Iowa (GOP Club)

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  • Can Jeb Bush win Iowa? Operatives say he may be more formidable than is assumed

    12/17/2014 5:44:13 PM PST · by 2ndDivisionVet · 53 replies
    The Politico ^ | December 16, 2014 | James Hohmann
    The Bush family has had its share of disappointment and elation in Iowa and New Hampshire. George H.W. Bush finished a dismal third in the 1988 Iowa caucuses, before rebounding in New Hampshire. George W. Bush, however, won the 2000 caucuses, only to get thumped by John McCain in New Hampshire. Now, with Jeb Bush’s announcement on Tuesday, a third Bush seems to be preparing to face the demanding voters of the first two states in the presidential selection process, with uncertain expectations. But a chorus of top Republicans in Iowa and New Hampshire said that the former Florida governor...
  • President Trump? Says 'there's a substantial chance' he'll run & slaps Cruz for being born in Canada

    12/16/2014 2:23:26 PM PST · by 2ndDivisionVet · 69 replies
    The London Daily Mail ^ | December 16, 2014 | David Martosko
    * Trump has kept his spotlight hot and raised smirks by speculating about a White House run, but now he's scheduling speeches in early primary states * 'A lot of people believe I'm having fun with it, and I enjoy the process,' he said during an Economic Club of Washington event, but 'the country's in serious trouble' * He lashed out at potential opponents including Jeb Bush and Ted Cruz * Couldn't come up with a 'single nice thing' to say about Hillary Clinton and insists Sen. Elizabeth Warren will give her serious competition * Trump has flirted with running...
  • Palin, Cruz, Huckabee and Santorum to travel to Iowa Freedom Summit

    12/08/2014 1:13:58 PM PST · by 2ndDivisionVet · 15 replies
    WQAD-TV / CNN ^ | December 8, 2014 | Shellie Nelson
    <p>Sarah Palin, the former Alaska governor and vice presidential pick, is headed to Iowa in January 2015 for a conservative gathering that will showcase no fewer than nine potential 2016 presidential contenders.</p> <p>She’s one of the confirmed speakers at the inaugural Iowa Freedom Summit, an event organized by Iowa Rep. Steve King and conservative group Citizens United to “bring grassroots activists from across Iowa to hear directly from national conservative leaders,” per its website. The event is scheduled for Jan. 24.</p>
  • ‘Hard-liner’ Rep. Steve King becomes GOP’s voice on immigration

    12/06/2014 8:50:16 PM PST · by 2ndDivisionVet · 25 replies
    UK Progressive ^ | December 7, 2014
    Prominently featured on Representative Steve King’s congressional website are what he calls “illegal immigration stories” that tell of undocumented people, mainly Hispanics, wreaking havoc in America: killing, robbing, kidnapping, trafficking in sex and drugs. As the face of the opposition to comprehensive immigration legislation in Congress, King has long used fiery rhetoric to argue for deporting all 12 million undocumented residents and fortifying U.S. borders. Now, the Iowa congressman’s high-profile role in the debate over President Barack Obama’s executive order on immigration threatens Republican leaders’ efforts to rebrand the party as more friendly to Hispanics, while his effort to block...
  • Dr. Carson Movement Gains Momentum Across State

    11/23/2014 5:45:46 PM PST · by 2ndDivisionVet · 34 replies
    WHO-TV ^ | November 22, 2014 | Jodi Whitworth
    (VIDEO-AT-LINK)DES MOINES, Iowa – His name is growing in popularity across the country and across the state and on Saturday Dr. Ben Carson was back in Des Moines for the second time since August. He spoke tonight at the “Celebrate the Family” dinner event hosted by The Family Leader. The retired neuro surgeon confirms he’s thinking about running for president in 2016 but didn’t go into detail during his speech. Carson spoke for 45 minutes on several issues; faith and government, health and education. He says, “Really the thing that is going to save America, is going to be the...
  • King, CU to host potential 2016 candidates: Iowa Freedom Summit to take place in January 2015

    11/18/2014 1:05:53 PM PST · by 2ndDivisionVet · 4 replies
    KCRG-TV ^ | November 18, 2014 | James Q. Lynch, The Gazette
    CEDAR RAPIDS — Western Iowa U.S. Rep. Steve King is planning a caucus 2016 kickoff featuring at least three potential Republican presidential candidates in January. King, who earlier this month was re-elected to a seventh term, will team up with Citizens United to host the inaugural “Iowa Freedom Summit” in Des Moines Jan. 24. Among the confirmed speakers are Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum and former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee. Also in the lineup are Utah Sen. Mike Lee; Tennessee U.S. Rep. Marsha Blackburn; former Ambassador John Bolton and former Hewlett-Packard CEO Carly Fiorina. Additional speakers...
  • Is Iowa already sick of Hillary Clinton?

    11/15/2014 9:06:09 PM PST · by 2ndDivisionVet · 25 replies
    The New York Post ^ | November 15, 2014 | Lee Rood
    DES MOINES, Iowa — If you’re a die-hard Democrat in New York hoping to overcome the disappointment that was Nov. 4, you’re worried. But here in Iowa, where the first-in-the-nation caucuses are a mere 14 months away, some are breaking into a cold sweat. Most party leaders here will assure you all conversations about the 2016 presidential nomination still begin and end with Hillary Clinton. The former first lady and secretary of state is a sentimental favorite. Though she has not formally announced her candidacy, her well-oiled super PAC may be the most deeply rooted ever at this stage in...
  • Something Funny Happened In Iowa, And It May Hurt Democrats In 2016

    11/12/2014 2:55:28 PM PST · by 2ndDivisionVet · 11 replies
    FiveThirtyEight ^ | November 11, 2014 | Harry Enten
    Republican Sen.-elect Joni Ernst easily won her race in Iowa last Tuesday, beating Democrat Bruce Braley by 8.5 percentage points. Her victory wasn’t shocking, but its size was (to everyone except pollster Ann Selzer, that is). The final FiveThirtyEight projection had Ernst winning by just 1.5 percentage points. What the heck happened? Here’s one explanation: White voters in Iowa without a college degree have shifted away from the Democratic Party. And if that shift persists, it could have a big effect on the presidential race in 2016, altering the White House math by eliminating the Democratic edge in the electoral...
  • Charles Pierce Live Blogging: Open All Night (Schadenfreude-alicious)

    11/06/2014 8:16:03 AM PST · by 2ndDivisionVet · 21 replies
    Esquire Magazine's The Politics Blog ^ | November 4, 2014 | Charles P. Pierce
    1:30AM -- I think it was contemplating the fact that both Sam Brownback and Paul LePage both may have survived as governors that was the last straw for me tonight. Brownback has wrecked his state. Even Kansas Republicans believe that. LePage is a local embarrassment who became a national embarrassment in the final days before the election. Even Maine Republicans believe that. But Brownback will go back to wrecking his state, and LePage will go back to embarrassing his because of an attitude that Republicans, and the conservative movement that has powered the party, have cultivated carefully over the last...
  • MSNBC: Harkin comments about Joni Ernst are “stupid”, could backfire on Braley

    11/03/2014 5:49:50 PM PST · by 2ndDivisionVet · 15 replies
    The Right Scoop ^ | November 3, 2014
    Over the weekend Senator Harkin, while campaigning for Bruce Braley, suggested that people may vote for Joni Ernst because she’s really attractive and sounds nice, but they shouldn’t be fooled by that. MSNBC this morning called the comments stupid and said it’s likely they could backfire on Braley:(VIDEO-AT-LINK)This morning Joni Ernst went on Fox and Friends and called the Senator’s words offensive:(VIDEO-AT-LINK)As we know already Ernst has jumped to a nice 7-point lead over Braley and while Harkin’s comment’s may not backfire, it certainly won’t help Braley either.
  • Hillary Clinton: Dodging tough questions should be 'disqualifying' in Iowa

    10/30/2014 2:15:47 AM PDT · by 2ndDivisionVet · 23 replies
    WICU-TV / CNN ^ | October 29, 2014 | Dan Merica
    CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (CNN) -- Hillary Clinton swiped at Republican Senate hopeful Joni Ernst on Wednesday for canceling a meeting with the Des Moines Register editorial board last week, telling a labor audience that not answering "tough questions" is "disqualifying" in the state. "I have concluded that Iowans take politics really seriously," Clinton said. "You test your candidates, you actually force them to be the best they can be and they have to be willing to answer the tough questions." Democrat Bruce Braley "has been willing to do this, and his opponent has not," she said. ---snip--- Clinton also knocked...
  • The NYT has had enough of you bumpkins deciding elections

    10/29/2014 3:48:29 PM PDT · by 2ndDivisionVet · 14 replies
    Hot Air ^ | October 29, 2014 | Jazz Shaw
    At first glance, it’s tempting to think that Mark Leibovitch is calling various Republican candidates stupid in his New York Times article, The Bumpkinification of the Midterm Elections. It would be an easy and understandable mistake to make, given that the introduction focuses almost entirely on Joni Ernst, with a generous sprinkling of Sarah Palin and other, almost exclusively GOP figures throughout the piece. But a closer reading reveals that even though the author might be thinking the candidates are toothless, drooling hicks, he’s really casting stones at those of you stupid enough to fall for their homespun, down on...
  • The Bumpkinification of the Midterm Elections

    10/28/2014 12:55:08 PM PDT · by 2ndDivisionVet · 24 replies
    The New York Times Magazine ^ | October 28, 2014 | Mark Leibovich
    Joni Ernst, the Iowa state senator and Iraq War veteran, was standing in a barn in a purple flannel shirt and an unzipped vest. Beside her, various swine burrowed in the hog lot; two small pigs spooned; there was copious squealing. When Ernst, who grew up on a farm castrating hogs, opened her mouth to speak, she drew the inevitable connection between her upbringing and her current role as a Republican candidate for the United States Senate. “When I get to Washington, I’ll know how to cut pork,” Ernst said, smiling. Title cards reinforced her credentials. (“Joni Ernst: Mother. Soldier....
  • Close Iowa Senate Race Could Come Down To How Women Vote

    10/25/2014 7:28:15 PM PDT · by 2ndDivisionVet · 13 replies
    National Public Radio ^ | October 20, 2014 | Robert Siegel
    (AUDIO-AT-LINK)There's a woman running in the tight race for the Senate in Iowa — one of the contests that will decide who controls the Senate next year. In the 21st century, a female candidate for Senate may not sound historic. But in Iowa, it is. The state shares a rare distinction with Mississippi: It has never elected a woman to the Senate, to the House, or to be governor. Republican state Sen. Joni Ernst is trying to change that in her race against Democratic U.S. Rep. Bruce Braley — a race in which the role of female voters is central....
  • Christie builds Iowa base

    10/25/2014 12:28:10 PM PDT · by 2ndDivisionVet · 25 replies
    The Hill's Ballot Box ^ | October 25, 2014 | Jesse Byrnes
    New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie is returning to the early presidential caucus state of Iowa on Saturday where he is slated to speak at two events. The potential 2016 Republican presidential contender is scheduled to speak at a luncheon for Rep. Steve King's (R-Iowa) annual pheasant hunt north of Akron before keynoting a birthday fundraiser for Gov. Terry Branstad (R) in Clive. King's weekend hunt, held at the Hole ‘N the Wall Lodge, has in the past attracted potential Republican contenders such as Sen. Ted Cruz (Texas), former Sen. Rick Santorum (Pennsylvania) and Texas Gov. Rick Perry. Christie, who will...
  • Early Voting Turnout for Republicans in Iowa is Unprecedented: “This has never happened before.”

    10/24/2014 2:00:06 PM PDT · by 2ndDivisionVet · 38 replies
    Legal Insurrection ^ | October 24, 2014 | Aleister
    Early voting is looking good for Iowa Republican Joni Ernst. In fact, it’s looking better than usual. Kirsten Hunter of the Washington Free Beacon reports that even CNN is acknowledging the trend: CNN: Iowa Early Vote Data Shows Unprecedented Republican Numbers Elated Republicans are celebrating the unprecedented success of U.S. Senate candidate Joni Ernst (R) in Iowa’s early voting. Iowa Republicans banked a surge of early voters this week, a practice usually dominated by Democrats in the state. Ernst’s unprecedented success is also the result of her opponent, Rep. Bruce Braley’s, failure to mobilize Iowa Democrats despite receiving support from...
  • The real problem with Joni Ernst’s quote about guns and the government

    10/23/2014 7:20:36 PM PDT · by 2ndDivisionVet · 29 replies
    The Washington Post's Plum Line ^ | October 23, 2014 | Paul Waldman
    Regular readers will know that I’m a critic of the “My opponent said something objectionable and I’m outraged!” school of campaigning, not to mention the “Candidate said something objectionable!” school of campaign coverage. One of the most important rules in assessing “gaffes” or outsized statements is that if the moment was extemporaneous, out of character, instantly regretted, and not repeated, then we should give it a pass, because it probably reveals next to nothing about the person who said it. Having said that, there’s a new statement we learn about today from Iowa Senate candidate Joni Ernst that deserves some...
  • Ernst snubs Iowa newspaper

    10/23/2014 4:04:20 PM PDT · by entropy12 · 19 replies
    The Hill ^ | Oct 23, 14 | Ben Kamisar
    Senate candidate Joni Ernst (R-Iowa) has canceled her meeting with the Des Moines Register editorial board Thursday as the paper works to finalize its Senate endorsement. “Recent editorials in the Des Moines Register make their position in this race perfectly clear, and it’s one that many voters across our state seem to disagree with,” Ernst campaign spokeswoman Gretchen Hamel told the Waterloo-Cedar Falls Courier in a emailed statement. “With less than 12 days to go, time is precious and Joni wants to spend every minute talking to undecided voters, hearing their concerns, and demonstrating why we need a change in...
  • Joni Ernst and the Right To Revolutionary Violence

    10/23/2014 3:16:42 PM PDT · by 2ndDivisionVet · 26 replies
    Washington Monthy's Political Animal Blog ^ | October 23, 2014 | Ed Kilgore
    The picture of IA GOP SEN nominee Joni Ernst that’s emerging from exposure of her pre-2014-general-election utterances is of a standard-brand Constitutional Conservative embracing all the strange and controversial tenets of that creed. There’s Agenda 21 madness. There’s Personhood advocacy. There are attacks on the entire New Deal/Great Society legacy—and perhaps even agricultural programs—as creating “dependency.” And now, inevitably, there’s the crown jewel of Con Con extremism: the belief that the purpose of the Second Amendment is to enable “patriots” to violently overthrow the government if in their opinion it’s overstepped its constitutional boundaries. Sam Levine of HuffPost has that...
  • As Democrats sweat Iowa, Sen. Tom Harkin sits on millions

    10/17/2014 6:56:36 PM PDT · by 2ndDivisionVet · 17 replies
    The Politico ^ | October 16, 2014 | John Bresnahan and Manu Raju
    Senate Democrats are pleading with donors to give to Rep. Bruce Braley’s campaign as they struggle to pull off a victory in Iowa and save their endangered majority. But there’s one key player holding onto his campaign cash: Iowa Sen. Tom Harkin. Despite direct appeals from Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid of Nevada and other top Democrats, Harkin has refused to transfer money from his $2.4 million campaign account to the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, according to sources and campaign finance records....
  • Senate Candidate Joni Ernst Endorses Federal Personhood Bill For Fetuses

    10/16/2014 6:15:03 PM PDT · by 2ndDivisionVet · 11 replies
    The Huffington Post ^ | October 16, 2014 | Laura Bassett
    Iowa Republican Senate candidate Joni Ernst said she would support a federal bill that gives legal personhood rights to fetuses from the moment of fertilization, effectively wiping out legal abortion in the United States. Ernst voted for a fetal personhood amendment in the Iowa State legislature in 2013, and she told the Sioux City Journal editorial board on Wednesday that she also would support a federal personhood measure if she were elected to the U.S. Senate. "I will continue to stand by that. I am a pro-life candidate, and this has been shaped by my religious beliefs through the years,"...
  • Ed Show Guest: Joni Ernst Is A 'Trained Circus Monkey' Of The Kochs

    10/15/2014 4:44:45 AM PDT · by 2ndDivisionVet · 18 replies
    Truth Revolt ^ | October 14, 2014 | Caleb Howe
    Word salad of left wing buzz words will leave you laughing. (VIDEO-AT-LINK)MSNBC's Ed Schultz has been increasingly, visibly, sweatily desperate as the day count down to the election, and his choices in topics and guests reflect that. On Tuesday's show, Ed's guest, radio host Mike Papantonio delivered just what the doctor ordered for the poor, overwrought Ed: a blazingly useless word salad of left-wing buzz words and scare phrases all wrapped up in a neat Koch bow. Harry Reid would be proud (if he were capable of positive emotions). “"The Joni Ernst candidate is the perfect mental and moral blank...
  • Awful news: Iowa Senate candidate killed in plane crash (Libertarian)

    10/14/2014 8:37:06 PM PDT · by 2ndDivisionVet · 11 replies
    Twitchy ^ | October 14, 2014 | Staff
    Joni Ernst ✔ @joniernst Deeply saddened by tragic news of Dr. Doug Butzier. Gail&I will keep Doug’s family in our thoughts&prayers as they mourn their untimely loss 12:09 PM - 14 Oct 2014 32 Retweets 16 favorites Doug Butzier, Libertarian Party candidate running against Bruce Braley and Joni Ernst for U.S. Senate, lost his life yesterday in a plane crash. The wife of Doug Butzier confirmed Tuesday morning to KCRG-TV that it was Butzier who was killed in a plane crash Monday. … Federal Aviation Administration spokesman Lynn Lunsford said the Piper PA-46 crashed around 11 p.m. Monday on approach...
  • Michelle Obama calls ‘Bruce Bailey’ (D-CAND, Iowa Senate) a ‘Marine.’

    10/10/2014 6:35:28 PM PDT · by 2ndDivisionVet · 38 replies
    Red State ^ | October 10, 2014 | Moe Lane
    Full disclosure: I feel awful today. Vaguely half-nauseous, having what we will gently call ‘digestive issues,’ generally logy and possibly congested: it seemed like an excellent time to take it easy. It would take a definite electoral disaster to pierce this fog of illness, in short. And Michelle Obama delivered. Jimmy @JimmyPrinceton Bruce Braley never even served. How does FLOTUS think he's a USMC vet? 4:18 PM - 10 Oct 2014 8 Retweets 4 favorites Here’s the video of the event: it autoplays and I can’t turn it off, so skip ahead to 3:28 – where, indeed, the First Lady...
  • Sooey! Joni Ernst ahead 6 points in key Iowa poll

    09/28/2014 12:27:47 PM PDT · by 2ndDivisionVet · 12 replies
    Legal Insurrection ^ | September 28, 2014 | Amy Miller
    Dems freaking out. Remember Joni Ernst? She’s the pig-castrating, conservative candidate for Senate out of Iowa who took the internet by storm earlier this year with her campaign video claiming she’ll “make big spenders squeal” when she gets to Washington. Since she kicked off her campaign, Ernst has been seen as a long-shot to take the seat that had been held for 30 years by Democrat Tom Harkin, but a recent poll shows that her Dem opponent Bruce Braley is now running defense. Via the Des Moines Register: Ernst leads 44 percent to 38 percent in a race that has...
  • Iowa Senate Race: Joni Ernst now leads Bruce Braley

    09/28/2014 12:15:37 AM PDT · by entropy12 · 32 replies
    Quad City Times ^ | September 27, 2014
    DES MOINES — Republican Joni Ernst leads Democrat Bruce Braley by 6 percentage points in Iowa’s open-seat U.S. Senate race, a new Iowa Poll published Saturday night reveals....
  • Why Iowa’s Senate race is one of the closest in the nation

    09/17/2014 1:11:33 AM PDT · by 2ndDivisionVet · 7 replies
    The Public Broadcasting Service ^ | September 16, 2014 | Judy Woodruff
    (VIDEO-AT-LINK)TRANSCRIPT JUDY WOODRUFF: A quick look at the calendar reminds us that today is just seven weeks away from this year’s midterm elections, when voters across the country will be deciding ballot issues and choosing state and local officeholders and members of Congress. With control of the U.S. Senate up for grabs, I headed to Iowa this past weekend, the site of one of the closest contests in the nation. If you love college football, the place to be in Iowa this past weekend was Iowa City, the home of the University of Iowa Hawkeyes, as they hosted the Iowa...
  • It’s Happening: NBC News reveals Hillary too far right for some Iowa Democrats

    09/15/2014 3:34:00 PM PDT · by 2ndDivisionVet · 34 replies
    Hot Air ^ | September 15, 2014 | Noah Rothman
    After coming in third in the Iowa caucuses in 2008, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton does not have much love for Hawkeye State Democrats. The feeling, it seems, is mutual. Over the weekend, Clinton traveled to Iowa to attend retiring Sen. Tom Harkin’s (D-IA) “steak fry,” an event which has become an institution in the pivotal Midwestern electoral battleground. NBC News sent Andrea Mitchell along with her where the reporter spent some time speaking to prospective Democratic caucus-goers. Mitchell found what so many know in their hearts to be true: Clinton’s support among Democrats is a mile wide and...
  • Braley Backs Moving Guantanamo Terrorists To The United States

    09/13/2014 6:58:24 PM PDT · by 2ndDivisionVet · 9 replies
    The Washington Free Beacon ^ | September 12, 2014 | Daniel Wiser
    Iowa Democrat continues to support plan despite years of congressional opposition.Rep. Bruce Braley (D., Iowa) continued to vote in favor of transferring terrorist prisoners at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, to a U.S. facility even after the plan collapsed due to congressional opposition, according to government records. Republicans have blasted Braley this week for supporting an initial proposal in 2009 to move the detainees to an Illinois correctional center near the Iowa border. The criticism comes as polls show that an overwhelming majority of Americans view the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL or ISIS), the al Qaeda offshoot that...
  • How Joni Ernst Became a Contender: Democrats have been surprised by her strength in Iowa

    09/12/2014 6:54:34 PM PDT · by 2ndDivisionVet · 23 replies
    The National Review ^ | September 9, 2014 | Joel Gehrke
    How did Iowa state senator Joni Ernst become a threat to Harry Reid’s Democratic majority in the U.S. Senate? “The Democrats have thrown everything but the kitchen sink at Ms. Ernst, and at the best this race is a tie, it’s still a pure toss-up in what should be a marginally Democrat environment in Iowa,” a GOP pollster told NRO. This race was not supposed to challenge Democrats or drain their resources. “I was confident Rep. Braley would win the day he announced,” state Democratic-party chairman Tyler Olsen said in February, “and I’m only getting more confident every day.” What...
  • Clinton tops Democrats in Iowa while Huckabee leads Republicans

    09/12/2014 11:02:27 AM PDT · by 2ndDivisionVet · 42 replies
    CNN ^ | September 12, 2014 | Dan Merica
    Hillary Clinton is heading to Iowa as the politician that most Democrats would choose as their 2016 presidential nominee. According to a new CNN/ORC poll, 53% of all registered Democrats contacted in Iowa said they would support Hillary Clinton if the 2016 caucuses were held today. That number far outpaces the 15% that would opt for Vice President Joe Biden, 7% who would choose Sen. Elizabeth Warren and 5% who would pick Sen. Bernie Sanders. Clinton will be visiting Iowa for the first time in six years on Sunday when she headlines the last Harkin Steak Fry. Biden, likewise, will...
  • The 65 people who might run for president in 2016

    08/21/2014 8:49:36 PM PDT · by 2ndDivisionVet · 64 replies
    The Hill ^ | August 20, 2014 | Bob Cusack, Vivian Hughbanks and Tomas Navia
    (VIDEO-AT-LINK)There are 65 prominent people who might run for president in 2016. The Democratic and Republican fields contrast sharply. Hillary Clinton is the clear front-runner, while there is no front-runner on the Republican side. Twenty-three Democrats have been mentioned as a candidate or are eyeing a bid, according to an analysis by The Hill. The GOP side has 42. Most of the people on this list won’t run, and some have adamantly claimed that they’re not interested. But many politicians have changed their minds on seeking the White House. Before mounting his 2008 bid, then-Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.) said he...
  • Mitch McConnell's campaign manager resigns after Iowa bribery scandal deepens

    08/29/2014 6:16:15 PM PDT · by 2ndDivisionVet · 4 replies
    The Lexington Herald-Leader ^ | August 29, 2014 | Sam Youngman
    Jesse Benton, the campaign manager for U.S. Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, will resign his post as a bribery scandal from the 2012 presidential campaign threatens to envelop Benton and become a major distraction for McConnell's campaign. Benton told the Herald-Leader that he met with McConnell Friday afternoon and offered his resignation, which McConnell "reluctantly accepted." Benton said he offered his resignation, effective Saturday, with a "heavy heart." He maintained his innocence, faulting "inaccurate press accounts and unsubstantiated media rumors." "This decision breaks my heart, but I know it is the right thing for Mitch, for Kentucky and for the...
  • Democrats try out a new/old bogeywoman: Sarah Palin

    08/20/2014 2:01:22 AM PDT · by 2ndDivisionVet · 10 replies
    The Washington Post's The Fix ^ | August 18, 2014 | Aaron Blake
    The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee is out with a new ad Monday tying Iowa GOP Senate hopeful Joni Ernst to Sarah Palin. The 30-second ad plays audio of Palin praising Ernst and Ernst praising Palin. (VIDEO-AT-LINK)Given that Palin is broadly unpopular and highly polarizing, the ad might seem to be much ado about nothing. After all, Palin has been a Democratic foil for years. But national Democrats haven't actually used her much in their advertising campaigns. And, in fact, this is the first TV ad the DSCC has ever run featuring Palin. The committee did feature Palin in a 2009...
  • Rand Paul Skips Iowa Confab, Hits Hamptons Fundraiser

    08/13/2014 4:13:30 PM PDT · by 2ndDivisionVet · 10 replies
    RealClearPolitics ^ | August 13, 2014 | Scott Conroy
    To paraphrase a memorable advertisement starring a young Andre Agassi: In Iowa, image is everything. It's a lesson that Rand Paul appears to be learning the hard way. Citing a "family commitment," the likely 2016 White House hopeful passed on attending Saturday’s Family Leadership Summit -- evangelical leader Bob Vander Plaats’ annual gathering of social-conservative activists in Ames, Iowa. Few in the nation’s first voting state would have considered the Kentucky senator’s absence a big deal, especially since Paul has been extremely active building relationships in Iowa and has visited there frequently over the past year, including a three-day trip...
  • Ted Cruz’s positioning in Iowa

    08/11/2014 10:30:06 PM PDT · by 2ndDivisionVet · 12 replies
    The Washington Post's Right Turn ^ | August 11, 2014 | Jennifer Rubin
    With each trip to an early primary state, potential 2016 Republican candidates are defining the issues and their own experience in ways that will bolster their presidential prospects. Pundits call this sort of activity “creating a narrative,” but whatever you call it, it can provide insight into the candidates’ self-image and what they think the primary electorate will want in a nominee. Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Tex.), in an Iowa visit, sought to define five conservative victories: “Stopping the gun legislation that followed the Newtown shooting;” “stopping a bill reforming the International Monetary Fund that would have put more taxpayer money...
  • DREAMer confronts Steve King: Here, tear up my DACA card if you don’t want me here

    08/05/2014 2:41:39 PM PDT · by 2ndDivisionVet · 29 replies
    Hot Air ^ | August 5, 2014 | Allahpundit
    As many others have noted, the high point here is Rand Paul bailing out mid-bite as soon as he hears the word “DREAM.” He’ll get in your face on foreign policy and he’ll push bold, controversial ideas like restoring voting rights to felons, but put him on camera in the middle of a squabble between Steve “Cantaloupe Calves” King and a pair of illegals when he’s gearing up for 2016 and all that’s left is one of those little dust clouds like in a Roadrunner cartoon. If not for that, my favorite moment would be Erika Andiola reassuring King that...
  • Rep. Steve King Predicts Impeachment if Obama Grants Executive Amnesty

    07/26/2014 5:25:27 PM PDT · by 2ndDivisionVet · 35 replies
    Breitbart's Big Government ^ | July 26, 2014 | Tony Lee
    Rep. Steve King (R-IA) believes the House of Representatives will immediately begin impeachment proceedings if President Barack Obama unilaterally grants work permits and amnesty to millions more illegal immigrants by the "end of summer." Appearing on Breitbart News Saturday with co-hosts Breitbart News Executive Chairman Stephen K. Bannon and Editor-in-Chief Alex Marlow from the U.S.-Mexico border in Texas, King said that if Obama "completely destroys the rule of law with the stroke of a pen" and "Congress fails to act," there will be "enough Republicans who didn't have a desire to do this" that will be "immediately activated" to consider...
  • Up in the air: Mike Huckabee’s private plane habit

    07/14/2014 6:52:08 PM PDT · by 2ndDivisionVet · 38 replies
    The Politico ^ | July 14, 2014 | Alexander Burns
    Huckabee is flying more comfortably than during the 2008 race.As a presidential candidate, Mike Huckabee made a name for himself as the regular Joe on the debate stage, a threadbare underdog who couldn’t afford his opponents’ Madison Avenue-style commercials, plush hotels and chartered planes. In his campaign memoir, Huckabee proclaimed that he “kept in touch” with ordinary people while eating food-court fare and waiting for long-delayed commercial flights as “other candidates were stepping onto their Gulfstream jets.” These days, the former Arkansas governor is living — and flying — far more comfortably. Now a Fox News commentator and highly paid...
  • GOP's Ernst of Iowa to Give Party's Radio Address

    07/11/2014 9:04:07 PM PDT · by 2ndDivisionVet · 1 replies
    ABC News / The Associated Press ^ | July 11, 2014 | Thomas Beaumont
    Iowa Senate candidate Joni Ernst will take a break from campaigning for two weeks to take part in active-duty training for the Iowa National Guard. But before lacing up her boots, Ernst was to record the Republicans' national radio address, the Republican National Committee said Friday. Ernst, a lieutenant colonel and state senator from southwest Iowa, recorded the speech Thursday evening just hours before she was scheduled to report for duty at 6 a.m. From central Iowa Ernst was leading a convoy to Fort McCoy, Wisconsin, where for the next two weeks she will drill with her transportation battalion....
  • Green groups tie Iowa Senate nominee to Palin

    06/24/2014 1:32:36 PM PDT · by 2ndDivisionVet · 5 replies
    The Hill's Ballot Box ^ | June 24, 2014 | Cameron Joseph
    (VIDEO-AT-LINK) A coalition of environmental groups is going after Iowa state Sen. Joni Ernst (R), tying her to former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin (R) and Charles and David Koch in a new ad. The League of Conservation Voters, Sierra Club and Environmental Defense Fund are backing the spot, part of a planned $1 million push to help elect Rep. Bruce Braley (D-Iowa) to the Senate. The ad features footage of Palin's endorsement of Ernst during the primary, before attacking Ernst for her calls to shut down the Department of Education and abolish the Environmental Protection Agency. "That's why extremist Sarah...
  • Top Democrat: Tea party swallowed GOP

    06/13/2014 5:33:21 PM PDT · by 2ndDivisionVet · 25 replies
    DES MOINES — It’s not often that a Democratic Party top national strategist travels to Iowa to lament an election loss of a prominent conservative Republican leader. But that happened Friday when Democratic National Committee Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz warned that the defeat of House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, a Virginia Republican who is the second most-powerful U.S. House leader, could be a harbinger of deeper political extremism, gridlock and obstructionism....
  • Joni Ernst Leads Two IA Polls after Bruce Braley Insults Women, Farmers

    06/07/2014 10:03:27 PM PDT · by 2ndDivisionVet · 9 replies
    Breitbart's Big Government ^ | June 7, 2014 | Tony Lee
    Just days after becoming Iowa's Republican Senate nominee, Joni Ernst has taken the lead over Democrat Rep. Bruce Braley (D-IA) in two polls in a race that could decide which party controls the U.S. Senate. A poll by Loras College's Public Opinion Survey Center found Ernst leading with 48% to Braley's 41.7%. A Rasmussen Reports poll also has Ernst leading Braley by one percentage point (45%-44%). Ernst navigated the GOP civil war, getting the endorsements of everyone from Sarah Palin to Mitt Romney. Republicans, who need to gain six seats to take back the Senate, coalesced around her because, as...
  • How Ernst won (or how Jacobs managed to lose)

    06/05/2014 8:30:16 PM PDT · by 2ndDivisionVet · 11 replies
    The Ames Tribune ^ | June 4, 2014 | Steffen Schmidt
    The Iowa Republican Senate primary is over and the results were stunning. The winner is state Senator and National Guard Lt. Col. Joni Ernst with an astonishing 56.2 percent of the vote in a five-candidate primary. Conservative talk show host and professor Sam Clovis came in second with 18 percent. Analysts agree that what’s most amazing is the third-place finish of Mark Jacobs with 16.8 percent. Jacobs was born in Iowa but lived in Texas most of his life. In Texas he took over a troubled energy company and “fixed” it. When he was done, most employees had been fired...
  • Democrats Should Worry About Iowa

    06/04/2014 10:40:50 AM PDT · by 2ndDivisionVet · 8 replies
    National Journal ^ | June 3, 2014 | Alex Roarty
    Republican nominee Joni Ernst has to prove she's a strong candidate, but she faces a run-of-the-mill Democrat in a state prone to swing toward the GOP. Iowa once looked like one of the great GOP disappointments of 2014. Top-tier recruits such as Rep. Tom Latham and Lt. Gov. Kim Reynolds passed on the open-seat race and left Republicans with a handful of unknowns fighting a messy primary. Democrats, meanwhile, gave four-term Rep. Bruce Braley a free year to prepare for the general election. But then Braley insulted the state's most important constituency, the Republican Party discovered Joni Ernst, and suddenly...
  • Poll: Joni Ernst Opens Up 18-Pt Lead in Iowa

    06/01/2014 3:56:50 PM PDT · by 2ndDivisionVet · 22 replies
    Breitbart's Big Government ^ | June 1, 2014 | Tony Lee
    Iowa Republican Senate candidate Joni Ernst has opened up an 18-point lead and is on pace to win the nomination on Tuesday, according to the results of a Des Moines Register poll three days before the primary. Ernst, who has been endorsed by former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin and became a household name with her hog castration ad, has 36% in the poll, which was released on Saturday evening. Mark Jacobs, the more liberal businessman who has poured millions of his own money into the race, has 18%. A candidate needs to receive more than 35% of the vote to...
  • Joni Ernst gets big endorsement in Iowa GOP Senate primary (Des Moines Register)

    05/21/2014 12:41:15 PM PDT · by 2ndDivisionVet · 8 replies
    CNN's Political Ticker ^ | May 19, 2014 | Ashley Killough
    Republican Senate hopeful Joni Ernst got a boost Sunday with the endorsement of The Des Moines Register in Iowa. Ahead of the state's GOP primary on June 3, the newspaper's editorial board argued Ernst, a state senator, is a "smart, well-prepared candidate who can wrestle with the details of public policy from a conservative perspective without seeming inflexible." Ernst is facing four opponents in the GOP primary. She has recently emerged as a top contender and made national headlines with unusual TV ads - one of which highlighted her hog-castrating skills while another showed her riding up to a gun...
  • Poll: 'Hog Castration' Candidate's Lead Widens in Iowa Senate Primary

    05/16/2014 9:11:43 PM PDT · by 2ndDivisionVet · 26 replies
    NewsMax ^ | May 16, 2014 | Melanie Batley
    Iowa Republican Senate candidate Joni Ernst, who was catapulted onto the national stage in March with a viral campaign ad claiming she had Washington pork-cutting skills from her days castrating hogs, has more than a 10-point lead over her nearest primary rival, a new poll has found. According to a Loras College Poll conducted May 12-13 of 600 likely Iowa voters, Ernst has 30.8 percent of the support, compared to businessman Mark Jacobs who has 19.3 percent support with less than three weeks to go until the June 3 election. Each of the three other candidates has less than 10...
  • WATCH: Iowa GOP Senate Candidate Still Believes There Were Weapons of Mass Destruction in Iraq

    05/12/2014 6:06:11 PM PDT · by 2ndDivisionVet · 50 replies
    Mother Jones ^ | May 12, 2014 | Patrick Caldwell, DC Bureau Reporter
    War veteran Joni Ernst claims to have vague, secret knowledge that contradicts every public report.(VIDEO-AT-LINK)Iowa state senator and US Senate candidate Joni Ernst captured national attention when her campaign's first TV ad featured the candidate talking about castrating hogs (a subsequent ad featured Ernst at a gun range, implying that she'd shoot Obamacare to bits). But if the Sarah Palin-approved Republican wants to enter national politics, she may need to brush up on some of her facts. Ernst still thinks Saddam Hussein possessed weapons of mass destruction when the US invaded Iraq, despite all evidence pointing to the contrary. On...
  • Marco Rubio backs Joni Ernst in Iowa primary

    05/05/2014 12:10:44 PM PDT · by 2ndDivisionVet · 7 replies
    The Politico ^ | May 5, 2014 | Burgess Everett
    Sen. Marco Rubio jumped into Iowa’s contested Senate primary on Monday, throwing his support behind conservative candidate Joni Ernst. After indicating in recent weeks that he would stay away from GOP primary season, the Florida senator decided to wade into one of the most consequential Senate races in the country by backing Ernst. Not only does Iowa hold the first-in-the-nation presidential caucus in 2016, but the state also will be central to the battle for the Senate this fall — unlike contested primaries in red states such as Oklahoma and Nebraska. Rubio made the announcement through his Reclaim America PAC...