Iowa Democrats Set 2018 Convention Date – How It Impacts Governor’s Race

At the Iowa Democratic Party’s State Central Committee meeting yesterday, party members set the official timeline for the 2018 caucus-to-convention process (in addition to electing Troy Price the new IDP chair). While non-presidential year caucuses and state conventions have been relatively sleepy affairs in recent cycles, next year’s could be extremely consequential. With eight candidates in the gubernatorial field – about six of which will be well-funded with serious support – the likelihood of a contested convention for the Democratic nomination is a real possibility. There’s also a chance (albeit a little less likely) that the 1st and 3rd Congressional […]

Interview: Troy Price Looks To “Shake Up This Party” After IDP Chair Election

Troy Price was elected as the new chair of the Iowa Democratic Party on Saturday. Shortly afterward he spoke with Radio Iowa and Starting line about his immediate plans for moving the party forward. Here’s a look at some of his answers to various questions. Rethinking The Coordinated Campaign In 2018 “The party can sometimes get beholden to certain campaigns or certain campaign committees,” Price said. “And they will have a certain idea about what the campaign should look like, and it’s going to be the exact same thing it looks like in every other contested state that they’re challenging, […]

Troy Price Elected New Chair Of The Iowa Democratic Party

Longtime Iowa political staffer Troy Price was elected by the party’s state central committee this morning in Des Moines to take the reigns of the Iowa Democratic Party through the 2018 election. He will fill out the remaining term of Derek Eadon, who resigned the post in June for health reasons. Price won out over Julie Stauch and Bob Krause. Andrea Phillips, who will now go back to being the party’s 1st Vice Chair, had been filling in as the acting chair for the past four weeks. Price has a long resume in Iowa politics. He was the executive director […]

John Norris Releases Video From His Announcement Tour

Two weeks ago John Norris set off on a six-day, 20-stop tour around Iowa to kick off his gubernatorial run, pulling in good crowds in particular at his Des Moines-area and Red Oak events. Today his campaign released a video with highlights from the tour, focusing in on scenes and excerpts that highlighted his rural background and appeal. Norris hit up a number of smaller towns on his announcement tour and during his exploratory phase, and is leaning hard on that message to show Democratic voters he can win back areas they’ve lost in recent elections. The video has many […]

A Look At Thomas Heckroth And His 1st District Run

Thomas Heckroth has a constant reminder of his small-town roots at home: his goldendoodle puppy, “Waverly,” named after the Bremer County town he grew up in. Back in 2006 he knocked doors in that county and nearby ones for his father’s successful run for state senate. Now he’s back in Iowa, following ten years out of the state for school and working in Tom Harkin’s office and in the private sector in New York, to run for Congress in Iowa’s 1st District. “Serving the community and your country has been in my family for a long time,” Heckroth explained to […]

Fred Hubbell Officially Launches Gubernatorial Bid – See The Video

Des Moines businessman and philanthropist Fred Hubbell made it official today: he’s running for governor. He had started up an exploratory committee back in late May, and has been mostly been working behind the scenes the past two months with his campaign team to prepare a launch and flesh out their operation. He’s slowly introduced himself to activists at a handful of Democratic events, but hasn’t participated in any forums yet or embarked on a statewide trip. Hubbell marked his announcement with a kick-off video, which shows him discussing Iowa’s economic opportunities with small business owners and workers, often with […]

Everyone Is Running For Everything In Iowa In 2018

Just as reliably as the sun rises in the East and sets in the West, not a week goes by in Iowa politics without a new candidate running for this or that major office. Iowa Democrats have about 22 declared or strongly-considering candidates for governor and the three Republican-held congressional districts. The field for every race has continued to grow this summer, though we may be finally nearing the end of the announcement phase. It’s an interesting parallel to the huge, 17-candidate Republican presidential primary field in 2016. Out of power for a while now, there’s fewer influential power-brokers or […]

Senate Vote On E15 Could Be Early Test For 2020 Democrats In Iowa

An upcoming vote on a little-known EPA rule on E15 ethanol could pose an early first test for potential presidential candidates looking to come through Iowa. The U.S. Senate’s Environmental and Public Works committee will soon consider the Consumer and Fuel Retailer Choice Act, which allows E15 fuel to be sold during the summer months. Renewable fuel advocates see it as a key priority for expanding ethanol usage. Currently, you can only sell E15 for eight and a half months out of the year. The issue has to do with Reid vapor pressure restrictions, which sees fuel evaporation rates climb […]

Bernie Sanders’ Progressive Movement Lives On, Grows In Iowa

You could have mistaken the packed hall of Citizens for Community Improvement’s annual gathering yesterday for one of the larger Bernie Sanders rallies during the 2016 Iowa Caucus. Or you might have thought it was the Democratic Party’s state convention (it was held in the same room) – except this might have had more people. Well over 1,000 progressive activists filled the chairs for Bernie Sanders’ afternoon keynote address, but it was nearly just as crowded for the early morning issue advocacy training sessions. Saturday’s event highlighted the exponential growth that progressive advocacy groups like CCI have seen since the […]

Businesswoman Leann Jacobsen Considers Run Against Steve King

One of the longstanding frustrations of moderate Republicans and some independents in Iowa’s 4th Congressional District isn’t so much the incendiary things Steve King says; it’s instead what local issues he isn’t talking about. While King is complaining on Twitter about immigrants and touting far-right European political movements, small town economies in Western Iowa are struggling. Now Leann Jacobsen, a Spencer city councilwoman whose expertise is building up small business communities in Northwest Iowa, is thinking about challenging King in 2018. “I have 30 years of business experience which provides a lot of passion around seeing business succeed, from start-ups […]