almost Christmas and Starting Line is in the festive mood. The presidential candidates have worked long and hard this year, and perhaps it’s time for the voters to reward them with a gift for the holidays. But what to get each? They almost all are certain to end up on the naughty list for various misdeeds in 2015 (Trump’s done enough to land him there for at least three lifetimes), but that’s alright. Here’s our ideas of the best gifts voters could get each candidate: Have some ideas of your own? Leave them in the comments section or on […]

Should Iowa Democrats Adopt a Senator? And Who?

Guest post from Josh Hughes It’s not necessarily a fun time to be an Iowa Democrat. After 30 years of Tom Harkin’s steady hand, us Democrats are in the proverbial “wilderness”. With just one of six federally elected positions in our column, and a teetering, one seat majority in the State Senate, Iowa Democrats are in a precarious situation. We are living in a post-Tom Harkin reality- one where we can’t take for granted having a level headed, progressive voice in the US Senate. While we have several outstanding candidates that are running for Senate in 2016, and surely more […]

The Top Issue Groups Organizing In The Iowa Caucus

The Iowa Caucus isn’t just about the presidential candidates. Every cycle a multitude of issue-based organizations pop up in Iowa to advocate for their priority. Some are just here for the caucus, while others use the excitement around the presidential race to build long-term movements in the state. Their tactics vary, but most all aim to meet with the candidates to discuss their issue while building grassroots organizations for the caucus. They use that ground operation to demonstrate to the White House hopefuls just how many Iowans will be turning out to the caucus who care about their particular issue. […]

Monday Rankings: Who Drops Out After Iowa?

The end is near. Not just for the Iowa Caucus, but for many candidates’ campaigns. A poor showing in Iowa will mean it’s time to close up shop for many presidential hopefuls. This is where a lot of the underdogs have put their hopes, using the retail politicking and organizing of Iowa to compete with the candidates with considerably more money. It still won’t be enough for many, however, and Iowa will once again play its role in winnowing the field. Here’s our rankings of who is most likely to drop out of the presidential race after Iowa: 1. Rick […]