What To Watch For In Today’s Iowa Primaries

It’s primary day in Iowa! Polls are open until 9:00PM, and campaigns are going all-out today to get their identified supporters to the polls. What should Iowa politics watchers keep their eye on tonight? Starting Line has a few suggestions below. You can also watch myself and The Iowa Republican’s Craig Robinson do live commentary on the results tonight with the ABC 5/WOI team. We’ll be covering the results on The CW Channel (Channel 9 in Des Moines, I believe), then on Channel 5 during their 10:00 newscast. Make sure to tune in for some good, informed analysis!   Iowa Senate In […]

Another Look At Updated Early Vote Numbers For The Primary

With just two weeks left before Iowa’s primary elections on June 7, let’s take another look at the early vote totals across the state. A lot has changed since we first discussed the numbers three weeks ago. The Secretary of State’s office is posting these totals regularly now, so you can always go check yourself on their website. Also, here’s the useful list of candidates running. One caveat for the numbers I’m posting here – you’ll note that in some places the return rate of absentee ballots is very low. My guess in most of these cases is that those are areas […]

What Early Voting Numbers May Say About Iowa’s Primary Races

Early voting in Iowa’s June 7th primary has now been underway for a week. Iowans can vote in person at their county auditor’s office or by an absentee ballot at home. The number of those absentees are always a very interesting thing to track (especially to this former field staffer). It’s one of the only public numbers you can get that gives a neutral observer a look into the campaigns. They can tell you a lot about where the excitement is around the state for certain races and which campaigns may be well-organized, hitting the pavement to get requests and collect […]

Mark Chelgren To Drop Out Of 2nd District Race

Multiple Republican sources confirmed to Starting Line that State Senator Mark Chelgren of Ottumwa plans on dropping his bid to challenge Congressman Dave Loebsack in the 2nd District. Chelgren had not yet officially filed his nominating papers for the seat, but had made clear his intention to run. He apparently hadn’t raised much or any money yet, as he did not file a campaign finance report with the FEC. Republicans within the 2nd District heard that the reasoning revolves around Chelgren wanting to focus on legislation in the State Senate and that his business would take up too much time […]

Mark Chelgren’s Plan For 2nd Offense Immigrants: Execute Them

Mark Chelgren, Republican state senator and candidate for Congress in the 2nd District, has a rather unique immigration plan he wants to talk about. According to an interview he did with the Journal Express of Marion County, Chelgren will advocate for executing immigrants who come to the country illegally a second time after being deported. From the article: “For border security, Chelgren believes a fence would define the border and control who enters and leaves. If one is found to have crossed into the country illegally, committed a felony while here, then been deported, he supports executing that individual if […]

Sources Report Mark Chelgren Planning Run Against Loebsack in 2nd

Iowans could see quite the interesting race for the 2nd Congressional District in 2016, as Republican State Senator Mark Chelgren of Ottumwa is reportedly planning a run against Congressman Dave Loebsack, Democrats’ sole remaining member of Congress. Four Republican sources and three Democratic ones in and around the 2nd District tell Starting Line that Chelgren has been meeting with party leaders to discuss a potential campaign. Close watchers of State Senate debate know Chelgren very well – he’s one of the Republicans’ most prolific talkers, often proposing amendments and reading from his pocket Iowa Constitution. He also has surprised Democrats […]