Governor “Everything’s Fine” Is Whistling Past The Graveyard

Governor Kim Reynolds wants you to know that Iowa is “Number One.” Like, she really, really wants you to know that. Ever since U.S. News & World Report labeled Iowa the best state in the country to live in yesterday, Reynolds’ official office, her campaign and the state Republican Party has blasted out the praise of the award non-stop. Reynolds appeared on CBS News to tout the top state distinction. One imagines we’ll see that Iowa ranking in countless TV commercials, mail pieces and digital ads from now until the November election from the governor’s campaign. And there’s no doubt […]

Campaign Shakeup: Kim Reynolds’ Campaign Manager Departs

In a bit of ominous news for Governor Kim Reynold’s election hopes this year, her campaign manager has left the campaign. The Associated Press reported this morning that Phil Valenziano had stepped down from his role of running Reynolds’ campaign and that they would announce a new manager in a few weeks. Valenziano caused the campaign some embarrassment when he was arrested for public intoxication just as Reynolds announced her election effort last year, but concern over that seemed to mostly blow over. It’s a rather early shake-up for the incumbent Republican governor’s campaign, which may not inspire a lot of […]

Iowa Democrats Release Initial Candidate Caucus Result Numbers

The Iowa Democratic Party has released additional information and numbers from the Iowa Caucus held on February 5. While the vast majority of precincts did not break into preference groups for the governor’s race or congressional races, some did, and we now know how some of those turned out. Overall, the party reports that 4,944 delegates were elected on caucus night, 82% of which have had their names entered into the party’s database. Only 109 precincts broke out into preference groups, which account for 6.49% of all precincts. Some of those precincts were larger than others, however, and 582 delegates were […]

The Most Laughable Part Of Kim Reynolds’ New Tax Cut Plan

Governor Kim Reynolds released her wide-ranging tax cut plan earlier today, which included a total of $1.7 billion in tax reductions for Iowa businesses and taxpayers. In-depth details of the proposal have not yet been made public, and the initial plan put out today essentially amounted to a bullet point press release of all the potential positive aspects of the bill. The tax rate for the wealthiest Iowans will be slashed by about 23%, from 8.98% down to 6.9% – it will also now be applied to only people making $150,000 or more (currently it’s about $73,000 or more). Middle […]

Boulton Returns To Energy Theme In New “Fired Up” TV Ad

Senator Nate Boulton is returning to the early themes of his gubernatorial run in a new TV ad that starts running on Saturday. Back is the “stomp/clap” music that gave his campaign kick-off announcement video an energetic feel last year, as well as the senator’s “greatest hits” videos from the past legislative session. “Some folks say I get a little fired up when it comes to working families,” Boulton says in the new ad as clips of his speeches from rallies and in the Senate chamber play. “I fought til dawn against Republican attacks. I fought for healthcare and for […]

Why This Former Republican Attended His First Democratic Caucus

A guest post from Mark Masterson (pictured on the right) I would like to introduce myself.  I’m Mark Masterson, and Monday was my first caucus experience as a Democrat. I work as a state employee (a correctional officer) at the Mount Pleasant Correctional Facility, and after I saw what the Republicans at the Capitol did to public employees last session, I changed my party affiliation from Republican to Democrat. With that said, I’m new to being involved in politics at any level, but was excited to get the Governor’s race started and wanted to get involved so my voice was […]

Democrats Differ On Caucus Breakouts – One Caucus Site’s Story

It was, for the most part, the Cathy Glasson party last night at the Meredith Middle School caucus location in Des Moines. Although many caucus goers chose not to outwardly show support for a gubernatorial candidate, Glasson’s volunteers were well-organized, nor shy about their support for her. Glasson’s volunteers in each of the three precincts Starting Line attended at this caucus location all elected to join preference groups, seeming well-versed on the guidelines regarding the process. This process, although, wasn’t terribly popular in Des Moines’ Precinct 15. 32 adults and one soon-to-be 18-year-old sat in a small classroom, grouped together […]

Democrats Brave Blizzard For Off-Year Caucus – How Things Played Out

You might say that weather conditions for tonight’s Iowa precinct caucuses were less than ideal, but precinct caucus rooms were still packed with enthusiastic Democrats across the state. As of 11:30 p.m., with 80% of their precincts reporting, the Iowa Democratic Party had a “soft report” of 8,599 attendees. They expect that number to top 9,000 once the remaining precinct information is sent into headquarters (Starting Line will update this as more is known). That total already tops the turnout for the off-year caucuses in 2010 (about 5,000 people) and 2014 (about 6,500 people) – and those years didn’t have six […]

A Day In The Life Of A Nate Boulton Field Organizer

Later this evening, thousands of dedicated Iowa Democrats will trudge through the snow and the cold to attend their local precinct caucus. It’s expected to see the largest attendance ever for a non-presidential year caucus, but the stakes involved with the gubernatorial primary alone don’t ensure people turn out. Phone calls, meetings, trainings and door-knocking by campaign staff and volunteers – thousands of hours of work in all for every single campaign – get voters into those caucus rooms. That’s what Nate Boulton field organizer Adam Henderson was working on during a recent Friday when Starting Line shadowed him for […]

What Gubernatorial Campaign Strategies For The Iowa Caucus May Look Like

The next governor of Iowa and member of Congress from the state’s 3rd District could be determined by what happens on Monday when Democrats gather for their off-year caucus. Attendees at the February 5th Iowa Caucus will kick off the caucus-to-convention delegate process, one that chooses who the party’s nominee is if no candidate receives 35% in the primary. With so many well-funded candidates in the gubernatorial and 3rd District primaries, that scenario is a distinct possibility. Every campaign has been gearing up in a big way to ensure as many of their supporters as possible end up as delegates […]