They’re Not Running, But They Could Shape The 2020 Debate In Iowa

Iowa saw more than its fair share of Democratic presidential hopefuls come through the state these past two years – more than two dozen by my count. But not every Democrat with a national profile who traveled to Iowa had their eyes on a White House run. And while several notable names won’t be candidates in the wild, free-for-all Iowa Caucus in 2020, their vision, work and influence here could easily shape how the nomination process plays out. Rising stars in Congress like Ro Khanna and Pramila Jayapal could help form the debate over what it means to be a […]

Grinnell College Risks Its Reputation With Labor Dispute

What is Grinnell College thinking in its fight with its own students over a labor rights dispute? The liberal arts school located in the middle of Iowa has refused to bargain with the student workers union on campus and is trying to quash its effort to cover more students. The fallout from a National Labor Relations Board decision that Grinnell is seeking could have serious consequences for students’ union rights all across the country. If you haven’t followed the recent developments, the Des Moines Register has covered the conflict here. The gist of the story is this: student workers voted […]

A Long Legislative Session Ahead For Nate Boulton

State Senator Nate Boulton won’t have a lot to do this legislative session after being named to no committee spots this week, and it doesn’t really get any better for him from there. Boulton was left off Senate Democrats’ committee assignments for the 2019 session as part of the ongoing fallout from allegations of sexual misconduct that drove him from the gubernatorial race. “I will defer making any committee assignments for Senator Boulton until the Senate Ethics Committee completes its ongoing investigation into the complaint filed against him,” Senate Democrats Leader Janet Petersen said in a statement. Petersen had called […]

Ep76: Rural Iowa Election Results & Trends In 2018

Iowa Starting Line Podcast host Pat Rynard discusses the changing voter trends in Iowa’s rural counties with Marion County Democratic Party Chair Megan Day Suhr.

Michael Bloomberg Hints At What A 2020 Run Would Look Like

Former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg made a swing through Iowa on Tuesday, increasing speculation he may run for the Democratic nomination for president in 2020. The official reason for Bloomberg’s trip was to highlight climate change solutions and unveil his new film on the subject, but it also served as an early preview of what a presidential bid might look like. That preview was pretty simple and clear-cut: a Bloomberg run would focus on climate change, gun safety, possibly opioid addiction and make calls for bi-partisanship. “We’ve got to have a government that faces the issues. You can’t […]

Cory Booker Wades Into An Iowa County Supervisor Race

Senator Cory Booker is lending a hand to a Democratic candidate for county supervisor in Iowa. Booker recorded a minute-long endorsement video for Royceann Porter, a Teamsters organizer and community leader who’s running in the special election for a Johnson County supervisor seat. If elected, Porter would be the first person of color elected to a countywide office in Johnson County. “[I’m] so excited about Royceann Porter, who is running on December 18th for a special election to be county supervisor,” Booker says in the video. “This is a critical election, we need folks to turn out and vote. Your […]

Ep75: Blue-Collar Counties Election Results & Trends In 2018

 Iowa Starting Line Podcast host Pat Rynard discusses the changing voter trends in Iowa’s blue-collar counties along the Mississippi River. Joining us are Burlington Hawkeye reporter Libby Meyer and IBEW union leader Pete Hird.

Dems Score First Legal Victory In Getting Winneshiek Absentee Ballots Counted

Democratic candidate Kayla Koether has won an important first step in the legal battle to get 33 absentee ballots counted in the House District 55 race, an election where she trails Republican Representative Michael Bergan by nine votes after last week’s recount. This morning a judge ordered the Winneshiek County Auditor to take the ballots in question to the Waterloo Post Office to have their barcodes scanned. The 33 ballots arrived at the auditor’s office after the election with no postmark, and Auditor Ben Steines refused to count them. The Secretary of State’s office backed up that decision. However, an […]

Ep74: The Suburbs Election Results & Trends

 Iowa Starting Line Podcast host Pat Rynard discusses the changing voter trends in the Iowa suburbs with Ankeny Area Democrats Chair Zaak Barnes and Representative-Elect Jennifer Konfrst, who flipped a red Iowa House seat to blue to in the Des Moines suburbs.

Democrats Elevate Midwest’s Cheri Bustos To Run DCCC

The woman in charge of Democrats’ campaign efforts in the House next year will be Cheri Bustos, one of the party’s leading strategist on winning difficult Midwestern seats. The Illinois congresswoman was selected today by her House colleagues to chair the DCCC, the party’s campaign arm that oversees most House races. She beat out two Democrats from Washington State, winning with 117 votes to Suzan DelBene’s 83 votes and Denny Heck’s 32 votes. Another contender for the job from New York dropped out for health reasons. In selecting Bustos, Democrats now have someone who’s extremely skilled at getting elected in […]